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Federal OSHA Plays Big Brother

December 2010 – Federal OSHA has been aggressively enforcing safety and health compliance in those states in which Federal OSHA enforces the occupational safety and health program. Many States have assumed the responsibility to enforce their own occupational safety and health programs. Federal OSHA has conducted reviews of the State plan OSHA state programs' performance and has issued reports that are not only critical of the State plan programs but have made recommendations that the State plan programs become much more aggressive, meaning more inspections, issuance of higher gravity citations (Repeat, Willful) with enhanced monetary penalties. This article discusses this Federal agenda and is instructive for employers who have operations within these State plan states as to what is likely to occur regarding enforcement.