Federal Registers - Table of Contents Federal Registers - Table of Contents
• Publication Date: 06/30/2008
• Publication Type: Proposed Rules
• Fed Register #: 73:36823-36825
• Standard Number: 1910; 1911; 1911.4; 1911.16; 1915
• Title: General Working Conditions in Shipyard Employment

[Federal Register: June 30, 2008 (Volume 73, Number 126)]
[Proposed Rules]               
[Page 36823-36825]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]
[DOCID:fr30jn08-23]                         

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DEPARTMENT OF LABOR

Occupational Safety and Health Administration

29 CFR Parts 1910 and 1915

[Docket No. OSHA-S049-2006-0675 (formerly OSHA Docket No. S-049)]
RIN 1218-AB50
 
General Working Conditions in Shipyard Employment

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

ACTION: Proposed rule; notice of informal public hearings.

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SUMMARY: OSHA is scheduling informal public hearings on the proposed 
rule on general working conditions in shipyard employment.

DATES: Informal public hearings: The hearings will begin at 9:30 a.m., 
on the following dates:
     September 9, 2008, in Washington, DC; and
     October 21, 2008, in Seattle, WA.
    If necessary, the hearing will continue at the same time on 
subsequent days at each location.
    Notice of intention to appear at the hearing: Interested persons 
who intend to present testimony or question witnesses at either the 
Washington, DC, or Seattle, WA, hearing must submit (transmit, send, 
postmark, deliver) a notice of their intention to do so by July 18, 
2008.
    Hearing testimony and documentary evidence: Interested persons who 
request more than 10 minutes to present testimony or who intend to 
submit documentary evidence at the hearing must submit (transmit, send, 
postmark, deliver) the full text of their testimony and all documentary 
evidence by August 8, 2008.

