Construction Reimbursement: Asbestos Abatement Plans

RI General Laws, 23-24.5-6. Asbestos abatement plans.

[View complete Chapter 23-24.5, Asbestos Abatement]

§ 23-24.5-6. Asbestos abatement plans. – a) The owner of any public or private building containing friable asbestos material in violation of this chapter who shall, within one hundred twenty (120) days of notice of the violation, file an abatement plan with the director, shall be relieved of liability for the violation during the abatement process. For buildings in the high and immediate priority group found by the director or the director's agents to require abatement after inspection, the director shall so notify in writing, in the case of public buildings, the appropriate public agency or elected, appointed, or employed official with jurisdiction over the building; or, in the case of a private building, the owner or manager of the building.

(b) That person or agency shall, within one hundred twenty (120) days of the notice, file an asbestos abatement plan with the director. Such a plan shall describe in detail the results of any asbestos detection tests performed, a blueprint of the structure involved, a program designed to:

(i) Monitor the physical conditions of asbestos containing materials,

(ii) To educate the building staff and occupants regarding the presence of asbestos,

(iii) To minimize the likelihood of fiber release, and

(iv) To minimize the potential of human exposure to asbestos.

(2) The plan should further include a description of the remedies proposed, including but not limited to repair, enclosure or encapsulation, and/or removal, the process of selection and criteria for hiring licensed contractors, a time schedule for completion, disposal location, and the level of compliance with exposure and action criteria expected to be achieved.

(3) The requirement for filing an asbestos abatement plan with the director prior to the removal of any friable asbestos material shall be waived whenever a public building, private building, or residence has been ordered demolished by a municipal building official in accordance with § 23-27.3-125.5; provided that all friable asbestos material is removed from the building prior to demolition by a licensed asbestos contractor following an asbestos abatement plan previously approved by the director specifically for the demolition of unsafe structures. The director may require the filing of whatever documentation may be deemed necessary to insure that compliance with the act has been met.

(c) The director shall, within ninety (90) days of submission of a plan, either approve, amend, or reject the plan of abatement.

(d) Within one hundred eighty (180) days after July 1, 1985, the director shall issue regulations establishing criteria for the inspection of buildings, identification and evaluation of asbestos hazard, the ranking of asbestos abatement, and the development of abatement plans.

(e) The owner of any building failing to comply with an order of abatement issued by the director, after hearing, shall be fined by the director an amount not exceeding two thousand five hundred dollars ($2,500) a day and/or having the area in violation subject to closure. No fine shall apply if access to the area is limited to individuals designated as competent persons for the area or certified as consultants in accordance with rules or regulations promulgated pursuant to the authority conferred by this chapter.

(f) The director may assess fees for review of asbestos abatement plans submitted in accordance with rules or regulations promulgated pursuant to the authority conferred by this section, provided that those fees are assessed only after procedures in accordance with chapter 35 of title 42 have been followed.

(g) Any approval of an asbestos abatement plan issued in accordance with rules or regulations promulgated pursuant to the authority conferred by this section shall become invalid unless the work authorized by that approval shall have been commenced within six (6) months after its issuance; provided that, for cause, an extension of time for a period not exceeding ninety (90) days has not been granted. All extensions must be in writing and signed by the director or his or her designee. For the purposes of this section, any approval issued shall not be considered invalid if the suspension or abandonment is due to a court order prohibiting that work as authorized by that approval.

(h) Notwithstanding any approval issued by the director in accordance with rules or regulations promulgated pursuant to the authority conferred by this section, all abatement activity performed in conjunction with an approved asbestos abatement plan must be in compliance with the most current revision of all applicable federal, state, and local regulations, unless that approval already requires compliance with a more restrictive standard.

(i) The director may revoke any approval issued in accordance with rules or regulations promulgated pursuant to the authority conferred by this section in the event that the granting of the approval was based upon statements which prove to be false or based on misrepresentation of fact. Any aggrieved party shall have the right to a hearing on any such revocation. The request for a hearing shall be in writing and shall be made within ten (10) days of the decision.

(j) Except as otherwise provided in (b)(iv) above, all renovation and/or demolition activities involving asbestos containing material (ACM) shall be assumed to produce friable ACM and shall require department approval of an asbestos abatement plan prior to undertaking said renovation and/or demolition activity.

For the complete text of the Asbestos Abatement law, refer to the Rhode Island General Laws, Chapter 23-24.5, Asbestos Abatement.

Asbestos Control Program

The RI Asbestos Control Program is located in the Department of Health's Office of Occupational Health, Indoor Air Quality Program. The Rhode Island Asbestos Act  (Title 23-24.5) is designed to protect both the general public that occupies buildings where asbestos containing materials are located, as well as the workers who perform asbestos abatement activities.

The Asbestos Control Program staff is responsible for implementing the provisions of the Rhode Island Rules and Regulations for Asbestos Control [pdf, 81 pages].