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OSHA National News Release

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National News Release: 08-162-NAT
Feb. 4, 2008
Contact: Sharon Worthy David Sims
Phone: 202-693-4676 202-693-1898

President's fiscal year 2009 budget request for U.S. Department of Labor's OSHA increases federal enforcement and compliance assistance efforts

WASHINGTON -- Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health Edwin G. Foulke Jr. today announced that President Bush has requested $501.7 million for the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) in fiscal year (FY) 2009. The request represents a boost of nearly $15.7 million over the fiscal year 2008 level.

Foulke explained that the increase will support agency efforts to improve workplace safety and health through compliance assistance and enforcement of occupational safety and health regulations and standards. "We are proposing to increase resources by more than $11.3 million to support enforcement programs, and $5.2 million to provide compliance assistance to employers and employees, especially small businesses," said Foulke. "The president's proposed budget provides us the resources we need to continue making a positive impact on workplace safety and health. This budget reinforces our balanced approach to employee safety and health - an approach that works."

Since 2001, OSHA has implemented a balanced approach consisting of aggressive enforcement, cooperative programs, outreach, education and compliance assistance, which has yielded the lowest workplace fatality and injury and illness rates on record. During this same period, the overall fatality rate has dropped by 9 percent, and it has fallen by 22 percent among Hispanic employees.

OSHA has plans to conduct 37,700 workplace inspections throughout FY 2009 and will continue to focus its resources on the most serious hazards and dangerous workplaces, and on industries with high rates of injuries and illnesses. OSHA's Enhanced Enforcement Program focuses on employers who ignore their safety and health obligations, while the agency's Local and National Emphasis Programs focus on specific industries or safety and health issues.

Under the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, employers are responsible for providing safe and healthful workplaces for their employees. OSHA's role is to assure the safety and health of America's working men and women by setting and enforcing standards; providing training, outreach and education; establishing partnerships; and encouraging continual process improvement in workplace safety and health. For more information, visit

NOTE: OSHA's FY 2009 budget breakdown chart follows this press release.

OSHA FY 2009 Proposed Budget (Highlights)

The president's FY 2009 proposed budget will enable OSHA to continue making progress in its efforts to keep driving workplace injuries, illnesses and loss of life toward zero. Results indicate that OSHA's strategies are working. Fatality and injury and illness rates have continued to decline to record lows. The injury and illness incidence rate of 4.4 per 100 employees for calendar year (CY) 2006 was the lowest ever recorded. Workplace fatality rates hit an all-time low in CY 2006 with 3.9 fatalities per 100,000 employees.

During FY 2009, OSHA will continue its focus on workplace safety and health through an overall balanced approach that includes:

  • Strong, fair and effective enforcement.
  • Outreach, education and compliance assistance.
  • Cooperative and voluntary programs.

Proposed FY 2009 Budget (Dollars in Millions)

FY 2008 FY2009 Change
Safety and Health Standards $16.6 $17.2 $0.6
Federal Enforcement 182.7 194.0 11.3
State Programs 89.5 91.1 1.6
Technical Support 21.7 22.6 0.9
Federal Compliance Assistance 71.4 76.6 5.2
State Consultation Grants 52.4 54.6 2.2
Training Grants 9.4 0.0 (9.4)
Safety and Health Statistics 31.5 34.1 2.6
Executive Direction and Administration 10.8 11.5 0.7
Total, OSHA Budget Authority $486.0 $501.7 $15.7
Full-time Equivalents 2,118 2,165 47

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U.S. Department of Labor releases are accessible on the Internet at The information in this news release will be made available in alternate format (large print, Braille, audiotape or disc) from the COAST office upon request. Please specify which news release when placing your request at 202-693-7828 or TTY 202-693-7755. The Labor Department is committed to providing America¿s employers and employees with easy access to understandable information on how to comply with its laws and regulations. For more information, please visit