I work outdoors five days a week conducting excavations and have been for several years. This has made me a target for stinging insects on occasion. Recently, while working in a fallow corn field I disrupted a large number type of burrowing bees or maybe wasps. They resemble honey bees slightly but were coming from small 1/4" diameter holes in the ground. They seemed reluctant to leave the safety of their burrows but once they did they just flew around close to the ground. They did not seem capable of stinging and to my amazement worked unharmed all day. I hope my intrusion did not do any lasting harm.
Perhaps there are more than one kind of "carpenter bees".The kind we have here are bumblebees and look nothing like honeybees.They make a nuisance of themselves by boring into wood frame structures like my barn.
My barn is well painted and I can tell you ,from experience, that carpenter bees don't pay any attention to paint that's more than six months old.I personally don't consider hundreds of 3/8ths inch holes and their attendant tunnels to be a minor nuisance.Just a wild guess here but you have no personal experience with these bees, do you?I can guarantee you that no farmer,here in the south, consideres them harmless.
If you want to get rid of them, spray starter fluid from an auto parts place (or anything else that has ether in it) into the hole. If you don't have too many, you can also just plug the hole with a cork (sold at craft shops). Both methods are not too friendly to the bees, but they have worked for me.