Enzi introduces bill to preserve VPP

In the face of potential budget cuts and critical reports on the performance of OSHA's Voluntary Protection Programs, Sen. Mike Enzi (R-WY) on Tuesday introduced legislation that would "preserve" the programs.

In the most recent proposed fiscal year 2011 budget for the Department of Labor, officials said they plan to slash funding for the program to focus OSHA's priorities on companies that fail in their obligations to ensure a safe workplace.

The Voluntary Protection Program Act (S. 3257) would protect VPP from such budget cuts. The bill, co-sponsored by Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-LA), also would expand the program to include more small businesses.

In a press release, Enzi called VPP the most successful program in creating a workplace safety culture. Last June, a Government Accountability Office report (.pdf file) questioned the program's integrity in light of evidence that some participants were not meeting the program's strenuous safety standards.

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