Baltimore Workers’ Compensation Lawyers: Proposed Budget Cuts & OSHAJune 16, 2017
The President has proposed a 21 percent reduction to the Department of Labor’s budget for the fiscal year of 2018. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), which falls under the Department of Labor, will also be affected by these budget cuts. Instead of the $554 million that is currently allocated to OSHA, the 2018 budget only allocates $543 million, including $130 million for state and federal compliance programs. In addition to the slight reduction in funding, the money will be distributed differently than it has been in the past.
The 2018 proposed budget calls for a slight increase for the Department of Labor’s Mine Safety and Health Administration, given the current administration’s approach towards coal energy. Yet, the budget for the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) will be slashed from $335 million to $200 million. In addition, the U.S. Chemical Safety Board, which is an independent federal agency that looks into accidents like chemical explosions, will be eliminated if the budget passes.
Industry Reactions to the Budget Proposal
From the Department of Labor to the American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA), industry officials have voiced their opinions about the 2018 proposed budget. Alexander Acosta, Secretary of Labor, supported the budget saying that it reflects the department’s core mission and commitment to making sure that all Americans are able to secure good jobs that offer safe working environments, in a way that is cost effective. The White House also claims that the budget will protect workers and help employers have a better understanding of worker protection laws by emphasizing compliance assistance and outreach.
Critics of the proposed budget include AIHA chief executive officer Lawrence Sloan, who expressed his concern over cuts to the Harwood training program, NIOSH, and to the U.S. Chemical Safety Board. Other critics suggest that the cuts could result in a shift from enforcement to compliance assistance and cooperative programs. In addition, they are concerned that the budget will result in fewer resources for OSHA and DOL’s regulatory and enforcement programs. An industry official criticized the budgets cuts, claiming that employers should continue to be vigilant when it comes to remaining compliant with wage and hour, OSHA, and other DOL rules.
Baltimore Workers’ Compensation Lawyers at LeViness, Tolzman & Hamilton Advocate for Injured Workers
If you or someone you love has been seriously injured at work, the experienced Baltimore Workers’ Compensation lawyers at LeViness, Tolzman & Hamilton can help. Whether your injury is relatively minor or one that has left you with a permanent disability, we are on your side and will take the necessary steps to ensure that you receive the full benefits to which you are entitled. Depending on your injury, your employer’s Workers’ Compensation plan should cover everything from lost wages and medical bills to disability. To set up a free confidential consultation with one of our experienced Workers’ Compensation lawyers, do not hesitate to call us at 844-556-4LAW (4529) or contact us on online.