Nearly five years after the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) considered rejecting Arizona’s State Plan for Occupational Safety and Health, things are back on track for the two entities.

In 2014, through a publication in the Federal Register, OSHA proposed a rejection of the state’s residential construction fall protection statute as had been enacted by the state legislature, published previously as Arizona Revised Statute (A.R.S. 23-492). The proposed rejection also contained language indicative of OSHA reconsidering final approval of the State plan (pursuant to 29 CFR 1953.6(e) and 29 CFR 1902.47). Six months later, after receiving and reviewing public comments on the proposed rejection and reconsideration, OSHA did just that, rendering its final decision to reject the Arizona State Plan’s residential construction fall protection statute (80 FR 6652) via a document published in the Federal Register.

The state of Arizona countered this by including a conditional repeal provision in Arizona SB 1307 that allowed A.R.S. 23-492 to be repealed by operation of law if OSHA rejected the state statute and published the a Federal Register document stating as much.

OSHA then “deferred its decision on the simultaneously proposed action of reconsidering the State Plan’s final approval, to allow for Arizona’s repeal of the rejected statute to take effect and to allow for Arizona’s subsequent enforcement of a standard at least as effective” as OSHA’s.

Recent changes to the Arizona state plan include adopting OSHA’s residential construction fall protection standard (29 CFR part 1926, subpart M) and the federal agency’s observation of the subsequent enforcement has found that Arizona has been successfully implementing the changes. This has led OSHA to publish in the most recent Federal Register, published on July 26, that it is withdrawing its proposal to reconsider the Arizona State Plan’s final approval status.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *