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Detailed Information on the
Occupational Safety and Health Administration Assessment

Program Code 10000336
Program Title Occupational Safety and Health Administration
Department Name Department of Labor
Agency/Bureau Name Occupational Safety and Health Administration
Program Type(s) Regulatory-based Program
Assessment Year 2007
Assessment Rating Adequate
Assessment Section Scores
Section Score
Program Purpose & Design 100%
Strategic Planning 89%
Program Management 80%
Program Results/Accountability 26%
Program Funding Level
(in millions)
FY2007 $487
FY2008 $486
FY2009 $502

Ongoing Program Improvement Plans

Year Began Improvement Plan Status Comments
2007

Completing regulatory reforms identified in the 2005 Report to Congress on the Costs and Benefits of Federal Regulation by the end of FY 2008.

Action taken, but not completed OSHA is on track to publishing a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) or a proposed rule in 2008 for the following: Hazard Communication Training (final model training program and the document on preparation of material safety data sheets (MSDS)); Hazard Communication/MSDSs; and Guardrails Around Stacks of Steel and Walking and Working Surfaces (fixed ladders vs. stairs). OSHA anticipates publishing the Annual Training Requirements for Separate Standards proposed rule by November 2008.
2007

Conducting rigorous independent evaluations to examine the relative effectiveness and efficiency of programmatic approaches.

Action taken, but not completed OSHA is pursuing alternative approaches to establish a methodology for conducting studies of its various programmatic approaches??a methodology that would define commonalities for identifying inputs and outputs that lend themselves to valid comparison of relative efficiency and effectiveness.
2007

Constructing the OSHA Information System to improve data collection.

Action taken, but not completed The OSHA Information System, which will enhance data collection, data access, and information dissemination for the entire Agency, is scheduled for full deployment??by September 30, 2010.
2007

Develop OSHA Information System pilot. This is an intermediate milestone for the longer-term OSHA Information System improvement action, which will be completed in FY 2010.

Action taken, but not completed During this reporting period, the OSHA Information System Team identified and initiated coordination with a pool of approximately 175 users to test 20% of the system??s functionality scheduled to be rolled out in September of 2008.

Completed Program Improvement Plans

Year Began Improvement Plan Status Comments
2007

Developing efficiency and cost-effectiveness measures for a larger percentage of the agency's budget.

Completed OSHA adopted a new efficiency measure to track efficiency in its enforcement activities: Inspections per Compliance Safety and Health Officer (CSHO).

Program Performance Measures

Term Type  
Long-term/Annual Outcome

Measure: Days away from work, restricted and transferred (DART) per 100 workers.


Explanation:The measure assesses the number of days each year that workers are restricted, transferred or away from work due to a safety and health issue. The data come from the Survey of Occupational Injuries and Illnesses (SOII) at the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) and show the rate of injuries and illnesses involving days away from work, job restriction, or job transfer (DART). The SOII is a Federal/State program in which employers' reports are collected annually from about 176,000 private industry establishments. Summary information on the number of injuries and illnesses is copied by these employers directly from their recordkeeping logs to the survey questionnaire. Data for coal, metal, and nonmetal mining and for railroad activities are provided by the Mine Safety and Health Administration and the Federal Railroad Administration- OSHA does not cover these areas. The survey excludes work-related fatalities as well as nonfatal work injuries and illnesses to government workers, the self-employed, workers on farms with 10 or fewer employees, and private household workers. The baseline year, 2005, is the most recent year for which data were available when the measure was established. The 2007 and 2008 targets are a 3% and a 6% decline, respectively, from the 2005 baseline of 2.4.

Year Target Actual
2003 N/A 2.6
2004 N/A 2.5
2005 N/A 2.4
2006 N/A 2.3
2007 2.3 2.2
2008 2.3
2009 2.2
2010 2.1
2011 2.0
2012 2.0
2013 1.9
Long-term/Annual Outcome

Measure: Workplace fatalities per 100,000 workers for sectors covered by the OSH Act.


Explanation:The measure assesses a highly visible indicator of improvements in workplace safety and health by measuring the number of workplace fatalities per 100,000 workers each year for sectors covered by the OSH Act. The data come from the OSHA Integrated Management Information System (IMIS) and cover workplace fatality investigations in sectors covered by the OSH Act. The data do not include information on non-fatal injuries and illnesses. The current baseline year, 2006, was the most recent year for which data were available when the measure was established. The rate in 2007 (1.58) was 10% lower than the average of the rates from 2003 (the most recent year comparable data are available) to 2007; the targets represent a repetition for 2008 of 2007's record low rate, followed by an annual change of -1%.

