Crystalline silica rule unwarranted, subcommittee witnesses says
Washington – OSHA’s proposed rule to lower the permissible exposure limit of crystalline silica is unwarranted for some manufacturers, according to witnesses who testified March 9 before the House Regulatory Affairs, Stimulus Oversight and Government Spending Subcommittee.
On behalf of the Reston, VA-based Brick Industry Association, Terry Schimmel testified (.pdf file) that the current PEL protects brick workers, and costs to meet a lower level would not result in demonstrated health benefits.
Michael Kamnikar, vice president of the Cleveland-based Forging Industry Association, in written testimony (.pdf file), called OSHA’s shift from a “more collaborative posture to a more adversarial approach toward business very alarming.” He noted that the recently withdrawn OSHA interpretation on noise standard enforcement had not gone through a typical rulemaking process and businesses spent “substantial amounts of time and money” responding to the interpretation.
Ranking member of the Oversight and Government Reform Committee Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-MD) cautioned against focusing solely on the cost of regulations, noting regulations can have a positive impact on the economy and families.