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Notice

Access to Employee Exposure and Medical Records; Extension of the Office of Management and Budget's (OMB) Approval of Information Collection (Paperwork) Requirements

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AGENCY:

Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), Labor.

ACTION:

Request for public comment.

SUMMARY:

OSHA solicits public comments concerning its proposal to extend OMB approval of the information collection requirements contained in its Regulation on Access to Employee Exposure and Medical Records (29 CFR 1910.1020).

DATES:

Comments must be submitted (postmarked or received) by June 25, 2010.

ADDRESSES:

Electronically: You may submit comments and attachments electronically at http://www.regulations.gov, which is the Federal eRulemaking Portal. Follow the instructions online for submitting comments.

Facsimile: If your comments, including attachments, are not longer than 10 pages, you may fax them to the OSHA Docket Office at (202) 693-1648.

Mail, hand delivery, express mail, messenger, or courier service: When using this method, you must submit three copies of your comments and attachments to the OSHA Docket Office, Docket No. OSHA-2009-0043, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Safety and Health Administration, Room N-2625, 200 Constitution Avenue, NW., Washington, DC 20210, telephone (202) 693-2350, (OSHA's TTY number is (877) 889-5627). Deliveries (hand, express mail, messenger, and courier service) are accepted during the Department of Labor's and Docket Office's normal business hours, 8:15 a.m. to 4:45 p.m., e.t.

Instructions: All submissions must include the Agency name and OSHA docket number for the Information Collection Request (ICR) (OSHA-2009-0043). All comments, including any personal information you provide, are placed in the public docket without change, and may be made available online at http://www.regulations.gov. For further information on submitting comments see the “Public Participation” heading in the section of this notice titled “Supplementary Information.”

Docket: To read or download comments or other material in the docket, go to http://www.regulations.gov or the OSHA Docket Office at the address above. All documents in the docket (including this Federal Register notice) are listed in the http://www.regulations.gov index; however, some information (e.g., copyrighted material) is not publicly available to read or download through the Web site. All submissions, including copyrighted material, are available for inspection and copying at the OSHA Docket Office. You may contact Todd Owen at the address below to obtain a copy of the ICR.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Jamaa N. Hill, Directorate of Standards and Guidance, OSHA, U.S. Department of Labor, Room N-3609, 200 Constitution Avenue, NW., Washington, DC 20210; telephone: (202) 693-2222.

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

I. Background

The Department of Labor, as part of its continuing effort to reduce paperwork and respondent (i.e., employer) burden, conducts a preclearance consultation program to provide the public with an opportunity to comment on proposed and continuing information collection requirements in accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (PRA-95) (44 U.S.C. 3506(c)(2)(A)). This program ensures that information is in the desired format, reporting burden (time and cost) is minimal, collection instruments are clearly understood, and OSHA's estimate of the information collection burden is accurate. The Occupational Safety and Health Act of the 1970 (the OSH Act) (29 U.S.C. 651 et seq.) authorizes information collection by employers as necessary or appropriate for enforcement of the OSH Act or for developing information regarding the causes and prevention of occupational injuries, illnesses, and accidents (29 U.S.C. 657). The Act also requires that OSHA obtain such information with minimum burden upon employers, especially those operating small businesses, and to reduce to the maximum extent feasible unnecessary duplication of efforts in obtaining information (29 U.S.C. 657).

Under the authority granted by the Act, OSHA published a health regulation governing access to worker exposure monitoring data and medical records. This regulation does not require employers to collect any information or to establish any new systems of records. Rather, it requires that employers provide workers, their designated representatives, and OSHA with access to worker exposure monitoring and medical records, and any analyses resulting from these records that employers must maintain under OSHA's toxic chemical and harmful physical agent standards. In this regard, the regulation specifies requirements for record access, record retention, worker information, trade secret management, and record transfer. Accordingly, the Agency attributes the burden hours and costs associated with exposure monitoring and measurement, medical surveillance, and the other activities required to generate the data governed by the regulation to the health standards that specify these activities; therefore, OSHA did not include these burden hours and costs in the ICR.