Year Target Actual
2003 N/A 1.71
2004 N/A 1.78
2005 N/A 1.77
2006 Baseline 1.75
2007 1.73 1.58
2008 1.58
2009 1.57
2010 1.56
2011 1.55
2012 1.54
2013 1.53
Annual Efficiency

Measure: Inspections per Compliance Safety and Health Officer (CSHO).


Explanation:This efficiency measure captures the relationship between inspections and human resources devoted to this activity- measuring the annual level of productivity of the Compliance Safety and Health Officers in conducting safety, health and whistleblower inspections. Data are derived from internal OSHA information systems, and reports to OPM.

Year Target Actual
2007 Baseline 37.51
2008 37.51
2009 37.81
2010 38.0

Questions/Answers (Detailed Assessment)

Section 1 - Program Purpose & Design
Number Question Answer Score
1.1

Is the program purpose clear?

Explanation: The authorizing statute, the Occupational Safety and Health (OSH) Act clearly defines OSHA's purpose: to assure, so far as possible, every working man and woman in the nation safe and healthful working conditions.

Evidence: The Occupational Safety and Health Act (The Act: 29 U.S.C. 651 et seq.).

YES 20%
1.2

Does the program address a specific and existing problem, interest, or need?

Explanation: OSHA's mission is to prevent occupational injuries, illnesses, and fatalities. Despite substantial reductions in the number and rate of job-related deaths, injuries and illnesses in the 35 years since OSHA was established, occupational fatalities, injuries and illnesses remain a problem In 2005 (the latest year for which national data are available), there were 4.2 million non-fatal occupational injuries and illnesses (4.6 cases per 100 full-time workers) and 5,214 occupational fatalities. (Note: these data represent the private industry workforce as a whole, including sectors--such as mining and the self-employed--over which OSHA does not have jurisdiction.)

Evidence: 2005 Bureau of Labor Statistics Survey of Occupational Injuries and Illnesses and Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries.

YES 20%
1.3

Is the program designed so that it is not redundant or duplicative of any other Federal, state, local or private effort?

Explanation: OSHA's mission overlaps with, but OSHA does not duplicate, the work of states and other federal agencies (e.g., the Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA), Department of Transportation, and the Environmental Protection Agency). Section 4(b)(1) of the OSH Act specifically bars OSHA enforcement in areas regulated by other federal agencies. In areas where more than one Agency's regulatory scheme applies, OSHA enters into memoranda of understanding (MOU) to clarify each Agency's respective authorities. If a situation arises about jurisdiction where no previous MOU had been negotiated, OSHA works with the other entities on an ad hoc basis to resolve coverage responsibility. OSHA provides up to 50 percent federal funding to states to operate OSHA-approved State Plans under Section 23(g) of the OSH Act. There are currently 26 OSHA-approved State Plans in effect. OSHA approves, oversees, and partially funds the execution of these state programs, but delegates the day-to-day authority to enforce OSHA standards and develop effective state standards to these states and territories. Section 18(e) of the Act directs federal OSHA to relinquish its standards and enforcement authority over issues covered by an approved State-plan state. In State-Plan states that have not yet achieved final approval, there is concurrent federal and state authority and OSHA enters into Operational Status Agreements that specify the respective jurisdiction of the state and federal OSHA programs. Private partners raise awareness of occupational injuries, illnesses, and fatalities, but do not have the same authority to enforce regulations and assess penalties.

Evidence: Section 4(b)(1) of the OSH Act states that "[n]othing in the Act shall apply to working conditions of employees with respect to which other Federal agencies??exercise statutory authority to prescribe or enforce standards or regulations affecting occupational safety or health." Examples of agencies with which OSHA has memoranda of understanding are the U.S. Coast Guard, the Mine Safety and Health Administration, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission and the Department of Energy. Interagency Agreement Between the Mine Safety and Health Administration U.S. Department of Labor and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration U.S. Department of Labor; Memorandum of Understanding Between the United States Coast Guard, the Department of Transportation and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, the Department of Labor Concerning Occupational Safety and Health on Artificial Islands, Installations and Other Devices on the Outer Continental Shelf on the United States; Memorandum of Understanding Between the United States Coast Guard U.S. Department of Transportation and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration U.S. Department Of Labor Concerning Their Authority to Prescribe and Enforce Standards or Regulations Affecting the Occupational Safety and Health of Seamen Aboard Vessels Inspected And Certificated By the Coast Guard; Memorandum of Understanding Between the U.S. Department of Labor and the U.S. Department of Energy.

