In October, OSHA published its regulatory agenda, listing all regulatory actions under consideration. Consistent with the current administration’s stated focus on regulatory reform, OSHA calls many of the rulemaking actions “deregulatory” and says that many are either completed or have moved into the final rule stages.

Somewhat contrary to its stated deregulatory goals, the agenda reflects a long list of issues in OSHA’s sights. It is notable that OSHA’s lack of a confirmed assistant secretary to lead it has not prevented the agency from moving forward with such a robust agenda.

The Executive Summary of the 2018 Regulatory Plan highlighted three OSHA actions that the agency says are deregulatory in nature:

  1. Occupational Exposure to Beryllium in the Shipyard and Construction Sectors,
  2. Final rule to Improve Workplace Injuries and Illness, and
  3. The Standards Improvement Project, SIP IV, intended to reduce or revise duplicative, unnecessary, and inconsistent safety and health standards.

OSHA’s fall 2018 regulatory agenda contains 21 regulatory actions, an increase of one more regulation than was listed in the Spring 2018 Unified Agenda. Of the twenty-one actions, nine are in the pre-rule stage, five are in the proposed rule stage, and seven are in the final rule stage.

Completed Actions

  • Occupational Exposure to Beryllium, General Industry. OSHA issued its direct final rule (DFR) effective July 6, 2018 in accordance with a settlement reached between OSHA and certain industry stakeholders. OSHA says that this DFR constitutes a deregulatory action and estimates a net annual cost savings of $.36 million per year. The DFR affirms the adoption of the new lower comprehensive general industry standard of an  8-hour time weighted average (TWA) PEL of 0.2 ug/m3 and includes amendments to the definitions of beryllium work areas, emergency, dermal contact, and beryllium contamination. The purpose of the DFR is to clarify the standard’s application to processes, operations, or areas involving materials containing trace amounts of beryllium, defined as less than .1% beryllium per weight.OSHA also issued a DFR to extend select compliance dates for occupational exposure to beryllium in general industry for certain ancillary provisions. The extension from March 12, 2018 to December 12, 2018 applies only to ancillary provisions relating to methods of compliance, beryllium work areas, regulated areas, personal protective clothing and equipment, hygiene areas and practice, housekeeping, communication of hazards, and record keeping.
  • Cranes and Derricks in Construction. OSHA’s extension of the crane and derrick operator certification deadline ends on November 10, 2018. The extension was originally published in the Federal Register as a final rule on November 9, 2017.

Other OSHA Regulations in Final Rule Stage

Regulations in Proposed Rule Stage

Regulations in the Pre-Rule Stage

Regulations Listed as Long-Term Actions

OSHA increased the number of regulations relegated to Long-Term Action status from 2 to 4. Those regulations placed on the Long-Term Action list for OSHA are: