Extension from EPA RRP Rule

EPA has extended the training expiration date for many certified renovators. This was done so if the proposed changes of January 2015 are finalized, many more renovators will be able to take advantage of those changes. Affected expiration dates are based on when the previous course was taken (see table below).

Note: The extensions do not apply to firm certifications.

  Renovator Training Expiration Information
Date course completed Expiration 
On or before
March 31, 2010
March 31, 2016
From April 1, 2010
– March 31, 2011
6 years from the date of course completion
On or after
April 1, 2011
No extension provided – Expiration is 5 years from the date of course completion

Renovator certification expiration date is July 1, 2015

epa_leadsafecertfirm__2Renovator certification is typically for 5 years from the date of course completion. However, in 2009, EPA extended the 5-year certification of renovators who took an EPA accredited renovator training before April 22, 2010 until July 1, 2015. The extension ensured that renovators who received training early, before the regulations work practice standards were effective, weren’t penalized for doing so. Renovators seeking re-certification who complete a 4-hour refresher training before the expiration of their current certification are certified for a period of five years from the date they complete the refresher course, not from the date of expiration of their previous certification. Renovators will have to take the 8-hour course if they fail to take the refresher training before the expiration of their current certificate.

Residential Pool/Spa Servicing Specialty Contractors

New License…

The Construction Industry Licensing Board has developed a new specialty license for the repair and servicing of residential swimming pools, hot tubs or spas. The scope of work permitted to be performed by a residential pool/spa servicing specialty contractor can be found in Rule 61G4-15.040, Florida Administrative Code.

Previously, most contractors providing such services were required to obtain a certified pool/spa servicing contractor’s license under s. 489.105(3)(l), F.S., which required experience in servicing and repair of both residential and commercial pools. Many contractors who specialized in the repair and servicing of only residential pools, spas and hot tubes were unable to obtain licensure or were required to obtain local competency cards in each local jurisdiction. The CILB developed the certified residential pool/spa servicing specialty contractor category to permit licensure of these contractors on a state wide basis.

Unlicensed Contractors

Richard Elzey states the following are red flags for Unlicensed contractors:

  • newspaper ads that don’t list the contractor’s certification number
  • a large down payment is required (If you are doing a big job, the Consumer Watchdog recommends you pay the supplier. That way you know the building supplies were paid for and nobody can come after you if your contractor doesn’t pay the bill.)
  • Statements like “it will be cheaper if you obtain your own permit”
  • Verbal contracts
  • The contractor works on weekends or after hours
  • A building permit is obtained by someone other than the contractor

When ever you see this report to “Code Enforcement”. A lot of people think… they can do it cheaper. But what happens when they 1/2 do it or take the money and run? You have very little recourse to get your money back.

Swimming Poll Exams are NOW CBT

All Swimming Pool Categories (Commercial, Residential, and Service), Solar and Irrigation Trade Knowledge examinations are projected to move to computer based testing (CBT) starting March 2014!

This has been something I’ve been asking for. Before a pool contractor could only test 3 out of the 6 exams given each year. Meaning if they failed the exam they had to wait 4 months to retake the test, everyone else only had to wait 2 months.

Now these contractors can schedule when, and where (20 location around Florida) they want to test. Person Vue also has many out of state computer centers as well. This is a big break through in testing for these exams! Good LUCK!

61G4-15.032 Certification of Swimming Pool Specialty Contractors.

skimmer-replacmentFor the FULL Rule Click Here

(1) Scope of Rule. The scope of this rule is to provide for the voluntary certification of swimming pool specialty contractors.

(a) Swimming pool specialty contractors may only perform the services within the scope of work defined for that particular category swimming pool specialty contractor.

(b) Swimming pool specialty contractors must work under contract, under the supervision, and within the scope of work of a contractor licensed pursuant to Sections 489.105(3)(j)-(l), F.S.

(c) Each category of swimming pool specialty contractor contained in this rule constitutes a separate license and obtaining licensure in all swimming pool specialty contractor categories shall not entitle a person to licensure as a contractor as defined in Sections 489.105(3)(j)-(l), F.S.

(2) Definition.

(a) A “Swimming Pool Layout Specialty Contractor” means a swimming pool specialty contractor whose scope of work is limited to the layout, shaping, steel installation, and rough piping of pools, spas, and hot tub shells.