ADDRESSES:
    Informal public hearings: The Washington, DC, hearing will be held 
in the auditorium of the U.S. Department of Labor, 200 Constitution 
Avenue, NW., Washington, DC 20210. OSHA will announce the address of 
the Seattle, WA, hearing in a later Federal Register document.
    Notice of intention to appear, hearing testimony and documentary 
evidence: You may submit (transmit, send, postmark, deliver) your 
notice of intention to appear, hearing testimony, and documentary 
evidence, identified by docket number OSHA-S049-2006-0675, by any of 
the following methods:
     Federal eRulemaking Portal: http://www.regulations.gov. 
Follow the instructions online for electronically submitting materials, 
including attachments;
     Fax: If your written submission does not exceed 10 pages, 
including attachments, you may fax it to the OSHA Docket Office at 
(202) 693-1648; or
     Regular mail, express delivery, hand delivery, and 
messenger and courier service: Submit your materials to the OSHA Docket 
Office, Docket No. OSHA-S049-2006-0675, U.S. Department of Labor, Room 
N-2625, 200 Constitution Avenue, NW., Washington, DC 20210; telephone 
(202) 693-2350 (TTY number (877) 889-5627). Deliveries (express mail, 
hand delivery, and messenger and courier service) are accepted during 
the Department of Labor's and OSHA Docket Office's normal hours of 
operation, 8:15 a.m. to 4:45 p.m., e.t.
    Instructions: All submissions must include the Agency name and 
docket number for this rulemaking (Docket No. OSHA-S049-2006-0675). All 
submissions, including any personal information, are placed in the 
public docket without change and may be available online at http://
www.regulations.gov. Therefore, OSHA cautions you about submitting 
certain personal information such as social security numbers and 
birthdates. Because of security-related procedures, the use of regular 
mail may cause a significant delay in the receipt of your submissions. 
For information about security-related procedures for submitting 
materials by express delivery, hand delivery, messenger, or courier 
service, please contact the OSHA Docket Office. For additional 
information on submitting notices of intention to appear, hearing 
testimony or documentary evidence, see the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION 
section of this notice.
    Docket: To read or download background documents as well as
comments and materials submitted in response to the proposed rule or 
this Federal Register notice, go to Docket No. OSHA-S049-2006-0675 at 
http://www.regulations.gov. All submissions 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 
page. All submissions and other material related to the proposed rule 
are available for public inspection and copying in the OSHA Docket 
Office. For information on reading or downloading materials in the 
docket and obtaining materials not available through the Web page, 
please contact the OSHA Docket Office.
    Electronic copies of this Federal Register notice are available at 
http://www.regulations.gov. This notice as well as news releases and 
other relevant information also are available at OSHA's Web page at 
s.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:
    Press inquiries: Jennifer Ashley, OSHA, Office of Communications, 
Room N-3647, U.S. Department of Labor, 200 Constitution Avenue, NW., 
Washington, DC 20210; telephone (202) 693-1999.
    Technical information: Joseph Daddura, OSHA, Office of Maritime 
Standards, Room N-3609, U.S. Department of Labor, 200 Constitution 
Avenue, NW., Washington, DC 20210; telephone (202) 693-2222.
    Hearings: Ms. Veneta Chatmon, OSHA, Office of Communications, Room 
N-3647; 200 Constitution Avenue, NW., Washington, DC 20210; telephone 
(202) 693-1999; e-mail chatmon.veneta@dol.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: On December 20, 2007, OSHA published a 
proposed rule to revise the standards on general working conditions in 
shipyard employment (72 FR 72451). The deadline for submitting written 
comments and hearing requests was March 19, 2008. OSHA received several 
hearing requests and is scheduling hearings to begin on September 9, 
2008, in Washington, DC, and October 21, 2008, in Seattle, WA. This 
notice describes the procedures the public must use to participate in 
the hearings.
    Informal public hearings--purpose, rules and procedures. OSHA 
invites interested persons to participate in this rulemaking by 
providing oral testimony and documentary evidence at the informal 
public hearings. In particular, OSHA invites interested persons who 
have knowledge of or experience with shipyard employment and the issues 
the proposed rule raises to participate in the hearings. OSHA also 
welcomes data and documentary evidence that will assist the Agency in 
developing a complete and accurate record.
    Pursuant to section 6(b)(3) of the Occupational Safety and Health 
Act of 1970 (OSH Act) (29 U.S.C. 655), members of the public have an 
opportunity for an informal public hearing on a proposed rule and the 
issues it raises at which they may provide oral testimony and evidence. 
An administrative law judge (ALJ) presides over the hearing and 
resolves procedural matters relating to the hearing.
    The legislative history of section 6 of the OSH Act, as well as 
OSHA's rules governing public hearings (29 CFR 1911.15), establish the 
purpose and procedures of informal public hearings. Although the 
presiding officer of such hearings is an ALJ and questioning of 
witnesses is allowed on crucial issues, the proceeding is largely 
informal and essentially legislative in purpose. Therefore, the hearing 
provides interested persons with an opportunity to make oral 
presentations in the absence of procedural restraints or rigid 
procedures that could impede or protract the rulemaking process. In 
addition, because the primary purpose of the hearing is to gather 
information and clarify the record, it is an informal administrative 
proceeding rather than an adjudicative one in which the technical rules 
