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Maine pursues State Plan option

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Washington – Maine could become the 28th U.S. state or territory to operate its own occupational safety and health plan.

In the May 20 Federal Register, OSHA published a proposed rule acknowledging the submission of Maine’s program, which would cover 81,000 public workers in the state. Private- and federal-sector workers in Maine would remain under federal OSHA jurisdiction.

Under the Occupational Safety and Health Act, states and territories are granted the option to operate their own OSHA program, provided the program is as effective as federal OSHA.

“The Maine Department of Labor is to be commended for taking this step forward to provide protection for these workers,” OSHA administrator David Michaels said in a press release. “This should serve as a model for other states that are interested in maintaining the safety and health of their public workforces.”

Comments on the proposal or requests for a hearing on the issue are due June 19.