New Bill Proposes Green Cleaning Mandates In Wisconsin

Following the same path taken by neighboring Illinois, Wisconsin may be the next state to mandate the use of green cleaning products and processes in public educational buildings and municipalities.

The "Green Cleaning For A Healthier Wisconsin" bill, proposed by Rep. Cory Mason, D-Racine, Wis., would require public educational buildings to use cleaning and paper products certified as environmentally sensitive by third-party certifiers, including Green Seal, EcoLogo, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Design for the Environment (DfE) Program, Greenguard Environmental Institute and the Carpet and Rug Institute (CRI).

"This is a great bill that helps schools and local communities make their buildings less toxic for kids and the public who use them, and reduces our carbon footprint in the state of Wisconsin," says Mason.

After the green cleaning bill received backlash from opposition in its initial stages, an amended version was approved by the Assembly Committee on Natural Resources in the final week of January. The recent amendment would give schools and municipalities three years to comply and allows agencies to opt out if they demonstrate that their cleaning costs would increase.

If signed into law, the Wisconsin bill would apply to general purpose cleaners, restroom cleaners, glass cleaners, floor and carpet cleaners, hand soap, toilet tissue and paper towels, vacuum cleaners, carpet extractors and laundry care products.

The plan does not prohibit the use of disinfectants, sanitizers or any other antimicrobial products registered under federal law that, when necessary, are needed to protect public health.

The plan also would require public educational institutions and municipalities to adopt cleaning systems (products, equipment and instructions for specified cleaning use) that meet the standards set forth by one of the following organizations: U.S. Green Building Council's Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design for Existing Buildings: Operations and Maintenance (LEED-EBOM); Green Seal's Environmental Standard for Commercial and Institutional Cleaning Services (GS-42); Healthy School Campaign's Quick and Easy Guide to Green Cleaning In Schools; ISSA's Cleaning Industry Management Standard - Green Building (CIMS-GB); and Greenguard's Children and Schools standard.

The bill is scheduled to come before full Assembly for a vote.

If enacted, the bill would take effect on July 1, 2011. Agencies would have two years to adopt approved products and three years to implement an approved cleaning system.

As of February, 10 states have passed legislation either recommending or requiring green cleaning. Similar bills are expected to be debated this year in at least five states, including Wisconsin.

Study Shows Market Is Down, But Growth Is On The Horizon

As building service contractors already know, 2009 was not an easy year for the contract cleaning industry. According to the study "The U.S. Commercial and Residential Cleaning Services Industry" by Marketdata Enterprises Inc., Tampa, Fla., industry receipts are estimated to have declined by 3.5 percent last year.

However, the report indicates that the future looks brighter. The industry should see moderate growth in 2010 as the economy recovers and yearly gains are expected to rise 5.2 percent by 2013. Specialty services such as disaster restoration, HVAC, security and air duct cleaning should grow at a faster rate than janitorial services.

Building service contractors diversifying into non-commercial markets such as education and healthcare will also fare better. Office construction is down 23 percent from 2008 levels. Vacancy rates, at 16.5 percent nationally, are at five-year highs, according to the study.

The report also estimates that the 77 billion square feet of U.S. commercial floor space was cleaned at an average of $1.33 per square foot.

BSCAI Elects 2010 Board of Directors

Building Service Contractors Association International (BSCAI) recently elected new members for the 2010 term of office. J. Michael Horgan, president Hurley Corporation, Stoneham, Mass., was elected president. Horgan previously served as BSCAI's vice president and treasurer.

Also elected were Sally Schopmeyer, president of Maintenance Inc., Dallas, as president-elect; Terry Woodley, vice president and COO of Woodley Building Maintenance, Kansas City, Mo., as vice president; and Kevin S. Rohan, president of Cavalier Services, Fairfax, Va., as treasurer. Stanley Doobin, president of Harvard Maintenance, New York, will serve as past president.

Newly elected members to serve on BSCAI's 2010 Board of Directors include: Janelle Bruland of Management Services Northwest, Inc.; Curtis McLemore of McLemore Building Maintenance; Scott A. Stevenson of KleenMark, and Michael B. Young of Red River Sanitors Inc.

The following individuals will continue to serve on the board in 2010: Taylor Bruce of IH Services; Michael Diamond of Premier Maintenance Inc.; Lance Ford of Palm Facility Service LLC; Paul Greenland of Aetna Building Maintenance; Paul LaBossiere of PML Maintenance Ltd.; Arthur Stecklow of Gali Service Industries; Kirk VanderVlucht of Holland Inc.; and Yasser Youssef of The Budd Group.


Zep Inc., Atlanta, acquired Atlanta-based Amrep Inc. As a result of this transaction, Zep Inc.'s product and brand portfolio will now include Amrep proprietary brands. Amrep will maintain its commercial organizations, brands and headquarters in Marietta, Ga.

Amano USA Holdings, Inc., Roseland, N.J., appointed Thomas M. Benton as president of Amano Pioneer Eclipse Corp., Sparta, N.C. Benton has held general management and other executive roles at Clarke, Alto and Nilfisk-Advance.

Adrian "Skip" Marsden, founder of St. Paul-based Marsden Holding passed away in November 2009. Marsden was a founding member of the Building Services Contractors Association International (BSCAI) and former association president and board member.

Addison, Texas-based Jani-King International has been ranked the No. 8 Franchise Company among all franchisors by Entrepreneur magazine. For the 23rd year, Jani-King was also rated the No. 1 Commercial Cleaning Franchise Company by the magazine.

CleanPower, LLC, Milwaukee became the first building service contractor in Wisconsin to be certified with honors for ISSA's Cleaning Industry Management Standard Ð Green Building (CIMS-GB).

St. Louis-based Stratus Building Solutions, has been named the No. 1 New Franchise, the No. 3 Fastest-Growing Franchise and the No. 13 Overall Franchise in Entrepreneur magazine's 2010 Franchise 500 ranking.

CORRECTIONS: In the article, "Clean Hands Without Soap and Water" from the August 2009 issue, Total Building Maintenance was incorrectly referred to as Total Maintenance Solutions.

The Green Logic Eliminator by Core Products Co. featured in the Nov./Dec. 2009 Product Showcase is no longer available from the manufacturer.