ISSA LARU—ISSA Celebrates National Cleaning Week 2022April 15, 2022
Welcome to the latest ISSA Legislative & Regulatory Update (LARU), a biweekly roundup of the latest public-policy issues impacting the full spectrum of the cleaning industry. This update touches on ISSA’s celebration of National Cleaning Week 2022, the introduction of the Essential Workers for Economic Advancement Act in the U.S. House of Representatives, an update on Pesticide Registration Improvement Act (PRIA) reauthorization, and more.
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And be sure to check out the latest installment of our video series, Cleaning Is Essential, with ISSA Director of Government Affairs John Nothdurft, to learn about the top three advocacy issues impacting the cleaning industry right now, including the 2022 Clean Advocacy Summit, Employee Retention Tax Credit Reinstatement Act, and Essential Workers for Economic Advancement Act.
U.S. House, 14 States, City of Chicago Proclaim Official Cleaning Week
The U.S. House of Representatives, 14 states, and the City of Chicago proclaimed an official “Cleaning Week” in conjunction with National Cleaning Week, March 27-April 2, 2022.
2022 Clean Advocacy Summit Conquers Washington
ISSA thanks the 58 summit registrants who visited with nearly 40 congressional offices on March 30-31, 2022, to advance the legislative priorities for the cleaning and office product-furniture dealer industries as part of the first in-person Clean Advocacy-Workplace Solutions Summit in Washington, DC and in conjunction with National Cleaning-Workplace Solutions Week. In this edition of Straight Talk!, ISSA Director of Government Affairs John Nothdurft shares with host Jeff Cross the story of how the Clean Advocacy Summit conquered Washington. We hope that you can join us for next year’s Clean Advocacy-Workplace Solutions Summit, which will again take place during National Cleaning-Workplace Solutions Week—March 26-April 1, 2023.
ISSA Honors 2022 Advocates of the Year
ISSA is proud to announce the recipients of the 2022 ISSA Advocate of the Year Awards presented in conjunction with the association’s Clean Advocacy Summit. The award recipients were selected by ISSA with input from its Government Affairs Advisory Committee. The recipients of this year’s awards are Tricia Holderman, Elite Facility Systems President and CEO, and James Purcell, Shamrock Investment Group and Products Chemical Co., LLC President and CEO. The 2022 ISSA Advocate of the Year Awards were made possible by the generous support of Arxada, LLC.
ISSA Announces 2022 Outstanding Government Service Award Winners
ISSA is proud to announce the recipients of the 2022 ISSA Outstanding Government Service Awards presented in conjunction with the association’s Clean Advocacy Summit. The award recipients were selected by ISSA with input from its Government Affairs Advisory Committee. The recipients of this year’s awards are U.S. Representatives Stephanie Murphy (D-FL-07) and Tom Rice (R-SC-07).
ISSA Applauds Introduction of Essential Workers for Economic Advancement Act
ISSA has continuously advocated for the establishment of a non-seasonal, temporary worker program that would allow businesses to legally hire foreign workers to fill essential jobs when American workers are not available. The long-standing labor shortages in the cleaning service industry will not be solved without access to foreign workers to supplement the labor pool. Accordingly, we are pleased that on March 28, 2022, U.S. Representative Lloyd Smucker (R-PA-11) introduced the Essential Workers for Economic Advancement Act.
Update on PRIA Reauthorization
The PRIA Coalition, which includes the eight trade associations whose members register pesticides in various industry segments, continues to make progress on the development of PRIA 5 legislation. The coalition hopes to reauthorize the Pesticide Registration Improvement Act (PRIA) well in advance of the law’s expiration on September 30, 2023. In addition to weekly meetings, the senior executives and staff from each of the associations met in person on March 22 and formulated a tentative approach to addressing PRIA metrics and the law’s required annual report, non-PRIA actions, maintenance fee set asides, and methods to reduce renegotiation rates.
The coalition’s priorities for PRIA reauthorization include:
- Passing a clean reauthorization bill free of extraneous policy issues
- Ensuring that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has the resources it needs to meet deadlines for both PRIA and non-PRIA actions, but also ensuring that there is more EPA predictability around deadlines
- Creating a mechanism to ensure that non-PRIA actions are processed in a timely manner and that the current backlog is addressed
- Prioritizing process improvements, efficiencies, and consistency among reviewers and registering divisions
- Ensuring that EPA user-fee based operations can continue during a government shutdown.
