ATLANTA - Primarily fueled by worry over indoor mold growth, 2003 was one of most active years for indoor air quality (IAQ) state legislative initiatives, with mold reigning as the top IAQ issue. This year, however, attention seems to be focused more on IAQ in schools and in public buildings rather than on mold, according to a preview of the 2004 state legislative season provided by Aerias, an online resource for IAQ information and education.

In 2003, 27 state legislatures considered more than 60 pieces of IAQ-related legislation, with 18 becoming law. Some are predicting another active year in 2004. At this point, says Aerias, the upcoming state legislative season looks quieter, but then it is early with legislative activity just getting under way.

Highlights of bills already proposed, notes Aerias, include a comprehensive school IAQ bill in Florida that would require each school district to adopt and implement an IAQ management program as well as uniform IAQ inspections and evaluations. A proposed bill in New Hampshire would mandate the state's Department of Education to develop and implement IAQ standards for public elementary and secondary schools. In Pennsylvania, a bill to set minimum IAQ and ventilation standards for all places of employment is presently working its way through committee.

Mold certification and training are still of interest to legislators, with Wisconsin, Kentucky, and Florida already working on proposed bills to ensure that those who assess and remediate mold in indoor environments are properly trained. Also, this month a 28-member Oklahoma task force authorized during last year's legislative session is reporting its findings on mold and mold remediation issues to the Oklahoma legislature.

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Publication date: 02/09/2004