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New OSHA Silica Dust Rule to Impact Over 675,000 Workplaces, Biggest Impact on Construction Industry

On March 25, 2016, 81 Fed. Reg. 16286, OSHA issued a new final rulemaking to reduce silica dust exposure that will directly affect more than 2 million construction workers who drill, cut, crush, or grind silica-containing materials such as concrete and stone, and 300,000 workers in general industry operations such as brick manufacturing, foundries, and hydraulic fracturing. OSHA explains that silica dust exposure occurs in common workplace operations involving cutting, sawing, drilling, and crushing of concrete, brick, block, rock, and stone products (such as construction tasks), and operations using sand products (such as in glass manufacturing, foundries, sand blasting, and hydraulic fracturing).

Criminal Prosecution of Worker Safety Violations – New DOJ Initiative to Increase Criminal Enforcement of OSHA Matters

On December 17, 2015, the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) announced a major new initiative to increase the number of criminal charges in worker endangerment and worker safety cases. Although the DOJ and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) have had a worker endangerment initiative for a number of years, the new changes are intended to bolster the likelihood and number of criminal prosecutions which historically have languished, according to DOJ, due to the OSH Act’s misdemeanor criminal provisions.

SEMINAR: Learn How to Succeed in Government Contracts

If you’ve shied away from government contracts in the past, this free seminar will give you a working knowledge of how to succeed when working with the government.Register here

Contracts for Contractors – A Best Practices Guide (Part Two)

In my last post, I discussed the fact that the most important tool for a contractor is your written contract, which can help build a customer’s confidence in your company and avoid the types of misunderstandings and unrealistic expectations that ultimately can lead to a breakdown of the customer relationship, jeopardize the project and result in litigation.

Contracts for Contractors – A Best Practices Guide

The most important tool for a contractor is your written contract. A good solid contract is the foundation for a positive experience for both you and your customers. It establishes a relationship with your customers, and builds their confidence in you and your company. More importantly, it helps to prevent misunderstandings and false expectations that can lead to a breakdown in your customer relationship, jeopardize the project and result in litigation.

Construction Site Stormwater: Turbidity Numeric Criteria Out, BMPs In

On March 6, 2014, EPA published its final rule for construction activities which will require the use of best management practices (BMPs) in lieu of numeric criteria for turbidity.

MEDC 2013 Fall Conference

Spencer Fane’s “The Spirit of 76” Project was featured at the MEDC 2013 Fall Conference conference held in Branson, Missouri.

OSHA Proposing to Adopt Stricter Silica Dust Exposure Limits and Work Practice Standards

On August 23, 2013, OSHA issued a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking designed to reduce the permissible exposure limit (PEL) associated with silica dust exposure. OSHA is proposing a new PEL for respirable crystalline silica (quartz, cristobalite, and tridymite) of 50 μg/m3 in the general industry, construction, and shipyard sectors, a standard anywhere from two to five times more stringent than current PELs that date back to 1971.

Are Commercial Buildings and Public Buildings a Lead-Paint Hazard? Contractors Could be Impacted by Renovation Regulations Contemplated by EPA

Today’s guest post is courtesy of Andrew Brought, a partner with Spencer Fane Britt & Browne, LLP’s Environmental Group.
If you manage or perform renovations, repairs, or painting activities on the exterior or interior of public building or commercial buildings, you should be aware that EPA is currently evaluating whether and how to regulate such activities in public buildings or commercial buildings constructed before 1978 that pose lead-based paint hazards. On Monday, May 13, 2013, EPA issued a notice in the Federal Register that it is seeking public comment on this topic until July 12, 2013, and will host a public meeting at EPA’s headquarters on June 26, 2013.

Why Construction Professionals Must Understand the Intricacies of Surety Bonds

As a construction professional, it’s likely you’ve had your fair share of experience with bonds (such as payment bonds, performance bonds, contract bonds and contractor license bonds), but understanding the purpose of surety bonds can sometimes be difficult to grasp for even the most experienced contractor.
Today’s guest post is courtesy of Sara Eisenberg, Director of Educational Outreach at SuretyBonds.com. Sara will explain why it is so important for construction professionals to understand the bonding process and how you can become more established in the industry by making sure you know the bond that’s required for projects before you even submit a bid.

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