YES 20%
1.4

Is the program design free of major flaws that would limit the program's effectiveness or efficiency?

Explanation: There is no evidence that there are major flaws in the program that would limit its effectiveness or that an alternative approach would be preferable. OSHA relies on a mix of programs and intervention strategies to improve workplace safety and health, including enforcement, standards development, outreach, training, education, technical assistance, and voluntary cooperative programs. The Agency relies on compliance assistance to reach significantly more employers than it could through enforcement alone. While several recent GAO reports have pointed to the need for operational improvements in OSHA, they did not identify major flaws in program design.

Evidence: There have been a number of studies on the effectiveness of various OSHA programs and interventions but these studies do not suggest that a major difference in approach or mechanisms would be more effective or efficient in fulfilling OSHA's mission. These studies include: "Evaluation of OSHA's Impact on Workplace Injuries and Illnesses in Manufacturing Using Establishment-Specific Targeting of Interventions," Eastern Research Group, July 2004; "Evaluation of the Voluntary Protection Program Findings Report," The Gallup Organization, September 2005; "Evaluation of OSHA Voluntary Guidelines: Recommendations for Future Guidelines Development and Promotion Based on an Analysis of Three Existing Guidelines," Eastern Research Group, June 2006; "The Relative Effectiveness of Different Types of Citation Dispositions for OSHA Inspections: Informal, Formal, and Corporate-Wide Settlement Agreements and Decisions by Administrative Law Judges and Review Commissioners of the Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission," July 2006; "OSHA's Oversight of It's Civil Penalty Determination and Violation Abatement Processes Has Limitations," GAO-04-920, August 13, 2004; "OSHA Credits Its Complaint System with Conserving Agency Resources, but the System Still Warrants Improvement," GAO-04-658, June 18, 2004; "OSHA Could Improve Federal Agencies' Safety Programs with a More Strategic Approach to Its Oversight," GAO-06-379, April 21, 2006.

YES 20%
1.5

Is the program design effectively targeted so that resources will address the program's purpose directly and will reach intended beneficiaries?

Explanation: Because there are over 7 million workplaces under its jurisdiction, OSHA has the capacity to inspect only one in every 167 workplaces each year. It therefore also relies on other approaches??such as voluntary industry partnerships and alliances, compliance assistance, and delegation of enforcement authority to States with effective State plans??to achieve its goals. OSHA also uses data to direct its enforcement resources to meet the most pressing needs. Under the Site Specific Targeting System (SST), OSHA targets its programmed inspections to establishments that have substantially higher-than-average injury and illness rates, as identified through the OSHA Data Initiative (ODI). The results of OSHA's use of the ODI and SST to direct its enforcement efforts have been positive, as measured by the number and seriousness of the hazards identified by these inspections, the number of employees removed from exposure to these hazards, and the abatement of hazards achieved as a result of these inspections. An independent evaluation of the SST showed positive results in reducing injury and illness rates. OSHA has a system in place to prioritize safety and health complaints according to their gravity (and has a policy of doing on-site inspections of complaints that could result in a fatality or serious injury), which helps to target enforcement resources; however, in 2004 GAO noted a need to improve the consistency of how the complaint policy was applied by OSHA's area offices. Both enforcement and compliance assistance programs and activities are supported by safety and health data and Agency targeting is conducted to reach industries, employers, employees and other groups that are most vulnerable to injury on the job. OSHA generally does not subsidize activities that would have otherwise taken place without Federal intervention.

Evidence: http://www.osha.gov/pls/oshaweb/owadisp.show_document?p_table=DIRECTIVES&p_id=3350 "Evaluation of OSHA's Impact on Workplace Injuries and Illnesses in Manufacturing Using Establishment-Specific Targeting of Interventions," Eastern Research Group, July 2004. GAO-04-658, "OSHA's Complaint Response Policies: OSHA Credits its Complaint System with Conserving Agency Resources, but the System Still Warrants Improvement."

YES 20%
Section 1 - Program Purpose & Design Score 100%
Section 2 - Strategic Planning
Number Question Answer Score
2.1

Does the program have a limited number of specific long-term performance measures that focus on outcomes and meaningfully reflect the purpose of the program?

