On November 20, 2015 the fall semiannual regulatory agenda for federal agencies was published. This Regulatory Agenda provides a complete list of all regulatory actions that are under active consideration for promulgation, proposal, or review and covers regulatory actions for over 60 federal departments, agencies, and commissions.

The regulatory agenda for the Department of Labor includes a total of thirty one regulatory entries for OSHA specific actions. Fourteen of these regulatory actions are in the pre-rule stage where the agency is gathering relevant information. Six agency actions are in the proposed rule stage and another eleven of these specific actions are in the final rule stage.

The number of pre-rulemaking initiatives doubled since the spring regulatory agenda including new initiatives for Lockout-Tagout, Powered Industrial Trucks, such as forklifts and a new initiative for Tree Care. For Lockout-Tagout and Powered Industrial Trucks updates OSHA will issue Requests for Information in the fall of 2016.

OSHA anticipates holding a stakeholder meeting in June 2016 for potential rulemaking in the tree care industry. The regulatory agenda states, “There is no OSHA standard for tree care operations; the agency currently applies a patchwork of standards to address the serious hazards in this industry. The tree care industry previously petitioned the agency for rulemaking and OSHA issued an ANPRM (September, 2008); but the issues was later removed from the Regulatory Agenda due to insufficient resources.   Tree care continues to be a high-hazard industry. Stakeholder meetings will allow the agency to update the record and proceed to a future rulemaking.”

It also appears that OSHA plans to bring in the new year with several final rules early in 2016, including Silica in February, Improve Tracking of Workplace Injuries and Illnesses in March and Walking Working Surfaces in April.

Regulatory actions under consideration by OSHA include:

 RULE

 ANTICIPATED AGENCY ACTION

 Walking Working Surfaces – General Industry (Subparts D and I)  Final Rule in April 2016

 

 Improve Tracking of Workplace Injuries and Illnesses  Final Rule in March 2016

 

Occupational Exposure to Crystalline Silica Final Rule February 2016
 Occupational Exposure to Combustible Dust  Initiate SBREFA August 2016
 Crane Operator Qualification in Construction  Notice of Proposed Rulemaking in March 2016
 Clarification of Employer’s Continuing Obligation to Make and Maintain Accurate Records of Each Recordable Injury and Illness  Agency Review of Public Comment until December 2015.
 Process Safety Management and Prevention of Major Chemical Accidents  Complete SBREFA in April 2016
 Tree Care Standard  Stakeholder Meetings June 2016