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Quality Industrial Coatings Receives 2024 Small Business Environmental Stewardship Award

Quality Industrial Coatings, a leading provider of automotive, truck, and RV painting and body repair services, has been honored with the 2024 Small Business Environmental Stewardship Award by the National Small Business Environmental Assistance Programs (SBEAPs). This prestigious recognition celebrates the company’s unwavering commitment to environmental excellence and sustainable business practices.

Founded in 1989 by President and Owner Steve Kaminstein, Quality Industrial Coatings has consistently demonstrated its dedication to reducing air quality emissions and enhancing the sustainability of its industrial coating division. With a team of 65 full-time employees and multiple shop and garage locations across Dallas, Kingston, Montoursville, Clarks Summit, and Courtdale, Pennsylvania, the company has made significant strides in environmental responsibility.

Environmental Management Assistance Program (EMAP), a specialized service offered by the Widener University Small Business Development Centers (SBDC), played a pivotal role in Quality Industrial Coatings’ journey toward environmental compliance and sustainable practices. EMAP, known for its free and confidential assistance, collaborated closely with the company to evaluate its performance against state-issued air quality permits. This comprehensive assessment included a thorough review of records, historical emission levels, and compliance with volatile organic compound (VOC) coating limits.

As Quality Industrial Coatings expanded its operations and experienced a surge in customer orders, VOC emissions became a critical challenge. The company proactively addressed this issue by implementing strategic changes:

  1. Transitioning to Low VOC Basecoats and Clear Coats: By adopting environmentally friendly coatings, Quality Industrial Coatings significantly reduced VOC emissions.
  2. Zero VOC Reducer: The company’s commitment to sustainability led to the adoption of a reducer with zero VOCs, minimizing environmental impact.
  3. Upgraded Paint Spray Nozzles: Precision spray nozzles were introduced to minimize overspray and coating consumption.
  4. Strategic Part Placement: By reconfiguring part placement, Quality Industrial Coatings further reduced overspray and coating usage.

These concerted efforts resulted in an impressive reduction of approximately 6.5 tons/year of VOC emissions. EMAP Environmental Consultant, Carrie Wintersteen, noted that, “I’ve worked with Steve Kaminstein, the owner, for several years on various projects and I can tell he really cares about his employees and his community. I am glad there is a way for a company like Quality Industrial Coatings to be recognized for reducing their emissions and their commitment to protecting the environment.”

Steve Kaminstein, the owner of Quality Industrial Coatings, stated, “I am grateful to the Pennsylvania Small Business Development Centers for EMAP services. Without the help of this organization and the knowledge of Ms. Wintersteen, the requirements to be compliant with air quality would have been overwhelming.”

The National SBEAP Awards is a premier awards program for recognizing outstanding environmental leadership among small businesses and small business assistance providers. These awards recognize small businesses, SBEAP programs and individuals, trade associations, and other business assistance providers who have made significant contributions to protecting the environment. The awards program is sponsored in partnership with U.S. EPA Asbestos and Small Business Office.

For more information about Quality Industrial Coatings and their commitment to environmental stewardship, visit Quality Industrial Coatings.

Metaltech Success Story: Two for One Permitting Assistance

Tony Zaffuto founded Metaltech in 1989 to make parts for the automotive industry. The small business out of DuBois, PA, takes powdered metal and through the magic of manufacturing, turn it into high quality gears, spacers, structural parts, and more. Recently, Metaltech, Inc. became involved with a start-up battery company for the renewable energy sector, jointly developing several components for prototype testing. To produce the components, Metaltech, Inc. needed to purchase and install a new oven.

Being an experienced small business owner, with a long-standing air permit, Tony knew he needed approval from the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) before purchasing and installing a new oven. Working with his local DEP office, he was provided an explanation of what forms DEP needed to approve for installation of the new oven. Unfortunately, the terminology and abbreviations used within the forms were confusing and Tony knew he needed additional help.

Seeking Air Quality Assistance

Metaltech is a small company with 38 employees and none of them are full-time environmental professionals. The length of the required application was intimidating, and Tony did not want to answer the questions incorrectly. The DEP staff recommended he reach out to the Small Business Development Center’s Environmental Management Assistance Program (EMAP) for free and confidential air quality assistance.

Charles (Chuck) Haney, an EMAP consultant out of the Shippensburg University SBDC, began working with Metaltech was able to phrase the application questions in a way that made sense to someone outside the environmental field. Tony knows his business inside and out and as soon as Tony understood what was being asked, the answers came immediately. In no time the application was submitted and Metaltech received the DEP’s permission to install a new oven.

Air Quality Permit Renewal

Metaltech’s environmental needs didn’t end there. While they were asking for permission to install the new oven, their air permit became due for renewal. Tony and Chuck from EMAP were able to immediately start on the renewal application. Once again, Tony had all the information and was able to provide the information needed with some guidance from EMAP. The renewal was submitted to the DEP and is pending approval.

