EPA “Reconsiders” Whether to Protect Communities Surrounding Chemical Plants

But as the ….government has promoted the [chemical] sector’s rapid growth, it has struggled with its impact on the environment. The chemical industry has quashed calls to strengthen oversight and force companies to publicly disclose what substances they produce. Local environmental bureaus are often politically feeble and understaffed. — New York Times, June 13, 2017…

OSHA Enforcement Update: Press Release Forecast – Still Slim to None.

Since late April, OSHA has issued only three additional enforcement press releases (listed below, Gulf Cable, the Saipan casino case, and Republic Steel). Whereas the Obama administration issued press releases for any case greater than $40,000 (as well as “novel” cases like workplace violence and heat stroke), there seems to be no rhyme or reason…

Why Workers Wait So Long For OSHA Standards (And How Trump Is Making It Worse)

Attached here is an article I wrote for Law 360 about OSHA’s painfully slow process for issuing standards that protect workers, and how the Trump administration is trying to make it even slower. OSHA’s law, court decisions and OMB Executive Orders have already slowed the process to a crawl, but Trump’s Executive Order requiring one…

Industry calls EPA Proposal to Ban Bathtub Stripper a “Blatant and raw power grab”

Seventeen workers dying between 2000 and 2015 isn’t enough to convince the methylene chloride industry that more is needed than just labels on a can to prevent the needless deaths of worker stripping bathtubs. The Environmental Protection Agency’s proposed ban of methylene chloride as a paint stripper is a “blatant and raw power grab” of authority…

FLASH: Trump to visit Department of Labor

Just got word that President Trump (yes, that President Trump) will be visiting the Department of Labor Next Wednesday, where he “will announce policy initiatives that this Administration will pursue to narrow the skills gap and to ensure that all Americans have good, safe jobs.” Secretary of Labor Acosta sent a memo to Department staff stating that:…

Secretary Acosta Testifies Before House Approps Committee Tomorrow

Secretary of Labor Acosta testifies tomorrow (Wednesday) at 10:00 AM about the President’s FY 2018 DOL budget proposal. I won’t be able to see it (poor planning), but maybe you can watch and let me know what happens. It should be interesting. The House, unlike the Senate, has not yet gotten a chance to question Acosta.…