ISSA Advocacy Weekly Recap—December 20, 2019December 20, 2019
Welcome to the ISSA Advocacy Weekly Recap! This is ISSA’s regular roundup of the latest public policy-related issues impacting the cleaning industry. With 2019 almost over, this week’s recap is a look back at the top five advocacy-related stories from the past year.
- California and Washington State Pass Workplace Harassment Legislation
California Governor Gavin Newsom signed a series of bills addressing workplace harassment including one specifically for custodial employees and employers. Currently California, Oregon, and Washington, have all enacted laws that mandate additional protections specifically for custodial and/or isolated workers.
On September 24, 2019 the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) announced it finalized new rules relating to overtime pay for salaried workers. The new final rule, effective January 1, 2020, increased the salary level that defines employee eligibility for overtime pay from US$23,700 to $35,568. The final overtime rules are much more reasonable than the original rule proposed in 2016, which if it had gone into effect would have increased the threshold to $51,000 in January of 2020. ISSA’s formal comments were referenced twice by the DOL in the final rule. ISSA’s 2015 comments to DOL pointed out the original rules would have cost our members, “$100,000 to well over $750,000 annually depending on the size of the company and the number of employees.” Since 2015, ISSA has been active on this issue by being a member of the Partnership to Protect Workplace Opportunity (PPWO), submitting comments, participating in a U.S. Small Business Administration’s Office of Advocacy roundtable discussion, as well as engaging members with regular updates on the subject.
- Judge Invalidates NewYork’s Ingredient Disclosure Program
On August 27, the New York State Supreme Court invalidated New York’s Ingredient Disclosure Program for not following proper rulemaking procedures. The Household Consumer Products Association (HCPA) and the American Cleaning Institute filed the lawsuit in part because the program was written in a way that is much more onerous and overly broad compared to California’s Cleaning Product Right to Know Act of 2017. For now, the cleaning industry has been granted a reprieve and does not have to observe New York’s ingredient disclosure requirements. California’s program is still set to go into effect in January 2020 and was not impacted by the ruling.
On March 8, 2019 President Donald Trump signed the reauthorization of the Pesticide Registration Improvement Act (PRIA 4) into law. PRIA reauthorization is critical to the continued registration of disinfectants and sanitizers by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency through 2023. The PRIA Coalition, of which ISSA is a founding member, met with dozens of congressional offices to advocate in favor of it leading up to the votes. ISSA also worked with allies to urge Senate and House Appropriations Committees to renew funding for PRIA 4 to ensure that our members’ disinfectants and sanitizers are registered on a timely and predictable basis. ISSA has been proactively pushing for reauthorization since 2016.
In January 2019, ISSA hired John Nothdurft as director of government affairs and began developing and implementing a long-term strategic plan for the association’s advocacy efforts. The goal of these advocacy efforts is to create a legislative and regulatory environment that allows the worldwide cleaning industry to thrive. In addition to important policy successes, ISSA gathered important feedback from members, launched a vital bill track and grassroots advocacy tool, identified and engaged allies, began creating a grassroots network, drafted updated issue advocacy materials and policy positions, launched an online “Action Center,” and expanded its direct outreach to policymakers and the public about the importance of the cleaning industry.
Other top stories: