CSE Training Facility, Legislative Report
NUCA of Virginia Completes Phase 1 Confined Space Training Facility for the Virginia Department of Fire Programs (VDFP)
NUCA of Virginia contractor W.C. Spratt of Fredericksburg, VA installed the first phase of a two phase concrete safety training facility for the Virginia Department of Fire Programs (VDFP) at the Virginia Public Safety Training Center (VPSTC) in Hanover, Virginia. The project
installation lasted three days from Tuesday, February 13th thru Thursday, February 15th.
The phase one structure is a facility to train fire fighters and heavy construction industry field personnel on confined space rescue. Phase 2 of the project will be the installation of a concrete ditch trench rescue training facility located next to the Phase 1 facility.
NUCA of Virginia associate member Concrete Pipe & Precast provided the concrete vaults, vault tops, concrete pipe, and frames and covers. Other participating NUCA of Virginia member firms who contributed to the project included the law firm of Watt, Tieder, Hoffar, Fitzgerald, of McLean, VA; United Rental Trench Safety's branch in Ashland, VA; and the Virginia Public Works Equipment Company of Richmond, VA.
NUCA Director of Education and Training Jim Stepahin emphasized the importance of the project:
"This project is a private-public partnership that was built at no cost to the VDFP or the VPSTC. It is critical that we support the firefighters of our state who will be the first to arrive at one of our member firms job sites if an emergency rescue is needed. In addition, this facility will be used by our industry to train our field workers to do the right things in the event of an emergency. You can't put a price tag on this facility. It is invaluable to our community and our industry."
It is our hope that other NUCA chapters across the nation will use this Virginia project as a template to work with fire departments to build a similar facility in the areas that they serve.
With just one week remaining until the scheduled March 10th adjournment, most of the legislative work is coming to a close. Most committees have now completed their work and several dozen bills remain pending before the full House and Senate. The legislature has approved more than 1000 bills so far and the governor has approved 60 of them. Over the next week, House and Senate budget conferees will be working to negotiate differences in their respective biennial budget proposals. There is a large difference between the two plans, mainly because of the differences in how they handle Medicaid expansion. On Thursday, Governor Northam sent a letter to the budget conferees encouraging them to include expansion and adjourn on time. While other matters are expected to be completed on time, conferees will likely need extra time beyond next week to negotiate the budget.
Below is a list of key legislation we are following that have been approved or will likely be approved by the General Assembly in the coming week. Additionally, you can click the link below to view the full list of bills that we have been monitoring this year. Please let us know if you have any questions.
HB82 - Habeeb - Repeals an enactment clause that provides that the maximum tax rate that may be assessed on insurance carriers or self-insured employers for the purpose of funding workers' compensation benefits that are awarded against uninsured employers from the Uninsured Employer's Fund will revert from 0.5 percent to 0.25 percent on July 1, 2018. Repealing the enactment will maintain the maximum rate at its current level of 0.5 percent.
HB117- Kilgore - Provides that the commissioners of the Workers' Compensation Commission, for purposes of constituting a quorum, shall include any deputy commissioner or retired commissioner who is appointed or recalled, respectively, to fill a vacancy on the Commission.
HB531- Habeeb - Removes the provision that prevents the Workers' Compensation Commission from aggregating proof of coverage information filed with the Commission by an insurance carrier or rate service organization on behalf of an employer with the proof of coverage information filed by or on behalf of other employers.
HB558- Habeeb - Clarifies that the "medical community," when referring to providers of medical services rendered under the Virginia Workers' Compensation Act outside of the Commonwealth, shall be determined by the zip code of the principal place of business of the employer if located in the Commonwealth. If the employer's principal place of business is not in the Commonwealth, then it shall be determined by the zip code of the location where the Workers' Compensation Commission would conduct its hearing regarding a dispute concerning the medical services.
HB399- Keam - Requires each school board to implement a plan to notify students and their parents of the availability of internships, externships, apprenticeships, credentialing programs, certification programs, licensure programs, and other work-based learning experiences.
HB544- Freitas - Permits each local school board to (i) establish High School to Work Partnerships (Partnerships) between public high schools and local businesses to create opportunities for high school students to (a) participate in an apprenticeship, internship, or job shadow program in a variety of trades and skilled labor positions or (b) tour local businesses and meet with owners and employees or (ii) delegate the authority to establish Partnerships to the local school division's career and technical education administrator or his designee, in collaboration with the guidance counselor office of each public high school in the school division. The bill requires such local school boards to educate high school students about opportunities available through such Partnerships. The bill also requires the Board of Education, the Department of Labor and Industry, and the State Board for Community Colleges to identify Partnerships that may be eligible for exemptions from certain federal and state labor laws and regulations and establish procedures by which such exemptions may be obtained for such Partnerships. This bill is identical to SB 960.
HB768- Jones - Establishes a floor on the 2.1 percent sales tax imposed on motor vehicle fuels sold in Northern Virginia and Hampton Roads. The average distributor price of gasoline, as determined by the Commissioner of the Department of Motor Vehicles, on June 1, 2018, shall be the initial floor. If the average distributor price rises in future determinations, the new higher average will become the floor, until such time as the average distributor price of gasoline is determined to be equal to or greater than the average wholesale price of gasoline in the Commonwealth on February 20, 2013, which is the date of the floor used for the calculation of the state gasoline tax. After this threshold is met, the average distributor price used for the calculation of the regional tax will be the same as the average price used to calculate the state tax.
HB1276 / SB504 - Garrett/Carrico - Requires the Department of Transportation to convene a work group to identify the implications of the Commonwealth's participation in a federal data collection pilot program or project involving six-axle tractor truck semitrailer combinations weighing up to 91,000 pounds and utilizing interstate highways.
HB905 - Robinson - Provides that a bidder, offeror, or contractor shall not improperly designate as trade secrets or proprietary information (i) an entire bid, proposal, or prequalification application; (ii) any portion of a bid, proposal, or prequalification application that does not contain trade secrets or proprietary information; or (iii) line item prices or total bid, proposal, or prequalification application prices. This bill is a recommendation of the Virginia Freedom of Information Advisory Council.