(H & S Code section 26100 et seq.)
SB 732 focuses on actions targeted at resolving problems related to buildings with mold colonization. In part, it requires DHS to:
Convene a task force to advise DHS on the development of standards pursuant to Health and Safety Code sections 26103, 26105, 16120 and 26130.
Adopt standards to assess the health threat posed by the presence of mold; and to establish guidelines for identification of mold, visible or hidden in an indoor environment, and for the remediation of mold.
The budget trailer bill (AB 442) provides that DHS may receive and utilize voluntary donations into the Public Health Protection from Indoor Mold Hazards Fund created in the State Treasury (Fund). These funds are to support DHS activities in providing guidance, developing standards and guidelines and permissible exposure limits, and adopting regulations relating to indoor mold hazards, including, but not limited to, duties included in SB 732.
DHS proposes to implement this work plan provided sufficient donations are made to the Fund. It anticipates a need for $964,000 to operate its two phases of overlapping tasks covering a 2.5 year period. Although the plan utilizes the task force as advisory, as required by SB 732, and proposes contract staff and consultants to implement some of its tasks, this plan is not dependent upon the source(s) of voluntary donations for direction.
Future phases will depend upon the results of phases I and II, advice from the Task Force, and available funding. The Task Force may identify areas for work or research to be completed in the future. The Task Force will advise DHS on the selection of specific projects such as surveys of the prevalence of indoor mold problems; validation of mold testing technologies (for example, PCR or mycotoxin assays); or feasibility study on research needed to resolve controversy concerning more serious and rare health problems alleged to result from mold exposure.
At all times, contractors will be selected pursuant to the Public Contract Code and any extant Executive Orders and Management Memoranda.
Task 1 DHS Staff advises DHS Director in appointing and convening task force.
Staffing DHS staff
Time 6 months; February July
Task 2a DHS requests specific data from the insurance industry regarding mold-related claims to determine (a) the incidence of such claims in California and (b) the geographic distribution and other characteristics of mold related claims.
Task 2b DHS analyzes the mold-related claims information to assist in development of educational messages and examine the need for additional policy or regulatory action.
Staffing contract staff to be hired to work under the direction of DHS staff.
Time (hire contract staff) 1 month; March
(data gathering) 1-2 months; April June
(analysis) 1-2 months June July
Task 3 DHS drafts regulatory proposals on SB 732-mandated topics and on primary prevention proposals related to building construction and maintenance with input from Task Force.
Staffing - Contract staff to be hired to work under the direction of DHS staff.
Time 7 months; June January
Task 4 Draft report which includes consensus recommendations for regulation, areas of disagreement and areas requiring further information.
Staffing - contract staff to be hired to work under the direction of DHS staff.
Time 3 months; December February
Task 5 Draft and promulgate regulations on consensus items.
Staffing DHS staff
Time 12-18 months; February February
Task 6 Prepare and conduct training sessions for local health and code enforcement officials.
Staffing Contract staff to be hired to work under the direction of DHS staff.
Time Ongoing; Begin August
The completion time for each of these tasks is dependent on the availability of funding through voluntary public contributions to the Public Health Protection from Indoor Mold Hazards Fund. Delays may occur if contributions do not cover projected costs or if administrative processes are delayed.
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