The coalition has had some initial meetings with EPA, the House and Senate Agriculture Committees, the Office of Management and Budget, and various NGO groups. We plan to have follow-up discussions with each of these groups in the coming weeks. We will keep our members updated on the progress of these discussions as we work to shape PRIA 5.
U.S. Senate Approves Bill to Ease Export Shipping Backlogs
The U.S. Senate unanimously passed a bill to improve oversight of ocean shipping, a step that supporters say will help ease export backlogs, Reuters reported. The Ocean Shipping Reform Act, led by Senators John Thune (R-SD) and Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), would strengthen the investigatory authority of the Federal Maritime Commission, the agency that oversees ocean shipping, and boost transparency of industry practices. Similar legislation passed the House of Representatives 364-60 in December, but lawmakers must resolve differences before the bill can go to President Joe Biden for his signature. ISSA strongly supports this legislation.
House Passes $42 Billion Aid Bill for Restaurants
The U.S. House of Representatives passed legislation that would provide more than $40 billion in aid to restaurants and bars, according to FSR. The total package is $55 billion, with $42 billion going to food and drink places and $13 billion going to other hard-hit industries. The measure passed 223-203. The additional money is intended to replenish the $28.6 billion Restaurant Revitalization Fund (RRF), which was quickly depleted last year. The original RRF included funding for business supplies such as protective equipment and cleaning materials. The Senate is working on its own $48 billion financial aid legislation, which would give $40 billion to restaurants and bars and the remaining $8 billion to gyms, minor league teams, live event venues, buses and ferries, and other businesses hurt by the pandemic. ISSA strongly supports this legislation.
OSHA Seeks Comments on Standard to Protect Health Care Workers from COVID-19
The U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) scheduled a public hearing to seek comments on topics related to a final standard to protect health care and health care support service workers from exposure to the SARS-CoV-2 virus, Cleaning & Maintenance Management reported. The online hearing will begin on April 27, 2022. Individuals interested in testifying must have submitted their notice of intention to appear by April 6 and submit written comments by April 22.
OSHA Will Identify Employers Who Fail to Submit Injury and Illness Data
If your company hasn’t met the deadline to submit employee injuries and illnesses to the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), it could face repercussions as soon as later this month, according to Cleaning & Maintenance Management. OSHA is initiating an enforcement program that identifies employers who failed to submit Form 300A data through the agency’s Injury Tracking Application.
SEC Proposes Landmark Climate Disclosure Rule
The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) approved a landmark proposal to require all publicly traded companies to disclose their greenhouse gas emissions and the risks that they face from climate change, Cleaning & Maintenance Management reported.
SBA Extends Deferment Period for Disaster Loan Program
The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) is allowing those who sought disaster loans from the COVID-19 Economic Injury Disaster Loan program to extend the deferment period for 30 months from when the loan was first approved, according to Inc. Those seeking this deferment will still need to pay interest of around 3 percent on the loans.
U.S. Restores Waivers for Some Chinese Goods Hit by Tariffs
The Biden administration plans to reinstate exemptions from Trump-era tariffs on about two-thirds of Chinese products that were previously granted waivers, most of which expired by the end of 2020, Bloomberg News reported.
Appeals Court Revives Biden Vaccine Mandate for Federal Employees
A federal appeals court reinstated the Biden administration’s COVID-19 vaccine requirement for federal employees, overturning a nationwide injunction by a Texas federal judge in January, CNN reported. The President also mandated vaccination for employees of federal contractors, but those requirements were put on hold in the lower courts, where proceedings continue. Additionally, the U.S. Supreme Court blocked the administration’s COVID-19 vaccine-or-testing rules for large private employers, while allowing the administration to require vaccinations for more than 10 million health care workers whose facilities participate in Medicare or Medicaid.
Idaho Passes Bill Banning COVID-19 Vaccine Requirements
Despite opposition from some Idaho businesses, the Idaho House gave final passage to the Coronavirus Pause Act, sending legislation to the governor’s desk to impose a one-year ban on COVID-19 vaccine requirements by businesses, venues, or employers in the state, Idaho Press reported. The House vote was 45-23 in favor of SB 1381, which had earlier passed the Senate.