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WASHINGTON ALERT


Stephanie Salmon, AFS Washington Office; Jeff Hannapel & Christian Richter, The Policy Group, Washington, D.C.


White House Issues New Greenhouse Gas Guidance for Federal Agencies


THE GUIDANCE MAKES CLEAR FOR THE FIRST TIME THAT ALL OR NEARLY ALL NEPA ANALYSIS WILL NOW INCLUDE A QUANTITATIVE ASSESSMENT OF DIRECT AND INDIRECT GREENHOUSE GAS EMISSIONS ASSOCIATED WITH THE PROPOSED ACTION.


In August, the White House


Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) released its final guidance on incorporating greenhouse gas emis- sions and climate change into agency actions where the National Environ- mental Policy Act (NEPA) currently applies. NEPA requires an assessment of the impact on the environment of a proposed federal action including rulemakings, permitting, program- matic decisions, and a wide variety of projects, including some construction projects.


Te guidance makes clear for the first time that all or nearly all NEPA analysis now will include a quantita- tive assessment of direct and indirect greenhouse gas emissions associated with the proposed action. Te guidance also directs agencies to analyze future climate implications of their projects, in-


ON THE HILL


IRS Proposal Could Increase Tax Liability for Transfer of Family Interest in Businesses


The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) released its proposed regulations on es- tate, gift and generation-skipping transfer taxes and restrictions Treasury in August that may have a significant impact on family businesses’ succession plans and make it harder for family owned busi- nesses to transition to the next genera- tion. These changes proposed to section 2704(b) would remove legitimate valuation discounts for estate, gift, and generation skipping taxes which businesses have used for the past two decades in order to prevent the IRS from overvaluing their businesses at death.


These regulations are still in draft form; however, if implemented as cur- rently proposed, these regulations could have a significant impact on the ultimate determination of the fair market value of


16 | MODERN CASTING September 2016


an intra-family ownership interest relied upon for estate and gift tax purposes. A public hearing on these proposed regulations has been scheduled for December 1, 2016, beginning at 10 a.m. in the Auditorium, Internal Revenue Build- ing, 1111 Constitution Ave., NW, Wash- ington, D.C. 20224.


OSHA Interprets Doctor Recommendations as Treatment


In a recent Interpretation Letter, the Occupational Safety and Health Admin- istration (OSHA) responded to a question about medical treatment beyond first aid for recordkeeping purposes. The incident involved an employee who experienced wrist pain after working at a computer. Before being seen at the occupational health clinic, the employee bought and used a rigid wrist brace. The doctor said the brace was not necessary but recommended the employee continue to


wear it if it was relieving the pain. In response to the employer ques- tion, OSHA stated that a provision of the recordkeeping rule provides that the use of orthopedic devices designed to immobilize parts of the body, such as wrist braces with rigid stays, are considered medical treatment be- yond first aid. Although self-treatment or self-medication by an employee generally does not constitute medical treatment, the recordkeeping criteria are met if a treatment is “directed or recommended by the employer or a health care professional.” In this situa- tion, OSHA determined that the doctor’s recommendation constituted a treat- ment recommendation by a health care professional and, therefore, the injury was a recordable injury.


For additional information, contact Stepha- nie Salmon, AFS Washington Off ice,


202/842-4864, ssalmon@afsinc.org.


cluding the long-term adaptability and/ or resilience of the project. Te types of climate effects agencies could consider include: heat waves, severe wildfires, heavy downpours and flooding, increased


drought, greater sea-level rise, intense storms, harm to water and air quality. While the guidance is not binding,


it will influence how NEPA analysis is conducted moving forward.


The White House Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) released its final guidance on incorporating greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) and climate change into agency actions.


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