Highlights from the NASCSP Annual Training Conference, 2014

The National Association for State Community Services Programs (NASCSP) met in Raleigh, North Carolina, for its annual training conference. Here are some personal highlights:

  • Raleigh, North Carolina, is a beautiful town but hard to take in from the 6th floor of my hotel room. All I saw were trees and a clump of tall buildings downtown. That’s why the city is called “City of Oaks”.
  • At one session, folks from the AFL-CIO who were meeting next door behind a thin partition were singing the National Anthem out loud—very loud. So we stood up and joined them.
  • Dr. Gene Nichol, who teaches in the University of North Carolina Law School and was an excellent keynote speaker, reminded us that in a nation where “the 400 richest control more wealth than the 150,000 at the bottom of the income scale,” we have to ask, “Do environmentalists abandon the poor?” He was preaching to the choir—although most would not think of themselves primarily as environmentalists—who would answer “No”.
  • Listening to Bob Adams (see photo at left), DOE WAP Supervisor, in a lively back and forth with WAP directors and practitioners about things like the Quality Work and Quality Management Plans, I realized that this is how government works—not in a top down fashion, but in a room of equals, where government officials and practitioners work out the details of what’s best for everyone.
  • We need to do a lot more research into the health effects of radon. Are the ill effects overblown? Is the situation dire? We just don’t know. The funds for research through ARRA are no more. Will states have to take up the challenge?
  • States are allowed to devote up to 25% of their Low Income Heating Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) funds to Weatherization.
  • The WAP Evaluation and ARRA period evaluation are… on… the… way, if not in-the-mail. Think “within six months for WAP evaluation and “February” for ARRA evaluation.
  • About 60% of WAP pros are passing the written exam for Quality Control Inspector (QCI), and 85% are passing the field test.
  • There is relief for ASHRAE 62.2 headaches. See the latest Standard Work Specification (SWS) (https://sws.nrel.gov/sites/default/files/sws_singlefamily_0.pdf) on ventilation, p. 118.
  • Some web sites to check out: Green Durham (www.greendurham.net); Insightfully Complied Utility Data (www.resispeak.com).
  • Twitter tags for Communicating Wx: #WxDayOct30 and #NASCSP14.

Next years Training Conference will take place in Sacramento, California, September 15–18.

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