Access to exposure and medical information enables workers and their designated representatives to become directly involved in identifying and controlling occupational health hazards, as well as managing and preventing occupationally-related health impairment and disease. Providing the Agency with access to the records permits it to ascertain whether or not employers are complying with the regulation, as well as the recordkeeping requirements of its other health standards; therefore, OSHA access provides additional assurance that workers and their designated representative are able to obtain the data they need to conduct their analyses.

II. Special Issues for Comment

OSHA has a particular interest in comments on the following issues:

  • Whether the proposed information collection requirements are necessary for the proper performance of the Agency's functions to protect workers, including whether the information is useful;
  • The accuracy of OSHA's estimate of the burden (time and costs) of the information collection requirement, including the validity of the methodology and assumptions used;
  • The quality, utility, and clarity of the information collected; and
  • Ways to minimize the burden on employers who must comply; for Start Printed Page 21663example, by using automated or other technological information collection and transmission techniques.

III. Proposed Actions

OSHA is requesting that OMB extend its approval of the collection of information requirements specified by the Regulation on Access to Employee Exposure and Medical Records (29 CFR 1910.1020). The Agency is requesting to decrease its current burden hour total from 720,187 hours to 664,993, a total decrease of 55,194 hours. This decrease is the result of the Agency using the latest NAICS codes covered by the Regulation to update the number of establishments. The number of establishments decreased from 5,108,244 to 4,790,859. The Agency will summarize the comments submitted in response to this notice, and will include this summary in its request to OMB to extend the approval of these information collection requirements.

Type of Review: Extension of a currently approved collection.

Title: Access to Employee Exposure and Medical Records (29 CFR 1910.1020).

OMB Control Number: 1218-0065.

Affected Public: Business or other for-profits; Federal government; State, local, or tribal governments.

Number of Respondents: 690,591.

Frequency: On occasion.

Average Time per Response: Varies from five minutes (.08 hour) for employers to provide OSHA with access to records to 10 minutes (.17 hour) to maintain worker records.

Estimated Total Burden Hours: 664,993 hours.

Estimated Cost (Operation and Maintenance): $0.

IV. Public Participation—Submission of Comments on This Notice and Internet Access to Comments and Submissions

You may submit comments in response to this notice as follows: (1) Electronically at http://www.regulations.gov, which is the Federal eRulemaking Portal; (2) by facsimile (fax); or (3) by hard copy. All comments, attachments, and other material must identify the Agency name and the OSHA docket number for the ICR (Docket No. OSHA-2009-0043). You may supplement electronic submissions by uploading document files electronically. If you wish to mail additional materials in reference to an electronic or facsimile submission, you must submit them to the OSHA Docket Office (see the section of this notice titled ADDRESSES). The additional materials must clearly identify your electronic comments by your name, date, and the docket number so the Agency can attach them to your comments.

Because of security procedures, the use of regular mail may cause a significant delay in the receipt of comments. For information about security procedures concerning the delivery of materials by hand, express delivery, messenger, or courier service, please contact the OSHA Docket Office at (202) 693-2350 (TTY (877) 889-5627).

Comments and submissions are posted without change at http://www.regulations.gov. Therefore, OSHA cautions commenters about submitting personal information such as social security numbers and date of birth. Although all submissions are listed in the http://www.regulations.gov index, some information (e.g., copyrighted material) is not publicly available to read or download through this Web site. All submissions, including copyrighted material, are available for inspection and copying at the OSHA Docket Office. Information on using the http://www.regulations.gov Web site to submit comments and access the docket is available at the Web site's “User Tips” link. Contact the OSHA Docket Office for information about materials not available through the Web site, and for assistance in using the Internet to locate docket submissions.

V. Authority and Signature

David Michaels, PhD, MPH, Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health, directed the preparation of this notice. The authority for this notice is the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. 3506 et seq.) and Secretary of Labor's Order No. 5-2007 (72 FR 31160).

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Signed at Washington, DC, on April 20, 2010.

David Michaels,

Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health.

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[FR Doc. 2010-9544 Filed 4-23-10; 8:45 am]

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