GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF NORTH CAROLINA
HOUSE BILL 845
Short Title: NC Healthy Schools.
Representatives Harrison, Bradford, McGrady, and Horn (Primary Sponsors).
For a complete list of sponsors, refer to the North Carolina General Assembly web site.
Rules, Calendar, and Operations of the House
April 13, 2017
A BILL TO BE ENTITLED
AN ACT to enact the north carolina healthy schools act of 2017.
The General Assembly of North Carolina enacts:
SECTION 1. This act may be cited as the "North Carolina Healthy Schools Act of 2017."
SECTION 2. Chapter 115C of the General Statutes is amended by adding a new Article to read:
"§ 115C‑270.1. Legislative findings.
The General Assembly finds the following:
(1) Children are vulnerable to and may be severely affected by exposure to chemicals, hazardous waste, and other environmental hazards.
(2) The United States Environmental Protection Agency estimates that human exposure to indoor air pollutants can be two to five times and up to 100 times higher than outdoor exposure levels.
(3) Children, teachers, janitors, and other staff members spend a significant amount of time inside school buildings and are continuously exposed to chemicals from cleaners, waxes, deodorizers, and other maintenance products.
"§ 115C‑270.2. Use of green cleaning supplies.
(a) When it is economically feasible, all elementary and secondary public schools, including charter schools established pursuant to G.S. 115C‑218.5, and all elementary and secondary nonpublic schools with 50 or more students shall establish a green cleaning policy and exclusively purchase and use environmentally sensitive cleaning products pursuant to the guidelines and specifications established under G.S. 115C‑270.3.
(b) If adopting a green cleaning policy under this section is not economically feasible, a public school shall provide, until such time that it is economically feasible, annual written notification to the Department of Public Instruction on a form provided by the Department that the development and implementation of a green cleaning policy is not economically feasible.
(c) For purposes of this section, adopting a green cleaning policy is not economically feasible if adopting the policy would result in an increase in the cleaning costs of the school.
"§ 115C‑270.3. Green cleaning supply guidelines and specifications.
The Department of Health and Human Services, the Department of Public Instruction, the State Board of Education, and a panel of interested stakeholders, including cleaning product industry representatives, nongovernmental organizations, and others, shall establish and amend on an annual basis guidelines and specifications for healthy and environmentally sensitive cleaning and maintenance products for use in school facilities. The Department of Public Instruction shall provide multiple avenues by which cleaning products may be determined to be environmentally sensitive under the guidelines. Guidelines and specifications may include implementation practices, including inspection. The completed guidelines and specifications must be posted on the Department of Public Instruction's Internet Web site.
"§ 115C‑270.4. Dissemination to schools.
(a) Upon the completion of the guidelines and specifications under G.S. 115C‑270.3, the Department of Public Instruction shall provide each local board of education, charter school, and, through the Department of Administration, Division of Nonpublic Education, each elementary or secondary nonpublic school with 50 or more students in this State with the guidelines and specifications. Each local board of education shall immediately disseminate the guidelines and specifications to every public school in its jurisdiction. Local boards of education, the Department of Public Instruction, and the Division of Nonpublic Education shall provide ongoing assistance to schools to carry out the requirements of this Article.
(b) In the event that the guidelines and specifications under G.S. 115C‑270.3 are updated by the Department of Public Instruction, the Department shall provide the updates to the Division of Nonpublic Education, each local board of education, and each charter school for immediate dissemination. Additionally, the Department of Public Instruction shall post all updated materials on its Internet Web site.
"§ 115C‑270.5. Rules.
The State Board of Education shall adopt rules as necessary to implement this Article."
SECTION 3. G.S. 115C‑218.75 is amended by adding a new subsection to read:
"(a1) Healthy and Environmentally Sensitive Cleaning and Maintenance Products. – A charter school shall be subject to the requirements of Article 17A of this Chapter."
SECTION 4. Part 4 of Article 39 of Chapter 115C of the General Statutes is amended by adding a new section to read:
"§ 115C‑566.5. Healthy and environmentally sensitive cleaning and maintenance products.
When it is economically feasible, a nonpublic school with 50 or more students is encouraged to adopt a green cleaning policy consistent with Article 17A of this Chapter. The Department of Administration, Division of Nonpublic Education, shall disseminate the guidelines and specifications for healthy and environmentally sensitive cleaning and maintenance products for use in school facilities in accordance with G.S. 115C‑270.4."
SECTION 5. Notwithstanding Article 17A of Chapter 115C of the General Statutes, as enacted by Section 2 of this act, a school may deplete its existing cleaning and maintenance supply stocks and implement the new requirements under Article 17A of Chapter 115C of the General Statutes, as enacted by Section 2 of this act, in the procurement cycle for the following school year.
SECTION 6. Notwithstanding G.S. 115C‑270.3, as enacted by Section 2 of this act, the Department of Public Instruction shall establish initial guidelines and specifications after a review and evaluation of existing research that shall be completed no later than 180 days after the effective date of this act.
SECTION 7. No State funds shall be appropriated and no State funds are required to implement Article 17A of Chapter 115C of the General Statutes, as enacted by Section 2 of this act.
SECTION 8. This act is effective when it becomes law and applies beginning with the 2017‑2018 school year.