NYC Dept. of Buildings’ Moratorium on Wellness Regulations Expires July 8, 2020

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The New York City Department of Buildings (DOB) previously issued a restart guidance for resumption of construction. The guidance can be found at https://www1.nyc.gov/assets/buildings/pdf/restart_enforcement_guidance.pdf.

Pursuant to the guidance, construction projects subject to permits issued by the DOB, or otherwise regulated by the New York City Construction Codes and the New York City Electrical Code, may proceed provided such projects comply with the Interim Guidance for Construction Activities During the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency issued by New York State (https://www.governor.ny.gov/sites/governor.ny.gov/files/atoms/files/ConstructionMasterGuidance.pdf). The initial 30-day moratorium in which violations would not carry a financial penalty expires July 8, 2020.

In accordance with the Mayor’s Emergency Executive Order No. 120 and Executive Order No. 123, the DOB will periodically check construction sites for compliance with employer safety plans required by the Interim Guidance, including, but not limited to, the following requirements:

  • Completed New York State Forward Business Affirmation for reopening (https://forms.ny.gov/s3/ny-forward-affirmation).
  • Completed New York Forward Safety Plan(s) that should be conspicuously posted on-site and include a copy of the submitted New York State affirmation. (https://www.governor.ny.gov/sites/governor.ny.gov/files/atoms/files/NYS_BusinessReopeningSafetyPlanTemplate.pdf).
  • Providing adequate numbers of hand hygiene stations available on site and readily accessible to workers.
  • Maintaining 6 feet of social distance between personnel unless safety or core function of the work activity requires a shorter distance.
  • Face coverings for all personnel, and visitors to construction sites, appropriate for their task, except for those medically unable to do so.
  • Tightly confined spaces (e.g., elevators, hoists) occupied by no more than 50% of the normally allowable number of persons or weight. Signs for 50% capacity must be posted within the cab and at each landing.
  • Designating a site safety monitor, whose responsibilities include continuous compliance with all aspects of the site safety plan.
  • Appropriate signage posted throughout the site to remind personnel to adhere to proper hand hygiene, physical distancing rules, appropriate use of personal protective equipment, and cleaning and disinfecting protocols.
  • Having a communication plan for employees, visitors and clients available at the site.
  • Maintaining continuous logs at the work site of every person who may have had close contact with other individuals at the work site or area.
  • Maintaining daily cleaning and disinfection log and keeping such log at the site.

Violations of the regulations will result in financial penalties, and further noncompliance may result in Stop Work Orders and summonses with accompanying civil penalties of up to $5,000 for each offense. Accordingly, please be sure to have the proper safety plans on site, file the affirmations required and ensure compliance with the Interim Guidance.

DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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