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• Publication Date: 12/19/2003
• Publication Type: Notice
• Fed Register #: 68:70840-70842
• Standard Number: 1910.1020
• Title: Standard on Access to Employee Exposure and Medical Records (29 CFR 1910.1020), Extension of the Office of Management and Budget's (OMB) Approval of Information Collection (Paperwork) Requirements

DEPARTMENT OF LABOR

Occupational Safety and Health Administration

[Docket No. ICR-1218-0065(2004)]

Standard on Access to Employee Exposure and Medical Records (29 CFR 1910.1020), Extension of the Office of Management and Budget's (OMB) Approval of Information Collection (Paperwork) Requirements

AGENCY:
Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), Labor.

ACTION: Request for comment.

SUMMARY: OSHA solicits comments concerning its proposal to decrease the existing burden-hour estimates, and to extend OMB approval of the information collection requirements of the regulation titled Access to Employee Exposure and Medical Records (29 CFR 1910.1020).

DATES: Comments must be submitted by the following dates:

Hard Copy: Your comments must be submitted (postmarked or sent) by February 17, 2004.

Facsimile and electronic transmission: Your comments must be sent by February 17, 2004.

I. Submission of Comments

Regular mail, express delivery, hand-delivery, and messenger service: Submit your comments and attachments to the OSHA Docket Office, Docket No. ICR 1218-0065(2004), Room N-2625, U.S. Department of Labor, 200 Constitution Avenue, NW., Washington, DC 20210. OSHA Docket Office and Department of Labor hours of operation are 8:15 a.m. to 4:45 p.m., e.s.t.

Facsimile: If your comments, including any attachments, are 10 pages or fewer, you may fax them to the OSHA Docket Office at (202) 693-1648. You must include the docket number of this document, Docket No. ICR 1218-0065(2004), in your comments.

Electronic: You may submit comments, but not attachments, throughout the Internet at http://ecomments.osha.gov/.

II. Obtaining Copies of Supporting Statement for the Information Collection

The Supporting Statement for the information Collection is available for downloading from OSHA's Web site at http://www.osha.gov. The supporting statement is available for inspection and copying in the OSHA Docket Office, at the address listed above. A printed copy of the supporting statement can be obtained by contacting Todd Owen at (202) 693-2222

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Todd Owen, 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.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

I. Submission of Comments on This Notice and Internet Access to Comments and Submissions


You may submit comments in response to this document by (1) hard copy, (2) fax transmission (facsimile), or (3) electronically through the OSHA Web page. Please note you cannot attach materials such as studies or journal articles to electronic comments. If you have additional materials, you must submit three copies of them to the OSHA Docket Office at the address above. The additional materials must clearly identify your electronic comments by name, date, subject and docket number so we can attach them to your comments. Because of security-related problems there may be a significant delay in the receipt of comments by regular mail. Please contact the OSHA Docket Office at (202) 693-2350 for information about security procedures concerning the delivery of materials by express delivery, hand delivery and messenger service.

II. 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 costs) is minimal, collection instruments are clearly understood, and OSHA's estimate of the information collection burden is correct. The Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 (the Act) authorizes information collection by employers as necessary or appropriate for enforcement of the Act or for developing information regarding the causes and prevention of occupational injuries, illnesses, and accidents (29 U.S.C. 657). Under the authority granted by the OSH Act, OSHA published a health regulation governing access to employee 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 employees, their designated representatives, and OSHA with access to employee exposure-monitoring and medical records, and any analyses resulting from these records, whether or not the records are mandated by specific occupational safety and health standards. In this regard, the regulation specifies requirements for record access, record retention, employee 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 this ICR.

Access to exposure and medical information enables employees 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 employees and their designated representatives are able to obtain the data they need to conduct their analyses.

III. 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 requirements, 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 example, by using automated or other technological information collection and transmission techniques.
IV. Proposed Actions

OSHA proposes to decrease the existing burden-hour estimates, and to extend OMB approval of the information collection requirements of the Access to Employee Exposure and Medical Records Standard (29 CFR 1910.1020). The reduction is mainly a result of a reduction in the estimated number of establishments affected by this regulation.

OSHA will summarize the comments submitted in response to this notice, and will include this summary in the request to OMB to extend the approval of the information collection requirements contained in the Access to Employee Exposure and Medical Records Standard (29 CFR 1910.1020).

Type of Review: Extension of a currently-approved information collection requirement.

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

OMB Number: 1218-0065.

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

Number of Respondents; 717,268.

Frequency: On occasion.

Total Responses: 4,577,613.

Average Time per Response: Varies from 5 minutes (.08 hour) to 10 minutes (.17 hour).

Estimated Total Burden Hours: 561,308.

Estimated Cost (Operation and Maintenance): $0.

III. Authority and Signature

John L. Henshaw, 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), and Secretary of Labor's Order No. 5-2002 (67 FR 65008).

Signed in Washington, DC on December 15, 2003.

John L. Henshaw,
Assistant Secretary of Labor.


[FR Doc. 03-31288 Filed 12-18-03; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 4510-26-M



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