AAMA Pegs Government Regulations to Watch

Window & Door
March 2, 2013
Government
The American Architectural Manufacturers Association Regulatory Affairs Committee is actively monitoring a host of government codes and regulations on behalf of its members. The following items were reviewed at the association’s 76th Annual Conference in Tucson, March 24-27, 2013. For a full list and more details on the topics below, please contact AAMA
The RAC report included an update on the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Energy Star 6.0. For that update, please click here.

National legislation item: HR8 American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012; signed by the president, January 3, 2013

 

  • Extended the 10 percent fenestration tax credit (25c) for Energy Star-qualified products retroactively from January 1, 2012, through December 31, 2013.
  • Reinstated the credit for energy efficient new homes (45L) that offers contractors or developers a tax credit of up to $2,000 for the construction or significant renovation (meeting 2006 IECC standards) of dwelling units not exceeding three stories. This credit can be claimed for each unit.

Item: HR 243 Bowles-Simpson Plan of Lowering America’s Debt Act; introduced January 14, 2013

  • Seeks to repeal 25c, 45L, 179D (deduction for energy efficient commercial building property) and 48c
  • Referred to Committee on Ways and Means.

Item: 48c (ARRA)

  • The Department of Energy opened Phase II for additional project awards; $150 million in funding remains available; relaxed qualifications to include equipment for energy conservation. Offers a 30 percent investment tax credit.
  • Application period: February 7, 2013 through July 23, 2013.

Federal Trade Commission item: “Made in the USA”

The FTC has the power to bring law enforcement actions against false or misleading claims that a product is of U.S. origin. The act applies to any U.S. origin claims that appear on products and labeling, advertising and other promotional materials, along with electronic marketing. The guidance was released February 4, 2013.

  • Examples of express claims include: “Made in USA;” "Our products are American-made;” “USA”
  • The product should contain no — or negligible — foreign content
  • The product’s final assembly or processing also must take place in the U.S.
  • Using U.S. symbols, such as the flag or references to the location of a company’s headquarters, could imply a claim of U.S. origin.

EPA public meeting: June 26, 2013; details expected Spring 2013. Item: Chemical Safety and Reporting S847 – Safe Chemical Act of 2011

This shifts the burden, and costs, from EPA to chemical manufacturers to prove that substances are safe before they enter the marketplace; it also authorizes EPA to charge fees to chemical manufacturers. On December 27, 2012, it was reported on favorably with amendments by Environment and Public Works. For more on this topic pertaining to manufacturers, and also EPA S1660 – Formaldehyde Standards Act, contact AAMA.

Department of Homeland Security item: Resiliency Star

The department is investigating the development of a labeling program for resilience modeled after Energy Star that would consider community resilience in terms of structures.