• Information Date:
  • Agreement Agency:
    Small Business Administration (SBA)

Memorandum of Agreement
Regarding Flexibility in Rulemaking
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration
The Small Business Administration

  1. Purpose

    The purposes of this Memorandum of Agreement, agreed to by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) are:

    (a) To assure that any new rules and regulations issued by OSHA will be applied whenever possible in a flexible manner, taking into account the size and nature of the regulated businesses while fulfilling missions of the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 and the Small Business Act of 1958.

    (b) To establish a program by means of which OSHA and SBA can work cooperatively to carry out the provisions of paragraph (a), thus providing the positive means of conveying to OSHA in connection with its standards- setting responsibilities, the special concerns and unique circumstances of small business.

  2. Interagency Coordination

    The Special Assistant for Small Business in OSHA and the Chief Counsel for Advocacy in SBA will be responsible for the coordination and implementation of activities under this Agreement.

  3. Implementation

    OSHA and the SBA, through its Chief Counsel for Advocacy, intend to promote flexibility in OSHA rulemaking by:

    (a) Gathering and disseminating data and information during the rulemaking process as early as possible.

    (b) Identifying small businesses by type of industry and industrial classification that may potentially be affected by the rule.

    (c) Providing potentially affected small businesses opportunities, including public hearings and conferences, to present information, data, or their concerns to OSHA as early as possible during the rulemaking process.

    (d) Providing the Office of Advocacy and small businesses identified as potentially affected an opportunity to present suggested alternatives to minimize the financial and technical burdens of the proposed rule on small businesses.

    (e) Providing information on special characteristics of affected small businesses in order to facilitate the designing of educational, training, and consultative programs to assist small businesses in meeting objectives of the rules.

  4. Cooperative Program

    (a) As early as possible in the rulemaking process for which a regulatory analysis is being performed under the requirements of Executive Order 12044, or under the President's memorandum of November 16, 1979, OSHA will give notice to the Small Business Administration, through the Chief Counsel for Advocacy, of its intent to propose rules and guidelines and notice of data needed to implement flexible rulemaking for small businesses.

    (b) Upon such notice, the Chief Counsel for Advocacy will gather the requisite data from the small business community and transmit it to OSHA.

    (c) The Chief Counsel for Advocacy will prepare analyses and recommendations on proposed rules. The Special Assistant for Small Business will consult with the Chief Counsel for Advocacy and small businesses on proposed rules and make appropriate recommendations to the Assistant Secretary.

    (d) The Special Assistant for Small Business will also arrange for OSHA to furnish to any small business groups desiring to participate in OSHA rulemaking information of a technical nature that is necessary to a clear understanding of a rule, the rulemaking process or compliance with a rule.

    Eula Bingham,
    Assistant Secretary of the
    Department of Labor for
    Occupational Safety and Health

    A. Vernon Weaver,
    Administrator for the
    Small Business Administration

    Executed this 10th day of April 1980.