As we all know, the Trump administration has been promising major regulatory rollbacks. Since taking office, the administration has followed through on only a portion of that promise by focusing on environmental deregulation. Just yesterday, Scott Pruitt and the EPA rolled back Obama’s Clean Energy plan, apparently in an effort to boost the coal industry. There have been other environmental regulation rollbacks as well.
What we haven’t seen is much activity regarding OSHA health and safety regulation changes. Some of the proposed new rules set to trigger earlier this year were delayed, but not cancelled. This article summarizes the current situation at OSHA.
An interesting quote came from Bill Perry, OSHA’s current Directorate of Standards and Guidance:
“For now, we’re pretty much as an agency just keeping the ship straight, taking care of all of our business as usual. We’re kind of going along in the regulatory agenda, doing the research, and gathering the facts and information that an assistant secretary will ultimately want to know to figure out what they really want to focus on.”
One could argue that while Trump can easily argue that environmental rollbacks could help benefit manufacturing and industry, and thus jobs for his largely blue collar base, it’s going to be much tougher to rollback health and safety regulations that most certainly protect those same workers from workplace injuries and fatalities….. Only time will tell.