Home > Programs > Bureau of Environmental Protection > Office of Customer and Technical Assistance > Auto Body Certification Steering Committee Meeting #3
November 28, 2000, 3:00 - 4:30 p.m.
Narragansett Bay Commission
235 Promenade Street
Providence, RI 02908
Richard Enander opened the meeting by thanking everyone for attending the 3rd Autobody Certification Steering Committee Meeting. Richard acknowledged that all committee members had sections of the Certification Program mailed to them several weeks before the meeting in order that committee members could review the sections and be prepared to make any comments on the format or content of the materials. All committee members agreed on the format of the Waste and Air sections.
Richard asked committee members to respond to their impressions of the workbook and provide feedback if any information needed to be added or clarified. Jeanne McCarthy suggested that a separate section for the Department of Business Regulation be added for the specific regulations that apply to the autobody sector. Jeanne said that she would Fax over a copy of the DBR Regulations that target autobody shops. In describing the TITLE 5 Chapter 38 Section 5 (5-38-5) which concerns itself with standards for sanitary, hygienic and healthful conditions of autobody shops, Dick Scott of DOH believed that the DBR standard may be too ambiguous and be superseded by the OSHA's standards. It was determined that a separate section for DBR will be included in the workbook and if any overlap or confusion between OSHA's standard and DBRs' existed, that a determination would have to be made at the next steering committee meeting.
Jim Gamelin and Richard Scott of OSHA's Consultative Program also suggested that licensed shops contact them directly and receive "free" audits instead of paying consultants. Jim acknowledged that there is a lead time of a few months before OSHA's Consultative group could actually perform the audits. Jim also suggested that the workbook include "language that would promote DOH's consultative program" and would make the average shop owner less intimidated by actively seeking out OSHA's help. Jeff Mocarsky, owner of MAACO, one of the areas highest volume shops talked about his experiences in dealing with OSHA's Consultative Program. Jeff said that although his company had to address many issues, he was very happy that he allowed OSHA's consultative group to voluntarily visit his shop and perform the audit. Jeff repeated that he was given ample time to make any corrective actions and underscored the importance of keeping the lines of communication open with DOH. Jeff said, "All in all, it was a very positive experience".
Richard Missaghian added that talks have begun in developing a videotape that would accompany the workbook and potential training dates at Davies Learning Center.
The issue of whether to make the training mandatory or not was the next topic of discussion. Committee members differed in their opinions on whether making training mandatory was necessary or not. One committee member, an owner of a local autobody shop said that the only way that this program can succeed was if training was made mandatory. This autobody owner believes that until and unless the industry is "forced" into making changes, that no change will come at all. Tom Uva, a regulator with the Narragansett Bay Commission, also agreed with the aforementioned autobody shop owner and suggested that training be made mandatory. In his experience as a regulator, Tom believes that mandatory training is the only way to succeed with this program. Jim Gamelin added that the construction industry has a similar approach where OSHA requires 10 hours of mandatory training. Rich Enander suggested that the verification for training be included in DBR's criteria in issuing a license.
Another autobody shop owner however did not believe that mandatory training was feasible and the amount of funding needed to get the average shop into compliance would be cost-prohibitive. He suggested that shops be given 5 years to get into compliance. He also suggested that once jobbers become aware of the "crackdown" on the autobody industry, that jobbers will take advantage of them. Jim Gamelin countered that while providing training to shops, he actually helps shops save money, by advising which pieces of protective equipment are mandatory and which may be superfluous.
No specific areas of the workbook were debated as all committee members were satisfied with the product thus far. Ron Gagnon reiterated that when going through the checklist, shops should be encouraged to answer truthfully if they have any areas that they a) may not understand, or b) may not yet be in compliance with. Tom also noted that only one person per company need be trained, and that the "trainer" can then in turn train the rest of his staff. Tom said that through his experience, that "shops want to do the right thing" but need to be educated as to which regulations apply to them. Jeanne suggested that a "short-list" be devised that lists THE most important aspects of the program. Rich and Ron agreed that such a list could be provided. Richard Enander thanked everyone for their input and indicated that the next meeting will be held once the workbook is near completion. The OSHA, Pollution Prevention, Fire Safety and DBR sections will be mailed out for review prior to the next meeting.