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Yesterday the Air Conditioning Contractors of America (ACCA) urged leaders in Congress to oppose Build Back Better legislation in its current form, which would raise taxes on small and independently owned businesses in order to pay for roughly $1.5 trillion in new spending. ACCA also expressed concern for the spending itself amid the most recent Consumer Price Index from the Department of Labor, which indicated 7% year over year inflation --the highest mark since 1982. The core of ACCA's message is simple: contractors are already dealing with significant supply chain disruptions, inflation, and labor shortages. These issues make it harder to do business ...
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Today the Supreme Court struck down President Biden's vaccine or test mandate for employers with 100+ employees in a 6-3 ruling. The mandate required that workers at businesses with 100 or more employees must get vaccinated or submit a negative Covid test weekly to enter the workplace. It also required unvaccinated workers to wear masks indoors at work and would have affected an estimated 80 million Americans.  The deciding justices stated in an unsigned opinion: "OSHA has never before imposed such a mandate. Nor has Congress. Indeed, although Congress has enacted significant legislation addressing the COVID–19 pandemic, it has declined to enact any measure ...
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You're invited to join ACCA's government relations team and Kyle Gargaro of ACHR NEWS for a town hall meeting at ACCA 2022 Conference and Expo in St. Louis . You'll have the opportunity to give direct input to ACCA on the issues that affect your business most and also to learn about what ACCA has been working on and how it impacts you. The meeting will be held on Tuesday March 29 at noon during the General Session. We hope to see you there!
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Today the Supreme Court is hearing oral arguments regarding President Biden's OSHA vaccine mandate for employers with 100+ employees. Since it was issued, the order has been both overturned and reinstated by federal courts. The Supreme Court's decision to either uphold or strike down the mandate will be the final say regarding the policy.  If you'd like to learn more about the mandate and what it means for employers with 100+ employees, you can find a comprehensive guide from OSHA here .
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On Friday the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit lifted the stay of OSHA's vaccination, testing, and face covering emergency temporary standard (ETS), meaning that it is set to go into effect. The Biden Administration has announced that it plans to enforce the ETS starting on January 10, 2021. In response to the decision, 27 State Attorneys General as well as many other private groups and individuals filed an emergency application for a stay of the standard, meaning that it will continue to be processed through the courts. The vaccine mandate for federal contractors remains paused pending further action in federal court. ACCA will continue to update ...
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ACCA recently submitted a proposal to revise the International Energy Conservation Code (IECC). ACCA’s Codes Subcommittee developed the proposal to add air balancing as an exception to the code requirement to leak test ducts located inside conditioned space. The proposed exception would require duct systems to be balanced so the individual room airflow is within the greater of ± 20%, or 25 CFM of the design/application requirements for the supply and return ducts. Those values are specified by ACCA 5 QI, HVAC Quality Installation Specification . The proposal applies to Chapter 11, Energy Efficiency , in the 2021 International Residential Code (IRC), which is ...
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Yesterday I had the pleasure of meeting with Congressman Mike Carey (OH-15) and his staff in his DC office to discuss issues affecting the HVAC-R industry including workforce, taxes, the AIM Act, and the EPA's ban on refillable cylinders . Congressman Carey is the newest member of the House of Representatives. He was sworn into office into office on November 4th after winning  a special election to fill the seat of Congressman Steve Stivers, who retired to lead the Ohio Chamber of Commerce.  Congressman Carey represents Ohio's 15th Congressional District, which includes a portion of Columbus, in addition to several counties in central Ohio. He serves on ...
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ACCA has partnered with Heating, Air-conditioning and Refrigeration Distributors International (HARDI) and Plumbing-Heating-Cooling Contractors Association (PHCC) in filing a petition to overturn the EPA's ban on the use of disposable cylinders for HFC refrigerants, which we believe exceeds the authority granted to EPA under the AIM Act.  The ban is currently set to be implemented  between 2025 and 2027. This is the latest step ACCA has taken to oppose the ban. You may recall that ACCA filed a public comment on the EPA's rule in July, urging them not to ban the use of disposable cylinders. The initial filing of the petition for review with the D.C. Circuit ...
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Yesterday a federal judge in Georgia has temporarily halted President Biden's COVID-19 vaccine mandate for federal contractors nationwide. You may have seen last week that a federal judge in Kentucky blocked the mandate for federal contractors in Kentucky, Ohio, and Tennessee. This week's decision stops the policy in the rest of the country as challenges to the mandate continue to process through federal courts.  ACCA will continue to keep members up to date as more information becomes available.
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Yesterday a federal judge in Kentucky issued a ruling halting the Biden Administration's vaccine mandate in Kentucky, Ohio, and Tennessee. The judge stated in his order, "Can the president use congressionally delegated authority to manage the federal procurement of goods and services to impose vaccines on the employees of federal contractors and subcontractors. In all likelihood, the answer to that question is no." The mandate for federal contractors requires any full-time or part-time employee of a contractor or subcontractor working on or in connection with a federal contract, or working at a covered contractor or subcontractor workplace, to be vaccinated. ...