The information needed to get the DEP’s approval for the new oven and air permit renewal was at Tony’s fingertips. However, he admits that he “would have struggled with the application. There was a half-dozen or so points we would have missed.” A guiding hand from the Chuck and EMAP helped everything go very smoothly.

EMAP participates in Small Business Resource Fair in Darlington Township, PA

On May 17th, a Small Business Resource Fair was held in Darlington Township, Beaver County, Pennsylvania, organized by the Shapiro Administration. The purpose of the event was to provide small businesses, farmers, and residents with information and resources to aid in the community’s recovery from the Norfolk Southern train derailment in East Palestine, Ohio. During the event, Lee Ann Briggs, an EMAP Environmental Consultant, highlighted the free and confidential small business environmental consulting services offered by EMAP. Attendees were also informed about the services provided by the Pennsylvania Small Business Development Centers (SBDCs). Prominent individuals present at the Small Business Resource Fair included Pennsylvania Governor Josh Shapiro, Acting Secretary Richard Negrin from the Pennsylvania DEP, Russell Redding from the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture, Angel Marschik (Deputy District Director) from the SBA Pittsburgh District Office, and Samantha Harmon (Pennsylvania DEP Small Business Ombudsman).  
Pennsylvania Governor Josh Shaprio greets attendees at the Small Business Resource Fair.
Angel Marschik, Deputy District Director at SBA Pittsburgh District Office (left) with Lee Ann Briggs, EMAP Environmental Consultant (right)
Acting Secretary Richard Negrin, Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (left) and Samantha Harmon, Pennsylvania DEP Small Business Ombudsman (right)

GPS Metals Selected for 2023 Small Business Environmental Stewardship Award

GPS Metals, a small wholesale processor and broker of non-ferrous scrap metals from McKeesport, Pennsylvania, received the 2023 Small Business Environmental Stewardship Award.  This award showcases the accomplishments of a small business in the areas of improving environmental performance, pollution prevention, sustainability, and mentoring.

“With EMAP’s help we were able to preserve 7 full-time, good paying jobs with benefits, and continue to contribute to the community by recycling metal products in a responsible manner.”

GPS Metals worked with EMAP to obtain the necessary air quality permits from the Allegheny County Health Department (ACHD), eliminate fugitive emissions from their wire chopping operation, then made modifications to eliminate and prevent stormwater runoff, and improved indoor air quality for their employees.  In addition, GPS Metals reclaims over 2,400 tons of metallic material annually which diverts this waste from going to a landfill.

Keith Schultz of GPS Metals had this to say about the award:

“Lee Ann Briggs from the University of Pittsburgh, SBDC, made an overwhelmingly complicated process reasonably simple to complete with her help.  She helped us navigate the permitting process with the ACHD, and made recommended best practices to be in, and maintain compliance with, DEP and ACHD regulations.  She made multiple site visits to monitor our progress and amend applications as necessary.  Without her help we would have had to expend much more time and effort to understand and navigate the process as we upgraded our dust control systems.  Invaluable asset to the process.  The fact that she nominated us for an award for our shared efforts was just a bonus validation for the steps we took.”

GPS Metals with their 2023 SBEAP Award. Pictured are Tim Nickerson (left), Keith Schultz (middle), and Kyle Schultz (right).

Level 2 Electric Vehicle Charging Rebates Available

Availability of Funding

Under the Driving PA Forward program, for-profit small businesses may be eligible for rebates that install Level 2 electric vehicle charging equipment.  The application period is currently open until funding runs out.

Eligibility

Eligible applicants include businesses that are legally incorporated in or registered to do business in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Eligible locations include publicly accessible non-government owned property and workplace property where the charging stations can serve either employee and/or light duty fleet vehicles.

Program Overview and How to Apply

The following video is offered by Pennsylvania DEP and provides an overview of the Level 2 Electric Vehicle Charging Rebate Program and a walk-through of the electronic application process.  

EPA seeks small business input on proposed TSCA rule

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is looking for small businesses to participate on a panel that will focus on the development of a proposed rule that will focus on potential risks from existing chemicals.  This rule will collect data in the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) risk evaluation and risk management process. To learn more about this opportunity please see this recently published press release by EPA. Small business self-nominations may be submitted through this link and must be received by July 20, 2022.

EMAP Receives 2022 National Small Business Environmental Assistance Program Excellence Award