(b) A “Swimming Pool Structural Specialty Contractor” means a swimming pool specialty contractor whose scope of work is limited to the shaping and shooting of gunite, shotcrete, concrete, or similar product mix used in the construction of swimming pools and spas. This scope of work includes the installation of fiberglass shells and vinyl liners.

(c) A “Swimming Pool Excavation Specialty Contractor” means a swimming pool specialty contractor whose scope of work is limited to the excavation and earthmoving required for the installation of pools, spas, and hot tub shells.

(d) A “Swimming Pool Trim Specialty Contractor” means a swimming pool specialty contractor whose scope of work is limited to the installation of tile and coping for pools, spas, and hot tub shells. Decorative or interactive water displays or areas that use recirculated water, including waterfalls and spray nozzles, are also included in this rule within this scope of work.

(e) A “Swimming Pool Decking Specialty Contractor” means a swimming pool specialty contractor whose scope of work is limited to the construction and installation of concrete flatwork, pavers and bricks, retaining walls, and footings associated with the construction of pools, spas, and hot tub shells.

(f) A “Swimming Pool Piping Specialty Contractor” means a swimming pool specialty contractor whose scope of work is limited to the installation of piping or the installation of circulating, filtering, disinfecting, controlling, or monitoring equipment and devices used in the construction of pools, spas, hot tubs, and decorative or interactive water displays or areas.

(g) A “Swimming Pool Finishes Specialty Contractor” means a swimming pool specialty contractor whose scope of work is limited to the coating or plastering of the interior surfaces of pools, spas, or hot tub shells.

News from the State of Florida

Last week, the Department partnered with several local agencies and the Department of Financial Services in an undercover operation in the Manatee County area seeking unlicensed individuals who were offering or advertising to perform construction work that they did not have a proper license to perform. As a result of the operation, nine individuals advertising as handymen were issued cease and desist notices from DBPR and the cases were turned over to the local State Attorney for prosecution.

A criminal offense of unlicensed activity can result in misdemeanor or felony charges if an individual is convicted. Floridians should report any suspected unlicensed activity by emailing ULA@myfloridalicense.com or calling the Unlicensed Activity Hotline at 1-866-532-1440. Additionally, before you hire anyone to perform services that require a license, be sure to verify their professional license on our website at www.myfloridalicense.com.

Florida Homeowners’ Construction Recovery Fund Receives Additional Funding

Picture-28Pursuant to House Bill 57 (2013), the Department of Business and Professional Regulation will be permitted to transfer additional funds in the to Florida Homeowners’ Construction Recovery Fund (Recovery Fund) to pay outstanding recovery claims during the 2013-2014 fiscal year. Based on the additional funding, Governor Rick Scott and the Florida Legislature have approved an $8 million dollar annual appropriation for payment of Recovery Fund claims.

Due to the previous economic downturn in the construction industry, the Recovery Fund received insufficient funds to pay all Florida Homeowners’ Construction Recovery Fund claims in the same years that they were received. The Department is diligently working to resolve the resulting backlog of recovery fund claims and will make payments as funds become available. The Recovery Fund has a total of 589 completed claims awaiting review by the Construction Industry Licensing Board (CILB) with a total approximate value of $13,153,267.45. DBPR anticipates that the additional appropriation will permit 364 outstanding claims to be presented to the CILB for approval and payment.

YA…We can pay 61% of the claims! Why?  I’m not sure but it’s GREAT!

Refusing to hire smokers

cigarettesjustice180_0The Florida Supreme Court has ruled that a public employer can legitimately refuse to hire smokers. The City of North Miami implemented a policy in 1990 that required job applicants to sign a sworn statement that they had not smoked for at least a year prior to their application for employment with the city. One job applicant challenged the policy in court after she was not hired by the city as a clerk-typist because she had refused to sign the statement. The applicant claimed that the policy violated her Florida constitutional rights by prohibiting her from smoking in the privacy of her own home. The Supreme Court held that the policy could be enforced because the applicant did not have a legitimate expectation of privacy concerning smoking given the variety of ways in which smoking is prohibited in public. The Court reasoned that the multitude of existing smoking regulations had essentially reduced an individual’s expectation of privacy on the issue of smoking when applying for a government job. The Court was not willing to expand the decision to private employment. However, to date, smokers in Florida have no statutory protection. Employers can refuse to hire applicants who smoke. Likewise, most employers, subject to a few exceptions, can ban smoking on their premises if they choose, including outdoor areas.