Republican offers alternative miner safety bill

West Virginia Republican Rep. Shelley Moore Capito last week introduced mine safety legislation, presenting it as an alternative to sweeping legislation from Democrats.

The Mine Safety Accountability and Improved Protection Act (H.R. 5788) removes some provisions of the Robert C. Byrd Miner Safety and Health Act of 2010 (H.R. 5663), including those that would amend the Occupational Safety and Health Act. Many Republicans objected to the provisions, saying OSH Act changes should not be included in a mine safety bill.

While acknowledging the Miner Safety and Health Act was a "good starting point" following the deaths of 29 miners last April at a West Virginia mine, Capito said in a press release that "sweeping regulatory reform does not automatically ensure miners' safety."

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