The National Steering Committee (NSC) of Small Business Environmental Assistance Programs (SBEAPs) & Small Business Ombudsmen (SBO) have selected the Environmental Management Assistance Program (EMAP) of Widener University with the 2022 Small Business Environmental Assistance Program Excellence Award. This award category recognizes exemplary performance of a state SBEAP in the areas of compliance assistance, sustainability, advocacy, and collaboration at the national level. The SBEAP Excellence Award emphasizes program leadership where they have created resources and work products, promoted policy advancements, developed program innovations, and established new partnerships to build a strong network of small business assistance. Since 1997, EMAP has provided free and confidential environmental technical assistance to the small business community in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Headquartered at Widener University in the School of Business Administration on Widener’s main campus located in Chester, Pennsylvania, EMAP services are available throughout the entire network of the Pennsylvania Small Business Development Centers (SBDC) to any Pennsylvania small business seeking assistance with issues of air quality and environmental compliance.   The EMAP team, which includes Lee Ann Briggs, Jeremy Hancher, Charles Haney, and Carrie Wintersteen, was chosen by the SBEAP/SBO for their involvement and leadership with the National Steering Committee, the Technical and Annual Training Subcommittees, and the Environmental Justice Workgroup.  In addition, EMAP was recognized for performing small business analyses on several Pennsylvania air quality rulemakings, for collaborating with the SBDCs and the Pennsylvania DEP Small Business Ombudsman to conduct in-person workshops and virtual webinars on environmental resources, and in partnering with other Pennsylvania stakeholder organizations and trade associations.   Since 2018, EMAP Program Manager Jeremy Hancher has served as an appointee from Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf on the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection’s (DEP) Small Business Compliance Advisory Committee (SBCAC).  This committee provides timely feedback on Pennsylvania air quality regulations and proposed rulemakings, environmental policies and programs, and represents the perspectives and challenges faced by Pennsylvania small businesses.   Dale Kaplan, owner of Kaplan’s Careful Cleaners and long-time Chair of the SBCAC, commented on EMAP services and having received the award by saying, “I have been with the DEP Small Business Compliance Advisory Committee for 26 years and EMAP has stepped up to the plate, the whole team, along with the 16 SBDC universities across the state and have served small businesses in a way that is really phenomenal.  You deserve what you are getting, thank you.”   Several EMAP small business clients have received National SBEAP small business awards of their own including Pennsylvania small businesses Abilene Boot Company in 2022, Dent Design Hardware in 2021, Gate 7 LLC in 2020, and Pik Rite, Inc. in 2017.  During the COVID-19 pandemic, EMAP continued to be a reliable and steady presence to Pennsylvania small businesses needing environmental assistance and support.  EMAP even pivoted during the early stages of COVID to utilize its connections within the Pennsylvania SBDC to provide firsthand knowledge of economic opportunities so that small businesses could access small business grants and low-interest loans related to COVID related shutdown orders.   Always looking to better assist Pennsylvania small businesses in any way they can, the EMAP team recently surveyed their small business clients that received technical assistance in 2021.  One small business noted the following in the survey:
“I’ve worked with EMAP for many years. The services they provide to small businesses are exceptional. I have and will continue to work with and support EMAP and continue to recommend and refer them to others as well.”
 

Abilene Boot selected for the 2022 Small Business Environmental Stewardship Award

The National Steering Committee (NSC) of the Small Business Environmental Assistance Programs (SBEAPs) & Small Business Ombudsmen (SBO) have recognized Abilene Boot Company with the 2022 Small Business Environmental Stewardship Award.

This small boot manufacturer and EMAP client, Abilene Boot Company, based in Somerset, Pennsylvania, received this prestigious award for its accomplishments in the areas of improving environmental performance, pollution prevention, and sustainability.   Abilene Boot was recognized for working with EMAP in evaluating the company’s air quality compliance for its operations.  This includied reviewing their natural minor operating permit, looking at coating and adhesives usage, calculating their air quality emissions, and quantifying VOCs and HAPs for the small manufacturing operation. Read More    

EMAP Wins Targeted Service Award During Annual SBDC Meeting in York

This award was given to recognize service to the entire Pennsylvania SBDC network in a targeted service area. The Pennsylvania SBDC’s Environmental Management Assistance Program (EMAP) was recently awarded the 2015 U.S. EPA Administrator’s Award for Outstanding Accomplishments by a Small Business Trade or State Small Business Environmental Assistance Provider, thus making them the recipient of the Targeted Services Award.

EMAP Wins National EPA Honor for Assistance to Small Businesses

The Pennsylvania Small Business Development Centers (SBDC)’s Environmental Management Assistance Program (EMAP) was awarded the Fiscal Year 2015 U.S. EPA Administrator’s Award for Outstanding Accomplishments by a Small Business Trade or State Small Business Environmental Assistance Provider. The award was presented on May 5, 2016 during the U.S. EPA Administrator’s 26th Annual Small Business Program Awards Ceremony. The event recognized various program activities, individuals, businesses, and state and local entities for their outstanding contributions in Fiscal Year 2015.
Jeremy Hancher is the EMAP Program Manager located at the Widener University SBDC.  He holds over 15 years of experience in environmental compliance, environmental policy, and program management.  He is proud to be the team lead of the award-winning EMAP program which provides free and confidential environmental assistance to the Pennsylvania small business community in fulfillment of the requirements of the Pennsylvania Air Pollution Control Act and Section 507 of the federal Clean Air Act.
In 2015, Jeremy was part of the team effort when EMAP was recognized by US EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy for Outstanding Accomplishments by a State Small Business Environmental Assistance Provider in Providing Technical Environmental Assistance to the Small Business Community. Jeremy holds a Bachelor’s degree from the University of Pittsburgh, a Master’s degree from the University of Pennsylvania, and a certificate from the Wharton School.