Federal OSHA announced Feb. 14 that it is withdrawing its proposal to reconsider and revoke Arizona’s State Plan for occupational safety and health.
This withdrawal will leave the Arizona State Plan in place.
OSHA announced April 21, 2022, that it was proposing reconsideration and revocation of the Arizona State Plan after a “nearly decade-long pattern of failures to adopt adequate maximum penalty levels, occupational safety and health standards, National Emphasis Programs and the COVID-19 Healthcare Emergency Temporary Standard.”
The federal agency accepted public comments on the revocation proposal, with the state submitting a public comment advising that its State Plan had completed significant actions to address the concerns that had been identified.
Arizona’s actions included:
- adopting outstanding federal standards and directives
- enacting state laws to ensure penalty levels track with federal OSHA’s levels, and
- authorizing adoption of an emergency temporary standard when either OSHA or the Industrial Commission of Arizona determines that grave danger criteria are met.
These actions led to OSHA postponing a scheduled public hearing and reopening the comment period until Oct. 14, 2022, to allow stakeholders another opportunity to comment on the proposed revocation.
While federal OSHA has withdrawn its proposal to revoke the Arizona State Plan, the agency is still looking into public reports of a downward trend in inspections in the plan’s enforcement program.
Federal OSHA is taking those reports seriously and is “actively working with the Arizona State Plan to address these issues.”