As I was saying …

The return of the regulators

Federal regulatory agencies are required by law to issue semiannual summaries of regulations expected to have a significant economic impact. In 2012, like every year, those regulations were to have been issued in April and October. Well, they weren't. Instead, one summary was published Dec. 21, 2012 (the Friday before Christmas). The law simply was ignored.

I suppose we should be grateful for small favors. We now have seen the agenda, and to put it politely, a small army of speed readers would hang themselves before they were able to finish it.

The rules will come, and they will keep coming. During the past 90 days alone, 5,500 proposed regulations have been issued by federal agencies.

We now know our friends at the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) have a busy year planned. Expect to see a notice of proposed rule making regarding worker exposure to silica (found in cement products) in May, new reporting requirements for tracking ergonomic injuries, and at least more discussion about what OSHA calls its Injury and Illness Protection Program (I2P2) whereby employers must identify hazards in the workplace and find solutions for them regardless of whether they are regulated separately. A Notice of Proposed Rulemaking for I2P2 is scheduled for December.