Explanation: OSHA has created two new long-term performance measures (1 and 2 under the performance measures section) in conjunction with the 2007 PART evaluation, which track slightly different illness, injury, and fatality data than the previous measures (3 and 4 under the performance measures section). These measures are outcome-oriented and reflect key components of OSHA's mission. They are: (1) to reduce the rate of workplace injuries and illnesses from the FY 2005 baseline; and (2) to reduce the rate of workplace fatalities from the FY 2006 baseline. Beginning in 2007 the workplace injury and illness rate will be measured using the DART (days away from work, restricted work activity, and/or job transfer) rate rather than the previous DAFW (Days Away From Work) rate. The DART rate includes the more severe DAFW injuries as well as injuries involving restricted work activity and/or job transfer. The rate of workplace fatalities will still be measured by the rate of OSHA-investigated deaths among workers covered by the OSH Act, but beginning in 2007 will be calculated several months after the conclusion of the performance period, allowing for a more complete count of fatalities. These performance measures will be analyzed both on a long-term basis (over the five years of the Plan) and on an annual basis (as measured through the Agency's annual operating plan and through the Department's Annual Performance and Accountability Report).

Evidence: Department of Labor FY 2006 - 2011 Strategic Plan; FY 2007 OSHA Operating Plan. Note: The DART rate, which includes restricted work activity or job transfer, is a more comprehensive measure of injuries and illnesses which affect employees' work than the days away from work (DAFW) rate used in the FY 2003 - 2008 strategic plan.

YES 11%
2.2

Does the program have ambitious targets and timeframes for its long-term measures?

Explanation: Over the 5-year span covered by the Department's FY 2006 to 2011 Strategic Plan, OSHA's goals are to: (1) reduce the rate of workplace injuries and illnesses from the FY 2005 baseline by 15%; and (2) reduce the rate of workplace fatalities from the FY 2006 baseline by 5%. These are both challenging and meaningful quantifiable targets because, if reached, they will mean that fatality, injury and illness rates have reached their lowest levels ever, as measured by reliable national statistics from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) and OSHA.

Evidence: Department of Labor FY 2006 - 2011 Strategic Plan; BLS Survey of Occupational Injuries and Illnesses; BLS Current Employment Statistics program; OSHA Integrated Management Information System.

YES 11%
2.3

Does the program have a limited number of specific annual performance measures that can demonstrate progress toward achieving the program's long-term goals?

Explanation: OSHA's annual performance measures are discrete, quantifiable, measurable and outcome-based and are designed specifically to reflect the Agency's progress in achieving its long-term goals. The Agency's annual measures become more ambitious each year over the span of the FY 2006 -2011 Strategic Plan. For example, the FY 2007 annual performance measures are to reduce the rate of workplace injuries and illnesses from the FY 2005 baseline by 3%, and to reduce the rate of workplace fatalities from the FY 2006 baseline rate by 1%. The rate of workplace injuries and illnesses is measured by the DART rate, which is the rate of injuries and illnesses involving days away from work, or days of restricted work activity or job transfer, or both. The rate of workplace fatalities is measured by the rate of OSHA-investigated deaths among workers covered by the OSH Act. As discussed in question 3.4, the program does not have adequate efficiency measures.

Evidence: Department of Labor FY 2006 - 2011 Strategic Plan; FY 2007 OSHA Operating Plan.

YES 11%
2.4

Does the program have baselines and ambitious targets for its annual measures?

Explanation: OSHA's annual performance measures represent sustained and ambitious improvement over established baselines and identify targets that become more ambitious each year over the span of the FY 2006 -2011 Strategic Plan period. The FY 2007 annual performance measures are to (1) reduce the rate of workplace injuries and illnesses by 3% from the FY 2005 baseline; and to (2) reduce the rate of workplace fatalities from the FY 2006 baseline by 1%. Cumulatively, success in achieving OSHA's annual goals would mean that fatality and injury and illness rates would reach their lowest levels using common measures. The FY 2011 target of 2.0 injuries/illnesses involving days away from work, job restriction or job transfer (DART) per 100 workers would represent a 29% decline over 10 years from the roughly-comparable lost workdays injuries and illnesses rate of 2.8 cases per 100 workers in 2001. OSHA's FY 2011 goal of decreasing the workplace fatality of workers to 1.66 per 100,000 workers for sectors covered by the OSH Act is even more ambitious than it seems. The data used to measure the fatality goal results will be increasingly complete due to improvements in OSHA data collection procedures, resulting in increases in the fatality rate independent of changes in actual workplace hazardousness. That is, to meet this goal, OSHA will not only have to have a lower a number of fatalities per worker, but will also have to lower it enough to counteract the effect of more complete counting of deaths.

