NewsAnalysis: REGULATORY AGENCIES  
What’s in Store for the EPA and  
OSHA Under a Trump Administration?  
or the glazing industry, the elec-  
tion of Donald Trump casts the  
spotlight on one of his biggest  
campaign pledges: the elimination of  
the Environmental Protection Agency  
F
(
EPA), whose Energy Star standards are  
used to certify doors,windows and sky-  
lights.Likewise,Scott Pruitt,the Repub-  
lican attorney general of Oklahoma and  
Trump’s nomination to lead the EPA, is  
also one of the agency’s fiercest critics.  
“We are going to get rid of it (the  
EPA) in almost every form,” Trump  
said during the GOP primary debate in  
March 2016.“We’re going to have little  
tidbits left,but we’re going to take a tre-  
mendous amount out.”  
Trump’s current energy policy has  
a lot to say about boosting domestic as it does about energy supply, mainly environmental groups.  
production of oil, natural gas and coal, because it’s a subject he calls “fairly  
but little about improving energy effi- non-controversial.”  
ciency in buildings. However, there are  
“For too long, the Environmental  
Protection Agency has spent taxpayer  
“It’s something everyone likes,” he dollars on an out-of-control anti-en-  
hints that things such as green con- says.“Energy efficiency is about saving ergy agenda that has destroyed mil-  
struction codes or the Energy Star pro- energy and saving money and creat- lions of jobs, while also undermining  
gram might not change radically under ing more comfortable homes. I think our incredible farmers and many other  
the Trump administration.  
that is non-controversial, and because businesses and industries at every  
what the future holds, but the volun- much attention from the press.”  
It’s obviously very difficult to know it’s non-controversial it hasn’t merited turn,” Trump said in a statement an-  
nouncing Pruitt’s nomination. “As my  
tary Energy Star program is pretty  
broadly popular with builders and now part of the status quo—and will reverse this trend and restore the EPA’s  
manufacturers around the country remain that way. essential mission of keeping our air  
who like it and use it, so I think that “In general, you’ll see a lot of efforts and our water clean and safe.”  
kind of broad industry support is likely going toward new energy production “We are looking forward to working  
That also means energy efficiency is EPA administrator … Pruitt … will  
to be something that would carry the in the United States, and you’re not with the new administrator once the  
day with the Trump administration,” going to see a lot of attention given to confirmation process is complete,”said  
says Cliff Majersik, executive director energy codes or Energy Star or other Kevin McKenney, director of govern-  
of the Institute for Market Transforma- programs,” Majersik says. “Programs ment affairs for the Window and Door  
tion (IMT), a Washington, D.C.-based like Energy Star,I would expect that you Manufacturers Association (WDMA).  
organization focused on improving en- won’t see dramatic changes with them. “We are optimistic that opportuni-  
ergy efficiency in buildings.“I think it’s  
In the past, Pruitt has taken legal ties to address the regulatory burden  
pretty unlikely that they would elimi- action against the EPA. As Oklahoma’s currently facing manufacturers will  
nate the Energy Star program, or even attorney general, he sued the agency emerge, and WDMA will continue to  
make fundamental changes.”  
Majersik says the public just doesn’t also took part in a case that claimed mon-sense solutions.”  
think about energy efficiency as much the agency has a cozy relationship with  
Changes within the Department of  
over its power plant regulations. He engage EPA on implementing com-  
28  
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Labor (DOL) could also impact the  
glazing industry. Some legal experts  
say Andrew Puzder, Trump’s nominee  
to lead the DOL,could roll back unpop-  
ular regulations handed down recently  
by the department’s OSHA.  
Last May, OSHA implemented the  
“Improve Tracking of Workplace In-  
juries and Illnesses” rule. It requires  
employers in high-hazard industries,  
including manufacturing and construc-  
tion, to send injury and illness data  
straight to OSHA every year.The agency  
will then post that information on its  
website. The new requirements took ef-  
fect in August 2016,with phased-in data  
submissions beginning in 2017.  
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by employers about these changes,”  
Edwin Foulke, Jr., co-chair of the Fisher  
Phillips law firm’s Workplace Safety  
and Catastrophe Management Practice  
Group and a former head of OSHA, told  
JD Supra, a news organization focused  
on the regulatory landscape.  
Likewise, OSHA created a stir last  
March when it issued the final version  
of its controversial silica rule, which  
aims to limit workers’ exposure to  
crystalline silica. The rule, which has  
been in the works since 2013, reduces  
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the permissible exposure limit (PEL) pliance is nearly impossible,” Foulke  
Additionally, Puzder has expressed  
for respirable crystalline silica to 50 told JD Supra,adding that the standard opposition to the DOL’s overtime rule.  
micrograms per cubic meter of air, av- is likely to be scrapped or radically re- The regulation was scheduled to take  
eraged over an eight-hour shift. It also vised under Puzder.  
requires employers to implement engi-  
neering controls, offer medical exams move away from the sole focus of en-  
effect on December 1, but a lawsuit  
Foulke also believes that OSHA will blocked its implementation.  
The rule would have increased the  
and develop a control plan.  
The construction sector has pushed and compliance assistant” mode.  
back hard against the new regulation,  
“I believe that Secretary of Labor per week ($23,360 annually) to an es-  
forcement to more of an “enforcement salary level under which employees  
qualify for overtime pay from $455  
and last April, eight industry organiza- Puzder will look at the use of the joint timated $913 per week ($47,476 annu-  
tions filed a petition for review of the employer doctrine in the OSHA setting, ally). In addition, the rule would have  
rule with the U.S. Court of Appeals for scaling back some of the aggressive provided for automatic updates to the  
the Fifth Circuit.  
positions taken by the Obama admin- threshold every three years.  
—Trey Barrineau s  
Some employers believe that com- istration,” Foulke said.  
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January 2017 | USGlass, Metal & Glazing  
29  

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