Thursday, March 30, 2017

BOMA International Advocacy Update: BOMA Leads the ADA Reform Effort & New OSHA Rules In Effect




BOMA International Supports ADA Legislation Introduced in House


Congressman Ted Poe (R-Texas) recently introduced legislation in the U.S. House of Representatives that would amend the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) to curb the practice of 'drive-by' lawsuits—frivolous lawsuits filed by unscrupulous attorneys against building owners citing ADA noncompliance issues. Much of the time, these lawsuits do not seek to remedy the alleged ADA infraction or benefit the needs of the disabled community; the plaintiff is simply looking for a quick settlement.

H.R. 620, the ADA Education and Reform Act, provides a notice and cure provision that allows building owners 120 days to correct identified ADA violations before the commencement of litigation. A balanced, bi-partisan coalition comprised of Representatives Scott Peters (D-Calif.), Ken Calvert (R-Calif.), Jackie Speier (D-Calif.), Michael Conaway (R-Texas) and Ami Bera (D-Calif.) joined onto the bill as lead co-sponsors. To thank them for their efforts on behalf of commercial real estate, BOMA International President Henry Chamberlain sent this letter of support to the sponsoring offices.

BOMA International's advocacy team has been working hard on this matter for years, making lawmakers aware of the issue and securing bipartisan support for this legislation. If you have been negatively affected by a "drive-by" lawsuit, please contact BOMA International's Manager of Advocacy, Dylan Isenberg, at disenberg@boma.org. Your story may help BOMA's efforts on Capitol Hill.


New OSHA Rules Now in Effect

Under new regulations by the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) that went into effect January 17, building owners now are responsible for having roof anchors inspected and certified prior to allowing vendors to use them for window cleaning or fa├žade inspections. Certifications must be completed by November 17.

The Walking-Working Surfaces and Fall Protection Standards include a number of other new requirements; building owners and managers should read OSHA’s Fact Sheet to understand how the rules will impact their facilities. BOMA International’s codes team also has created a useful guide to understanding the new rules.

If you have any questions, contact BOMA International's Director of Codes & Standards, Steve Orlowski, at sorlowski@boma.org.

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