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NAHB Calls on OSHA to Help Small Businesses

Monday, March 5, 2018

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The National Association of Home Builders recently spoke at a House subcommittee hearing to call on the Occupational Safety and Health Administration to expand its small business compliance assistance to aid in the safety of home builders and small business owners.

J. Gary Hill, a home builder from Greensboro, North Carolina, and 2018 chairman of the NAHB Construction Safety and Health Committee, spoke to lawmakers, telling them that reforming and improving how OSHA operates should be a top priority.

© iStock.com / photovs

The National Association of Home Builders recently spoke at a House subcommittee hearing to call on the Occupational Safety and Health Administration to expand its small business compliance assistance to aid in the safety of home builders and small business owners.

“In recent years, OSHA has unleashed a regulatory tsunami on the construction industry,” said Hill.

“The significant growth in the number and scope of regulations, along with the associated costs of these regulations, has raised concerns from NAHB members about OSHA’s heavy-handed enforcement practices and procedures.”

The NAHB cited the Small Business Administration, which claims that federal regulations cost small businesses 60 percent more per employee than large business—averaging to about $7,000 per employee.

Hill said the majority of those regulations come from OSHA, and while safety is a top priority in small home-building firms, good business sense is also front and center.

“It is no secret that safety saves lives—and money,” he said. “We have learned that the money saved through reduced workers’ compensation costs, lost time due to worker injuries and less time spent on accident claims and reports can be converted into improvements in the way employers operate their businesses. Moreover, a safe jobsite is also the key to retaining good employees and hiring new ones.”

Hill and the NAHB outlined three proposed steps for OSHA to take that would make regulatory compliance more “cost effective” and user-friendly. The steps included:

  • Focus agency efforts on providing employers with compliance assistance and training for existing regulations and standards so that more on regulatory burdens aren’t added;
  • Develop new and innovative ways to partner with employers to achieve compliance; and
  • Modernize methods to disseminate compliance assistance information to include video-based education segments and checklists viewable from computers, tablets and smartphones.

   

Tagged categories: Good Technical Practice; National Association of Home Builders (NAHB); North America; OSHA; OSHA; Regulations; Safety

Comment from Gregory Stoner, (3/5/2018, 1:31 PM)

I have been in construction for 45 years and see the improvement in safety for workers. If workers continue to be seriously injured short term or long term it should be unexceptable. The issue is that these regulations are new. They should have all been in place all these years. If they were your sons and daughters would you take precautions.


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