Clearing Away Asbestos-Not As Easy As You Think!

When Kenneth Tyson left his job as Property Specialist at the Cuyahoga Land
Bank, he wasn’t leaving demolition work—in fact, he’s now working with demolitions more than ever.
This past fall the Cuyahoga Land Bank founded CLB Services, an environmental services company. Kenneth Tyson became Co-Founder and Executive Director of CLB Services. And for both Tyson and the Cuyahoga Land Bank, this new enterprise is a win-win situation.Land Bank Staff
“I’m an entrepreneur at heart,” he says.  Tyson was a business entrepreneur before coming to work at the Cuyahoga Land Bank.  The decision to start a new company was twofold – one part cost savings, one part problem solving.
Prior to creating CLB Services, the Cuyahoga Land Bank contracted with a dozen or so environmental services companies for asbestos survey work.  “They all did business a little differently, each having a different reporting format and varying turnaround times for completing surveys,” says Gus Frangos, President and General Counsel. “It raised the question: what if we (Cuyahoga Land Bank) worked with less companies? It would boost production and efficiency, and reduce costs for the Cuyahoga Land Bank. And that thought process led to conversations about creating CLB Services.” According to Frangos, the brain-child of CLB Services, this was a way to professionally do survey work and permit a residual profit from these services to flow back to the Cuyahoga Land Bank mission.
But starting a new company doesn’t happen overnight. Tyson had to undergo several weeks of field training, 40 hours of in-class training, and then pass an exam to obtain state certification, before he could complete his first asbestos survey.  Mr. Tyson first hired another former Cuyahoga Land Bank staff member, Matt Bobel, an asbestos analyst, who “spendLand Bank Staffs the majority of his time in the field,” Tyson says.
“Matt surveys each property by identifying all homogenous materials at the site.  He then collects samples of each material based on its condition and quantity.  Once all samples have been collected, they are sent to a lab for analysis.” says Tyson.
If the lab finds more than a one percent asbestos, he adds, “asbestos containing material must be removed prior to demolition.”
Later this year, CLB will begin offering asbestos removal services, streamlining the demolition process further.
The Cuyahoga Land Bank is CLB’s biggest client, and Tyson sees only room for growth. The City of Cleveland is also a CLB Services client. “The Cuyahoga Land Bank will partner with municipalities all over Cuyahoga County,” he says. “CLB Services would like to provide abatement services to all Cuyahoga Land Bank partner communities—and we know that cities in neighboring counties have similar challenges.”
“For now, our focus is on completing surveys and getting them to the City of Cleveland and the Cuyahoga Land Bank in a timely manner. That’s why this is a good marriage,” says Tyson.
If your organization or community is in need of asbestos surveys, please reach out to Kenneth Tyson, Executive Director, at 216-307-6001 or for more details.

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