In the mid-1980s, newly enacted state and federal legislation required that schools be inspected for asbestos and that plans for its management be developed. The Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) staff reviews asbestos management plans for elementary and secondary school facilities and inspects abatement projects to ensure compliance with state and federal laws. More recently enacted legislation regulates persons who perform asbestos-related activities in commercial and public buildings and requires that such activities be carried out safely. People who manage or abate asbestos in elementary and secondary schools must be trained and licensed.
The IDPH has established separate licensing criteria for various asbestos management disciplines. All licenses expire on May 15 each year, except Workers, which expire on February 1 each year.
Asbestos Workers & Contractors
- Workers who manage or abate asbestos in schools, commercial, or public buildings must be trained and licensed.
- Contractors are responsible for conducting asbestos abatement projects. All contractors who conduct asbestos abatement projects must have insurance and are required to be licensed.
- Supervisors are the Contractor's designees on asbestos abatement projects and are responsible for ensuring that work is conducted in accordance with state and federal regulations.
- Project Managers are the building owner's or school district's representative on school projects and are responsible for ensuring that the workers and supervisors are complying with the contract specification and state and federal regulations. Projects Managers are not required to oversee asbestos abatement projects in commercial and public buildings, but if a building owner chooses to have an individual oversee the project, then the Department requires that the person be licensed.
- Air Sampling Professionals are responsible for taking air samples to determine the airborne concentration of asbestos inside and outside the work area. The Air Sampling Professional conducts aggressive clearance air monitoring at the end of asbestos abatement projects to ensure that the concentration of asbestos in the air is acceptable for reoccupation of the area.
- Project Designers are required to develop project designs for school buildings. The project designers are required to draw up specifications and contracts that contractors must follow to complete an asbestos abatement project that meets state and federal regulations. If a project design is developed for asbestos abatement in commercial and public buildings, then it must be completed by a licensed Project Designer.
- Inspectors are required to identify asbestos-containing materials by sampling suspected asbestos-containing materials discovered during an inspection.
- Management Planners are required to develop management plans based upon information from an Inspector. Each school in Illinois must develop and maintain an asbestos management plan describing the management of the school's asbestos-containing building materials. Commercial and public buildings in Illinois are not required to develop management plans.