What’s on the Labor Department’s Regulatory Agenda?

by Katie Tracy

November 23, 2015

Late last week, the White House released its fall 2015 Unified Agenda—the semi-annual report on regulations under development or review by each federal agency. As usual, and therefore of little surprise, this latest agenda spells delay for a laundry list of critical safeguards at several agencies.

According to CPR senior analyst James Goodwin’s review of the regulatory agendas for the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), and several other agencies, several new protections will be delayed anywhere from two months to over a year.

A look at the Department of Labor’s regulatory agenda also signals extensive delays for some long-anticipated worker protections. Here is the status of rules under development at DOL classified as “major” or “economically significant” rules:

Agency

Rule

Spring 2015

Fall 2015

DOL/OSHA

Combustible Dust

 

Pre-rulemaking: expected to initiate small business review panel by 02/2016

Pre-rulemaking: expected to initiate small business review panel by 08/2016

*6 month delay

DOL/OSHA

 

Preventing Backover Injuries and Fatalities

 

Long-Term Action: expected to initiate small business review panel by 06/2016

Pre-rulemaking: expected to initiate small business review panel 09/2016

*3 month delay

DOL/OSHA

 

Walking Working Surfaces and Personal Fall Protection Systems

Final: Final rule expected 8/2015

Final: Final rule expected 04/2016

*8 month delay

DOL/OSHA

Infectious Diseases

 

Long-Term Action: Proposed rule expected 12/2016

Long-Term Action: Proposed rule expected 12/2016

*no movement expected

DOL/OSHA

Injury and Illness Prevention Program

Long-Term Action: Next action undetermined

Long-Term Action: Next action undetermined

*no movement expected

DOL/OSHA

Update to the Hazard Communication Standard

 

Long-Term Action: Next action undetermined

Long-Term Action: Next action undetermined

*No movement expected

DOL/OSHA

Occupational Exposure to Beryllium

 

Proposal: Proposed rule expected 05/2015

Proposal: Analysis of comments on proposed rule expected 12/2015

*moving ahead

 

DOL/OSHA

Occupational Exposure to Crystalline Silica

Proposal: Post-Hearing Comment Review Period expected 07/2014

Final: Final rule expected 02/2016

*moving ahead

DOL/ETA

Temporary Non-Agricultural Employment of H-2B Aliens in the U.S.

 

Final: Comment period on interim final rule expected completion 06/29/2015

Long-Term Action: Next action undetermined

+ indefinite delay

DOL/ETA

Modernizing the Permanent Labor Certification Program

Proposal: Proposed rule expected 12/2015

Proposal: Proposed rule expected 04/2016

+ 4 month delay

DOL/ETA

Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act

Proposal: Comment period on proposed rule expected to conclude 06/15/2015

Proposal: Analysis of comments on proposed rule expected 11/2015

+moving ahead

 

*statutory deadline for final rule is 01/18/2016

DOL/ETA

Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act; Joint Rule with the U.S. Dep’t of Education...

Proposal: Comment period on proposed rule expected to conclude 06/15/2015

Proposal: Analysis of comments on proposed rule expected 11/2015

+moving ahead

 

*statutory deadline for final rule is 01/18/2016

DOL/EBSA

Improved Fee Disclosure for Welfare Plans

Long-Term Action: Next action undetermined

Long-Term Action: Next action undetermined

+no movement expected

DOL/EBSA

Conflict of Interest Rule- Investment Advice

Proposal: Comment period on second proposed rule expected to end 07/06/2015

Proposal: Analysis of comments on proposed rule expected 12/2015

+moving ahead

DOL/EBSA

Final Rules under the Affordable Care Act for Grandfathered Plans…

No entry in Spring Agenda

Final: Final rule expected 11/2015

+moving ahead

DOL/WHD

Establishing Paid Sick Leave for Contractors

 

No entry in Spring Agenda

Proposal: Proposed rule expected 02/2016

+moving ahead

 

*statutory deadline for final rule is 09/30/2016

DOL/WHD

Defining and Delimiting the Exemptions for Executive, Administrative, Professional, Outside Sales, and Computer Employees

Proposal: Proposed rule expected 06/2015

Final: Final rule expected 07/2016

+moving ahead

 

 

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Also from Katie Tracy

Katie Tracy, J.D., joined CPR as a workers’ rights policy analyst in May 2015. Her previous experience includes working for more than two years as a regulatory policy analyst at the Center for Effective Government, where she advocated for strong regulations to protect health, safety, and the environment.

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