AGC Leads Industry Charge and Stops Elimination of Cal/OSHA Standards Board
AGC of California, working with the State Laborers and Operating Engineers, led the charge against the Governor’s proposal to eliminate the Cal/OSHA Standards Board. Both the Senate and Assembly Budget Committees have agreed to shelve the Governor’s proposal in the face of strong support for the Board from AGC, Labor, and business interests.
Assemblywoman Joan Buchanan, Chair of Assembly Budget Subcommittee, was particularly helpful in supporting AGC and industry’s position, and the vote in her committee on March 7 was unanimous to retain the Standards Board. The Senate Budget Subcommittee likewise was helpful and voted to retain the Standards Board when it voted on the measure on March 8.
AGC has been actively engaged in leading the efforts to prevent elimination of the Cal/OSHA Standards Board since the Administration first proposed it as part of their May 2011 Budget Revise. Industry opposition took it off the plate last year, but earlier this year the Administration again introduced the proposal to eliminate the Board and instead create an Advisory Council within DOSH to consider safety and health regulations. The construction industry was unanimously opposed to this proposal since both management and labor have found the Standards Board to be fair and balanced in their decision making.
As the industry coalition pointed out, the Cal/OSHA Standards Board has been very successful in developing enforceable safety standards for the California workforce. The diversified makeup of the Standards Board, which includes labor, management and safety and health professionals, helps ensure a balanced approach to developing these standards and provides a process that ultimately results in greater compliance. The AGC-led industry coalition helped drive home the point that elimination of the Board would not have resulted in any real budgetary savings since the Board is funded through employer contributions.