Updated 1/30/23 by TRI Lobbyist, Craig S. Brightup; photo by Andy Feliciotti on Unsplash
Republicans control the House 222-213 and Democrats the Senate 51-49. With Speaker McCarthy (R-CA) in place the House was able to pass a rules package mostly focused on preventing more gigantic omnibus bills, and Republicans’ slim majority also means McCarthy will only bring up bills that have nearly unanimous Republican support.
118th Congress – Committees
Rep. Virginia Foxx (R-NC), a friend of the roofing industry and advocate for career and technical education, will chair the House Committee on Education and the Workforce which oversees DOL and OSHA. Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) will chair the Senate Health Education Labor and Pensions Committee, but the top Republican will be Sen. Bill Cassidy (R-LA) who has a firm grasp of DOL, OSHA and National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) issues from a business perspective.
Unified Regulatory Agenda
The Biden Administration released its Fall 2022 Regulatory Agenda two weeks ago and agency actions include:
- EPA – National Ambient Air Quality Standards, Clean Water Act (Waters of the United States)
- FTC – Noncompete Agreements
- NLRB – Joint Employer
- DOL – Independent Contractor, Overtime
- OSHA – Heat Illness, PPE in Construction, Worker Walkaround Representation, Tracking of Workplace Injuries and Illnesses, Revoking AZ’s State Plan
When a proposed reg is deemed to have “a significant impact on a substantial number of small entities,” the Small Business Regulatory Enforcement Fairness Act (SBREFA) requires that OSHA conduct Small Business Review panel. Here’s more info on some OSHA agenda items per a Jan. 20 SBA Office of Advocacy OSHA Roundtable:
- Heat Illness standard – OSHA plans a SBREFA panel in June.
- Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) in Construction – at OMB/OIRA since Sept. 2022.
- Worker Walkaround Representation Designation Process – could be a repeat of OSHA’s Letter of Interpretation in the Obama Administration allowing outside union reps to accompany CSHOs during inspections even if a business’s employees weren’t unionized. The LOI was withdrawn and this reg could come in May.
- Improve Tracking of Workplace Illness and Injuries – a redux of Obama Administration requirements for certain businesses to submit 300 – 301 logs in addition to 300A summaries and have them posted on the internet.
- Revisions to Table 1’s engineering controls in the Silica Standard for Construction – now a Long-Term action.
Roofing Day in DC 2023
Roofing Day in DC starts with an April 18 kick-off and reception followed by a morning program and afternoon Hill visits on April 19. The three issues will be workforce shortage solutions, funding for DOE’s Building Technologies Office, and making permanent the 20% qualified business income deduction for pass-throughs (IRC Sec. 199A). TRIA’s delegation will have meetings in addition to Roofing Day’s and those on the Government Relations Committee and others planning to attend should arrive April 17 for a dinner, with meetings the next morning leading up to Roofing Day events that afternoon. There will also likely be a TRIA function the morning of April 20 so participants can catch flights later that day. Here are links for Roofing Day www.nrca.net/roofingday and the Grand Hyatt room block (book your hotel!).