GEH1401:            Help! Everyone Wants My Data:  A Look at Streamlining Data Collection for Environmental Health Programs

Speakers:            Elise Rothschild, REHS/RS; Darryl Booth

 

Do you feel overwhelmed by the sheer amount of data collection that must be done for your programs to fulfill state or federal reporting mandates?

Attend this session to see how Sacramento County's Environmental Management Department (EMD) streamlined their data collection mandates for the Cross Connect and Hazardous Materials Chemical Inventory Reporting (EPCRA) programs.  When faced with processing test reports from over 14,5000 cross connect devices and  a recent law mandating  that Hazardous Materials Chemical Inventory reporting (EPCRA) be reported electronically,  EMD not only managed to overcome these  overwhelming obstacles but  saved in staff  time and cut costs.

 

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The Sacramento County Environmental Management Department (EMD) is responsible for administering the Cross Connect Program and Hazardous Materials Business Plan Program (EPCRA) for business within Sacramento County.  When faced with mandated state data reporting requirements, EMD implemented a web portal to streamline and eliminate paper driven processes, report mandated environmental health data electronically to state agencies and also save money by cutting staff costs in these Environmental Health Programs.

Background:

The Cross Connect Program is California State mandated program in which water purveyors must test Cross Connection devices to ensure that the public water supply is kept safe from potential cross contamination of back flow events with non- potable water sources.   Sacramento County EMD is in contract with the water purveyors within Sacramento County to enforce the testing of Cross Connect devices.  There are over 14,500 cross connect devices located in Sacramento County alone.

The web portal allowed EMD to streamline their data processes by:

·         Allowing Certified Testers to input their test results directly into EMD’s database eliminating the need for staff to manually input test reports. Errors are minimized using this method.

·         Testers can now pay fees on line via web portal.

·         Streamlined process of notifying owners of annual testing for over 14, 5000 Cross Connect devices.

The Emergency Community Right To Know Act (EPCRA) is a Federal and State mandated program in which businesses storing threshold quantities of hazardous materials must report their chemical inventory.  In California, they must send a copy of their plan to the Certified Unified Program Agency (CUPA). Recently Assembly Bill 2286 was passed mandating that all business in the state of California must submit their hazardous materials business plan electronically starting January 1, 2013.

EMD regulates approximately 4,000 businesses in the EPCRA/Hazardous Materials Business Plan Program.  The web portal allows EMD to streamline the data collection by:

·         Allowing businesses to input their chemical inventory directly into EMD’s database eliminating the need for staff to handle paper and manually.

·         Businesses can pay for fees through the portal

·         Allow staff to review the chemical inventory directly via the portal.