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The IRS has published the following tips and guidelines regarding depreciation of property deduction ahead of tax season: Depreciation is an annual tax deduction that allows small businesses to recover the cost or other basis of certain property over the time they use the property. It is an allowance for the wear and tear, deterioration or obsolescence of the property. Small businesses can depreciate property when they place it in service for use in their trade or business or to produce income. The business stops depreciating property when they have fully recovered their cost or other basis or when they retire it from service, whichever happens ...
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On Monday the Department of Labor finalized a rule that requires workers on contracts with the federal government be paid at least $15/hr. The rule will apply to contracts signed  after January 30, 2022. Contracts signed  before  this date will not be affected, regardless of contract duration. The current minimum wage for federal contractors is $10.95.
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Thank you to the contractors who responded to our “Help Us Serve You Better!” survey. We found your feedback to be extremely helpful and look forward to serving you better. Our program moving forward looks bright! What are we doing to improve the QA Program?   First, we are taking steps to make our  QA Contractor Directory  Requests for Information emails clearer and more useful for the contractor. QA Contractors are receiving a lot of requests for information through our QA Contractor Directory. In fact, through recent months, there were 678 requests for information sent to QA accredited contractors, and we hope our email improvement makes it easier ...
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Last month, the NFPA National Electrical Code (NEC) "Code-Making Panel 2" held a virtual meeting to consider proposed changes to the 2020 NEC to prepare for the 2023 edition of the code. Several proposals were submitted to add an exception to 210.8(F) to exempt outdoor HVAC equipment from GFCI protection due to nuisance trips in the field. One such proposal was developed by ACCA’s Codes Subcommittee, and recognized that outdoor equipment has been safely installed to a disconnect switch per the NEC for many decades. In addition, the Air-Conditioning, Heating, and Refrigeration Institute (AHRI) submitted a similar proposal, accompanied by engineering data showing ...
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On Friday the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals issued an opinion upholding its decision to temporarily halt President Biden's vaccine and testing mandate for employers which was originally set to take effect on January 4, 2021. The decision casts further doubt on the rule's future, which will continue to make its way through the courts in the coming weeks and months. As you may recall, the mandate requires employers with 100 or more employees to verify that all employees have been fully vaccinated or test negative for COVID every week. Employers are also required to provide paid time off for workers to get vaccinated and sick leave to recover from any ...
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Last week Congressman Bob Latta (R-OH) introduced H.R. 5845, the SMART Energy Efficiency Standards Act , which would ease confusion regarding DOE’s 2023 regional standard energy efficiency requirements for all new residential central air-conditioning and air-source heat pump systems sold in the United States. The bill would change the compliance date for all new equipment from the date of installation to the date of manufacture . Congressman Latta (as well as the HVAC-R industry) hope that this legislation will keep existing supply chain constraints from becoming needlessly worse. “With current supply chain issues and delays, consumers need to be able ...
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UPDATE: The U.S. Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals has ordered President Biden's vaccine mandate to be temporarily halted pending review. The court cited potentially " grave statutory and constitutional issues with the mandate," as reason for the order. While the mandate's fate is unclear, the temporary pause comes as no surprise given the growing number of entities opposing the order in court including at least 11 states' attorneys general as well as various non-governmental organizations. The legal battle is far from over as the Biden Administration and Department of Labor have indicated that they are "fully prepared to defend the order in court." The Biden ...
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ACCA pressed the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) at the Center for Disease Control (CDC) for clarification on exactly who is eligible for COVID-19 booster shots , and requested that HVAC-R professionals be specifically included under their guidance of, "people who work or live in high-risk settings ages 18-64 years."This is defined as individuals who are at risk of COVID-19 exposure because of occupational or institutional settings. ACCA asserted that as frontline, essential workers HVAC-R contractors and other professionals should be included specifically on the CDC's list which already includes first responders, education staff, postal ...
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Today ACCA urged leaders in Congress to oppose any policy that would increase taxes for small and independently owned businesses. You may have heard that Congress is considering raising taxes in a number of ways for small businesses in order to pay for a proposed budget deal and infrastructure package. Policies being considered include increasing the top individual tax rate from 37% to 39.6% for individuals and pass-through businesses with over $452,700 in taxable income and $509,300 if filing jointly as well as effectively ending the 199A deduction for qualified business income for pass-through businesses.  ACCA also pushed Congress to do away with a proposed ...
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Here are some highlights from the ICC Mechanical Code Public Comment Hearings that took place last month in Pittsburgh. Despite ACCA testimony in favor of its modified proposal to add permanent attic stairs for servicing HVAC equipment in new construction, the code officials in attendance voted to reject. The National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) once again voiced opposition. ACCA’s Codes Subcommittee had developed the proposal based on an amendment to the Georgia building code that was effective January 2020. Based on comments and testimony from ACCA and other parties, a proposal to require new HVAC systems to be designed to accommodate MERV 13 ...
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