of evidence apply. OSHA's rules governing public hearings and the pre-
hearing guidelines that the ALJ issues for the hearings will ensure 
fairness and due process for participants as well as facilitate the 
development of a clear, accurate, and complete record. Accordingly, 
application of these rules and guidelines will be such that questions 
of relevance, procedure, and participation generally will be resolved 
in favor development of the record.
    Conduct of the hearing will conform to OSHA's Rules of Procedure 
for Promulgating, Modifying, or Revoking Occupational Safety and Health 
Standards (29 CFR Part 1911). The rules also specify that the Assistant 
Secretary may, on reasonable notice, issue additional or alternative 
procedures to expedite the proceedings, to provide greater procedural 
protections to interested persons or to further any other good cause 
consistent with applicable law (29 CFR 1911.4). Although the ALJs who 
preside over the hearings make no decisions or recommendations on the 
merits of OSHA proposed rules, they do have the responsibility and 
authority necessary to ensure that the hearing progresses at a 
reasonable pace and in an orderly manner and to ensure that interested 
persons receive a full and fair hearing. To effectuate that, ALJs have 
the power to regulate the course of the proceedings; dispose of 
procedural requests, objections, and comparable matters; confine 
presentations to matters pertinent to the issues the proposed rule 
raises; use appropriate means to regulate the conduct of persons 
present at the hearing; question witnesses and permit others to do so; 
limit the time for such questioning; and leave the record open for a 
reasonable time after the hearing for the submission of additional 
data, evidence, comments and arguments (29 CFR 1911.16).
    At the close of the hearing the ALJ will establish a post-hearing 
comment period for interested persons who filed a timely notice of 
intention to appear at the hearing. During the first part of the post-
hearing period, those persons may submit additional data and 
information to OSHA. During the second part they may submit final 
briefs, arguments, and summations.
    Notice of intention to appear at the hearing. Interested persons 
who intend to participate in and provide oral testimony or documentary 
evidence at the hearing must file a written notice of intention to 
appear prior to the hearing. To testify or questions witnesses at 
either the Washington, DC, or Seattle, WA, hearing, interested persons 
must submit (transmit, send, postmark, deliver) their notice by July 
18, 2008. The notice must provide the following information:
     Name, address, and telephone number of each individual who 
will give oral testimony;
     Name of the establishment or organization each individual 
represents, if any;
     Occupational title and position of each individual 
testifying;
     Hearing location at which each individual wishes to appear 
and testify;
     Approximate amount of time required for each individual's 
testimony;
     A brief statement of the position each individual will 
take with respect to the issues identified in the proposed rule; and
     A brief summary of documentary evidence each individual 
intends to present.
    OSHA emphasizes that the hearings are open to the public; however, 
only individuals who file a notice of intention to appear may question 
witnesses and participate fully at the hearing. If time permits, and at 
the discretion of the ALJ, an individual who did not file a notice of 
intention to appear may be allowed to testify at the hearing, but for no 
more than 10 minutes.
    Hearing testimony and documentary evidence. Individuals who request 
more than 10 minutes to present their oral testimony at the hearing or 
who will submit documentary evidence at the hearing must submit 
(transmit, send, postmark, deliver) the full text of their testimony 
and all documentary evidence no later than August 8, 2008.
    The Agency will review each submission and determine if the 
information it contains warrants the amount of time the individual 
requested for the presentation. If OSHA believes the requested time is 
excessive, the Agency will allocate an appropriate amount of time for 
the presentation. The Agency also may limit to 10 minutes the 
presentation of any participant who fails to comply substantially with 
these procedural requirements, and may request that the participant 
return for questioning at a later time. Before the hearing, OSHA will 
notify participants of the time the Agency is allowing for their 
presentation and the reasons for its decision. In addition, before the 
hearing OSHA will provide the pre-hearing guidelines and hearing 
schedule to each participant.
    Certification of the hearing record and Agency final determination. 
Following the close of the hearing and the post-hearing comment 
periods, the ALJ will certify the record to the Assistant Secretary of 
Labor for Occupational Safety and Health. The record will consist of 
all of the written comments, oral testimony and documentary evidence 
received during the proceeding. The ALJ, however, will not make or 
recommend any decisions as to the content of the final standard. 
Following certification of the record, OSHA will review all the 
evidence received as part of the record and will issue the final rule 
based on the record as a whole.

Authority and Signature

    Edwin G. Foulke, Jr., Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational 
Safety and Health, directed the preparation of this notice under the 
authority granted by section 6(b) of the Occupational Safety and Health 
Act of 1970 (29 U.S.C. 655), Secretary of Labor's Order 5-2007 (72 FR 
31160), and 29 CFR part 1911.

    Signed at Washington, DC on this 23rd day of June, 2008.
Edwin G. Foulke, Jr.,
Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health.
[FR Doc. E8-14672 Filed 6-24-08; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 4510-26-P

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