Evidence: Department of Labor FY 2006 - 2011 Strategic Plan; BLS Survey of Occupational Injuries and Illnesses; BLS Current Employment Statistics program; OSHA Integrated Management Information System. Note: The current methodology for the injury/illness measure is different from that in the prior plan, because it uses the DART rate instead of the DAFW (Days Away From Work) rate. The DART includes restricted work activity and job transfer cases, and is a more complete measure of occupational injuries and illnesses than the DAFW rate.

YES 11%
2.5

Do all partners (including grantees, sub-grantees, contractors, cost-sharing partners, and other government partners) commit to and work toward the annual and/or long-term goals of the program?

Explanation: State-Plan States are required to operate programs that are at least as effective as the Federal OSHA program, and must develop five-year Strategic Plans and Annual Performance Plans, which include goals for the reduction of workplace injuries, illnesses and fatalities. OSHA monitors and evaluates the State Plans through regular evaluation reports and quarterly meetings. When OSHA's monitoring reveals deficiencies in a State's occupational safety and health program, OSHA recommends that the State take appropriate corrective action including, in some cases, revisions to state laws and regulations. As appropriate, OSHA provides training or other assistance to the State. In the rare cases where the State does not agree to take such actions, OSHA may reinstate federal enforcement. States also receive funding for cooperative agreements under Section 21(d) or Section 23(g) of the Act to provide safety and health assistance to small businesses to identify and correct hazards and develop effective safety and health management systems. Projects in federal states support federal OSHA's strategic activities; projects in State Plan states support the States' strategic plans. OSHA monitors and evaluates State Consultation activities while the allocation of funds utilizes a funding formula that considers the Project's past performance in meeting goals. OSHA also funds nonprofit organizations to conduct safety and health training and education programs for employers and employees covered by the Act. OSHA monitors grantee performance to ensure that the work of grantees supports the Agency's strategic goals. Additionally, the Agency operates a variety of voluntary cooperative programs to provide opportunities for employers, employees and other groups to collaborate and formally commit to work toward the Agency's strategic goal of reducing workplace injuries, illnesses and fatalities. For example, the Partnership program includes signed agreements with identified goals to reduce injuries, illnesses and fatalities; Voluntary Protection Programs (VPP) sites are recognized for their exemplary safety and health performance and also serve as models and mentors for other sites seeking to improve their safety and health performance. Each partnership is reviewed annually, and each VPP site submits an annual self-assessment, in addition to providing data for periodic reassessments that are conducted by OSHA. Annual reports include information demonstrating improvements in the rate of workplace injuries and illnesses, the adoption of best practices in safety and health, and other accomplishments in workplace safety and health achieved by participants. Alliance partners work with OSHA to address a variety of safety and health issues, which are focused on strategic areas of emphasis, and each Alliance is reviewed annually. OSHA conducts monitoring and evaluations of participants to ensure that all requirements of the cooperative agreements are fulfilled. At a minimum, annual and periodic assessments are made to evaluate participants' commitment to OSHA's goal of reducing workplace injuries, illnesses and fatalities. If a participant fails to meet the goals of the agreement, procedures are in place to promptly terminate the effort.

Evidence: Evidence: The Occupational Safety and Health Act (The Act: 29 U.S.C. 651 et seq.); CSP 03-01-002 - TED 8.4 - Voluntary Protection Programs (VPP): Policies and Procedures Manual; CSP 03-02-002 - OSHA Strategic Partnership Program for Worker Safety and Health Directive; CSP 04-01-001 - OSHA Alliance Program Directive; TED 03-00-001 - OSHA Discretionary Grant Programs Directive.

YES 11%
2.6

Are independent evaluations of sufficient scope and quality conducted on a regular basis or as needed to support program improvements and evaluate effectiveness and relevance to the problem, interest, or need?

