The National Association of the Remodeling Industry (NARI) is pleased to announce its new lobbyist, Chris Spear, of Nelson Mullins Riley Scarborough LLP, based in Washington, D.C., as of May 2013. Spear is taking the place of NARI’s former lobbyist, Tom Sullivan, as he transitions into his new job as general counsel of the Bipartisan Policy Center in Washington, D.C.
Spear brings a 20-year track record in government relations, working domestically and internationally in the legislative and regulatory arenas. He started his career on Capitol Hill as professional staff in the U.S. Senate, responsible for the Subcommittee on Employment and Workplace Safety, a role that included jurisdiction issues such as workplace education, training, safety, wages, hour laws and flexibility.
Spear put his experience from the subcommittee to good use, moving to the Department of Labor, as Assistant Secretary of Labor for Policy.
“I oversaw regulatory agencies such as the Wage & Hour Division of OSHA, learning the [process of] how rules promulgate under these agencies—insight beneficial to conveying NARI’s messages to these agencies,” Spear says.
Most recently, Spear spent time working as Vice President of Emerging Markets for Honeywell Process Solutions based in the U.K.
“If there was one mandate we should have, it would require everyone [legislators] to spend time in the private sector and learn what it takes to manage a business and make your numbers each month,” Spear says.
Spears’ broad-based professional experience will be an asset to the broad nature of NARI’s key legislative issues.
Spear will be starting his tenure with NARI working on legislative actions to add the opt-out provision back into the EPA’s Lead Renovation, Repair and Painting Rule.
“When regulatory agencies move in a concerning direction—as the EPA has—it creates uncertainty among the affected populations,” he says. “This uncertainty is not good for those being regulated, and NARI members need clarity in order to follow the rule as intended.” He hopes reinstating the opt-out will give the industry clarity needed for widespread compliance.