Community College of Rhode Island

Environmental/Safety Committee Meeting Minutes

May 16, 2001

TO: Bill Mercer, Manny Terezakis, Richard Robinson, James Ellis, 
George Sousa, Dennis Melander, Edna O'Neill Mattson, Kathy Twining
Barbara Legg, Robert Antonson, Donna Scattone, Joanne Jacobs


Meeting called to order at 10:15 a.m. on Wednesday, May 16, 2001 at the Flanagan Campus


Attendees:  Stephen Marginson, Manny Terezakis (FC), Edna O'Neill Mattson (KC), Richard Robinson (FC), James Ellis (KC), George Sousa (FC), Bill Mercer (KC), Donna Scattone (KC), Robert Antonson (FC), Joanne Jacobs (FC), Barbara Legg (KC), Kathy Twining (KC), Cathy Tessier (FC)


1.      Report given by Dean Marginson:

A.     Reported Health Issues at the Knight Campus: Several health related issues were reported to Donna Scattone and submitted to the Committee.  The reports of nose bleeds and headaches have been addressed and it was determined that the cause is dryness in the air.  Modifications to the HVAC system to increase humidity are being looked into and should rectify the problem.

B.     Cleanliness issues in KC maintenance area: Was reported that the men's restroom needed to be cleaned more frequently.  Also, the issue of the garbage room door being left open which causes an odor problem on the ground floor.  Bill Mercer will follow up.

C.     Vehicle Restraints/Gas Canisters:  The lack of working seat belts in vehicles and the procedure for transporting gas canisters throughout the building was discussed.  Both items are being looked into.  It is believed that they have been taken care of.

D.     Air Quality Issues:  Any person(s) having severe reactions to construction related air problems can be moved to another area of the building that is less affected.

E.    Construction Update:   The West End of the building is scheduled to open in September, 2001.  Some faculty will also be moving by September.  The North side will be 100% complete by December, 2001.  Roof leaks in the 3rd floor faculty office area were a result of the roof being old and also had suffered damage caused by the construction.  Tears in the roof affected leaks on the 3rd floor.  Have hired a contractor to patch holes and repair tears at a cost of approximately $15,000.  There is still the issue of residual moisture that will need to dry up before the problem is completely taken care of.  The area is scheduled to be repainted to clean up any water stains.  

2.      Departmental Reports:

Manny gave an update on Chemical/Environmental Safety Issues:

-      Asbestos in the Fieldhouse - There was a report of possible asbestos in the fieldhouse, the area was tested and no asbestos was found.

-          Radon Testing - Testing is on schedule, every 3 years.     

-          Testing for Lead in the Daycare - complete and no problems found.

-          Recycle of bottles & cans at KC - students at KC began recycling project.  Suggestions regarding recycling and also the enforcing of the "NO FOOD OR BEVERAGE IN CLASSROOMS POLICY" was to post signs on the 6th floor stating NO FOOD OR BEVERAGE BEYOND THIS POINT and to place recycling and trash containers at the top of the stairs  for everyone to discard their items prior to going to class.

-          Use of Styrofoam cups was discussed  - it was noted that styrofoam was being used by the cafeteria once again.  Dean Marginson indicated that the items being used do not contain any Chloroflorocarbons; therefore, it is safe for the environment.

-          The College has an oil spill counter measure and prevention plan in place.  Have replaced all underground oil storage tanks and will need to replace the above-ground tanks as well (required by DEM and the EPA).

-          PCB Testing - Retrieved samples and tested cleaned.

-          Tested Enrollment Services Area - Reports of individuals experiencing constant headaches.  The area was tested for carbon monoxide and showed nothing.  It was mentioned that poor lighting could be the reason.


Latex Policy:

-          Physical contact or airborne exposure to latex can cause serious health problems.
-          Asking all departments to reduce or eliminate latex in their areas. 
-          Chartwells has a NO LATEX policy.
-          Joanne Jacobs spoke with Ray Deangelis about ordering latex free gloves for Central Stores.  Must provide him with a list of different types of gloves and their usage so he can order them and they can be stocked in Central Stores.

Joanne Jacobs reported an odor in the faculty office area they caused a serious reaction.  Experienced burning eyes and throat.  It was determined that an odor of Phenol (a preservative used on the cats in the biology lab) was causing the problem.  The cats were exposed all day due to the final exam, lab practical which resulted in a more concentrated odor in a small area for a prolonged period of time.  Perhaps look into a way to keep the cats wrapped to prevent that from happening.  Lab ventilation should also be checked.

A question about MLT lab storage near the Security Office.  Items (no hazardous waste) are stored for approximately 2 - 3 weeks prior to proper disposal.

Fume hoods to double movement of air in Biology & Chemistry Labs will be installed.

Kathy Twining discussed the lighting in the new area.  Dean Marginson indicated that lighting enhancements are being discussed and that desk lamps will be available wherever necessary.

Edna Mattson discussed reports of nose bleeds on 2nd floor.  As previously mentioned enhancements to the HVAC to increase humidity and mechanical improvements are being looked into.
The situation of dust in the Computer Lab was construction related and has been corrected.


Jim Ellis, Chief Security & Safety reported:

-          Department is trained to use AED's
-          Changed to all non-latex gloves
-          TTY phones to be implemented for the hearing impaired
-          Attended sexual assault task force meeting
-          Non-violence training for police officers
-          3-D Driving School to train police officers.  Will be running additional schools
-          Discussed bullet-proof vests for police officers.

Arming of Campus Police was discussed and was indicated that the Community College will not be arming their officers.  URI officers will be armed as they are being considered separately.

3.      Campus Construction Updates:

-  Providence Campus is behind schedule approximately 10 - 12  months.   Will go out to bid this summer with construction scheduled to begin in the Fall.

-   Knight Campus Project is on target.

 -    Newport is moving along quickly.  Will be a 65,000 sq. ft. facility which is slightly smaller than the Providence Campus.  The facility will have a daycare center on site.

-   PROJECT # 1:  We have requested to include a bond issue on the 2002 ballot to expand the Flanagan Campus.  As a result of the Master Plan that was completed a few months ago, it was determined that we were in serious need of classroom space and faculty office space.

-   PROJECT #2: Renewal of Knight Campus megastructure will spruce up the area to match new addition.  Items to include:  lighting enhancements, painting, and floor replacements.  Lounge areas for students and staff will be added.



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