Magazine article Occupational Hazards

Foulke: OSHA Transparent in Rulemaking Process

Magazine article Occupational Hazards

Foulke: OSHA Transparent in Rulemaking Process

Article excerpt

OSHA administrator Edwin Foulke Jr. at a June 14 hearing assured members of the House Workforce Protections Subcommittee the agency's rulemaking process is transparent and does not enforce threshold limit values (TLVs) set by the American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists (ACGIH).

The allegedly closed nature of the process in which the TLVs are set, in addition to OSHA's hazard communication rule's alleged practice of incorporating the TLVs without transparency, has driven committee chairman Rep. Charlie Norwood, R-Ga., to introduce legislation he claims re-establishes a transparent rulemaking process.

"I share your views on the importance of transparency process," Foulke told Norwood at the hearing. "I strongly believe that the notice and comment rulemaking process OSHA utilizes is a model of openness that includes full public participation."

In a subcommittee hearing last April, Norwood took issue with the Department of Labor's dependence on non-consensus standards set by non-government organizations, specifically ACGIH, which has been accused of acting in secrecy when setting TLVs on exposure limits. During the June 14 hearing, Norwood reiterated his low tolerance for the practice, declaring war on the Labor Department's alleged reliance on nonconsensus standards. …

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