[Federal Register Volume 86, Number 230 (Friday, December 3, 2021)]
[Rules and Regulations]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2021-26268]
DEPARTMENT OF LABOR
Occupational Safety and Health Administration
29 CFR Parts 1910, 1915, 1917, 1918, 1926, and 1928
[Docket No. OSHA-2021-0007]
COVID-19 Vaccination and Testing; Emergency Temporary Standard
AGENCY: Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA),
Department of Labor.
ACTION: Interim final rule; extension of comment period.
SUMMARY: The period for submitting public comments is being extended by
45 days to allow stakeholders interested in the COVID-19 vaccination
and testing emergency temporary standard (ETS) additional time to
review the ETS and collect information and data necessary for comment.
DATES: The comment period for the interim final rule on the ETS, which
was published November 5, 2021 at 86 FR 6140, and effective on November
5, 2021, is extended. Comments on any aspect of the ETS and whether the
ETS should be adopted as a permanent standard must be submitted by
January 19, 2022.
Written comments: You may submit comments and attachments,
identified by Docket No. OSHA-2021-0007, electronically at
www.regulations.gov, which is the Federal e-Rulemaking Portal. Follow
the online instructions for making electronic submissions. The Federal
e-Rulemaking Portal at www.regulations.gov is the only way to submit
comments on this rule.
Instructions: All submissions must include the agency's name and
the docket number for this rulemaking (Docket No. OSHA-2021-0007). All
comments, including any personal information you provide, are placed in
the public docket without change and may be made available online at
www.regulations.gov. Therefore, OSHA cautions commenters about
submitting information they do not want made available to the public or
submitting materials that contain personal information (either about
themselves or others), such as Social Security Numbers and birthdates.
Docket: To read or download comments or other material in the
docket, go to Docket No. OSHA-2021-0007 at www.regulations.gov. All
comments and submissions are listed in the www.regulations.gov index;
however, some information (e.g., copyrighted material) is not publicly
available to read or download through that website. All comments and
submissions, including copyrighted material, are available for
inspection through the OSHA Docket Office. Documents submitted to the
docket by OSHA or stakeholders are assigned document identification
numbers (Document ID) for easy identification and retrieval. The full
Document ID is the docket number (OSHA-2021-0007) plus a unique four-
digit or five-digit code (e.g., OSHA-2021-0007-0001). When citing
materials in the docket, OSHA includes the term ``Document ID''
followed by the last four or five digits of the Document ID number
(e.g., Document ID 0001). Document ID numbers are used to identify
docket materials in this notice. However, OSHA identified supporting
information in the ETS (86 FR 61402) by author name and publication
year, when appropriate. The agency has also provided a spreadsheet in
the docket that identifies the full Document ID for each reference
cited in the ETS (see Document ID 0493). This information can be used
to search for a supporting document in the docket at
www.regulations.gov. Contact the OSHA Docket Office at 202-693-2350
(TTY number: 877-889-5627) for assistance with locating docket
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:
General information and press inquiries: Contact Frank Meilinger,
Director, Office of Communications, U.S. Department of Labor; telephone
(202) 693-1999; email OSHAComms@dol.gov.
For technical inquiries: Contact Andrew Levinson, Directorate of
Standards and Guidance, U.S. Department of Labor; telephone (202) 693-
1950; email ETS@dol.gov.
SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: On November 5, 2021, OSHA issued an ETS to
protect unvaccinated employees of large employers (100 or more
employees) from the risk of contracting COVID-19 by strongly
encouraging vaccination. Covered employers must develop, implement, and
enforce a mandatory COVID-19 vaccination policy, with an exception for
employers that instead adopt a policy requiring employees to either get
vaccinated or elect to undergo regular COVID-19 testing and wear a face
covering at work in lieu of vaccination.
The public comment period for the ETS was to close on December 6,
2021. However, OSHA received requests from several stakeholders to
extend the comment period. Most requested an additional 60 days, which
would result in a new comment deadline of February 4, 2022 (see, e.g.,
Document ID 0503; 0525; 0574; 0575; 0576; 0577; 0578). These
stakeholders explained that they need additional time to thoroughly
review the ETS, gather input from members, and prepare comprehensive
comments (see, e.g., Document ID 0503; 0525; 0574; 0575; 0576; 0577;
OSHA agrees to an extension and believes a 45-day extension of the
public comment period is sufficient and strikes an appropriate balance
between the agency's need for timely input and stakeholders' requests
for additional time to prepare comprehensive comments. Therefore, the
public comment period will be extended until January 19, 2022.
Authority and Signature
Douglas L. Parker, Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational
Safety and Health, U.S. Department of Labor, 200 Constitution Avenue
NW, Washington, DC 20210, authorized the preparation of this document
pursuant to the following authorities: Sections 4, 6, and 8 of the
Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 (29 U.S.C. 653, 655, 657);
Secretary of Labor's Order 8-2020 (85 FR 58393 (Sept. 18, 2020)); 29
CFR part 1911; and 5 U.S.C. 553.
Signed at Washington, DC, on November 29, 2021.
Douglas L. Parker,
Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health.
[FR Doc. 2021-26268 Filed 12-2-21; 8:45 am]
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