I just returned from a 3 day meeting at out Nations Capitol where I met with our California’s State Senators and congressmen, the purpose of the trip was to lobby our representatives about needed changes affecting small business.
The legislative conference was held by the Plumbing, Heating, Cooling Association of which I am the current President for the State of California. PHCC is the oldest trade organization in the United States celebrating 135 years .
The top issues are:
· Repeal of the Death tax, if nothing is done by the first of the year the inheritance tax will rise to 55% of amount inherited, my position is the tax should be eliminated entirely.
· Lead Paint Rule, The EPA created legislation to protect pregnant women and children from lead paint in older homes. Originally there was a provision for homeowners to opt out of this requirement, we would like that reinstated, also there is no commercially available kit to test for lead that meets the regulations requirements, that means you have to send paint chips to a lab before you can start work, not a good idea when you have a leaking pipe. In short the legislation needs to be fine-tuned before they level fines up to $10,000 per day
· The department of Energy(DOE) continues to develop workforce guidelines for the federal Weatherization Assistance Program (WAP) without getting input from the industry that perform the work. The PHCC among other trade groups is requesting a hearing into this practice that has created problems in the past.
It was not all work and no play it was very exciting running all over Capitol Hill meeting with our Senators and Congressmen who actually wanted to see us. I don’t think there is many countries in the world were ordinary citizens would be allowed such privileges.
Bye for now