Explanation: DOL- and OSHA-sponsored studies are conducted on a regular basis, and are cumulatively of sufficient scope, although as discussed below their rigor could be improved. Examples include independent evaluations of OSHA's site-specific inspection targeting program (2004), Voluntary Protection Programs (2005), voluntary guidelines (2006), and methods of resolving citations (2006). These program evaluations cover major elements of OSHA's programs, including enforcement interventions, cooperative programs, compliance assistance and review of enforcement actions. OSHA reviews evaluation proposals to ensure the relevance, quality and usefulness of evaluation data and findings. Submissions must address criteria for quality of design and methodological validity and are evaluated by DOL program and technical staff. Criteria include (1) comprehensive coverage of the subject program; (2) application of sound analytical methods; and (3) targeting of recommendations for enhancing effectiveness. In selecting topics for evaluation, OSHA places priority on responding to PART and other oversight findings and recommendations, and obtaining timely and relevant information to identify opportunities for program improvements. For example, the site-specific targeting study was designed to obtain more current information on the effectiveness of OSHA inspections and the VPP study was a follow-up action to previous PART and GAO findings. GAO has also done numerous reviews of OSHA in recent years. As discussed in the response to 4.5, these and other independent evaluations have identified questions about program effectiveness that warrant further evaluation. The comprehensiveness of the employed studies' methodology could be improved. Although a variety of non-OSHA related variables (e.g. age, size, and location of business) may affect the existence of workplace illness, injuries, and fatalities, none of the studies conducted accounted for these variables. The collection of such information may also inform OSHA as to the relative effectiveness of various approaches for different types of workplaces.

Evidence: "Evaluation of OSHA's Impact on Workplace Injuries and Illnesses in Manufacturing Using Establishment-Specific Targeting of Interventions," Eastern Research Group, July 2004; "Evaluation of the Voluntary Protection Program Findings Report," The Gallup Organization, September 2005; "Evaluation of OSHA Voluntary Guidelines: Recommendations for Future Guidelines Development and Promotion Based on an Analysis of Three Existing Guidelines," Eastern Research Group, June 2006; "The Relative Effectiveness of Different Types of Citation Dispositions for OSHA Inspections: Informal, Formal, and Corporate-Wide Settlement Agreements and Decisions by Administrative Law Judges and Review Commissioners of the Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission," July 2006.

YES 11%
2.7

Are Budget requests explicitly tied to accomplishment of the annual and long-term performance goals, and are the resource needs presented in a complete and transparent manner in the program's budget?

Explanation: OSHA's links resources to its performance goals (and clearly presents this linkage in its Congressional Budget Justifications), but does not make clear the impact of funding, policy, or legislative decisions on expected performance. It is not apparent, for example, how a change in resources for one of OSHA's programs would affect its outputs or outcomes. In addition, the General Accounting Office has noted a need for more comprehensive and comparable data on the performance of voluntary compliance programs, to assist OSHA in determining how best to allocate its resources.

Evidence: FY 2008 Congressional Budget Justification; Department of Labor FY 2006-2011 Strategic Plan; FY 2007 OSHA Operating Plan. "OSHA's Voluntary Compliance Strategies Show Promising Results, but Should be Fully Evaluated Before they are Expanded," GAO-04-378, March 2004.

NO 0%
2.8

Has the program taken meaningful steps to correct its strategic planning deficiencies?

Explanation: OSHA has participated in the Department-wide efforts to develop annual performance-based budgets for the last several years. In addition, OSHA has contributed to the Department's FY 2006 - 2011 Strategic Plan through two outcome-based performance measures. The Agency tracks these measures annually through its annual operating plan and reports on these measures annually through the Department's Annual Performance and Accountability Report. The Agency's annual operating plan requires quarterly reporting on many mission-critical initiatives designed to reduce injuries, illnesses and fatalities by highlighting significant activities completed by both the Agency's field and national offices in six industries and 12 areas of emphasis. The operating plan system identifies how each activity is progressing, percent complete and what is not on track, and the Assistant Secretary monitors these reports and acts accordingly when necessary. OSHA has taken some steps to address findings of DOL and GAO studies. For example, GAO noted that OSHA was not ensuring field audits were being conducted or using audit results to ensure consistency. In response, OSHA established a new system for auditing field offices on a regular basis to ensure that agency staff follow established policies and procedures. In response to a GAO finding that more comprehensive and comparable data is needed on its voluntary protection programs, OSHA is in the process of identifying cost-effective methods of collecting more complete and sufficient data on voluntary programs through development of the new OSHA Information System (OIS), expected to be completed in 2009.

Evidence: President's Fiscal Year Budgets for FY 2005 - 2008; Department of Labor FY 2006 - 2011 Strategic Plan; FY 2007 OSHA Operating Plan for FY 2005 - 2008; Department of Labor Annual Performance and Accountability Report for FY 2005 - 2006. "OSHA's Oversight of Its Civil Penalty Determination and Violation Abatement Processes Has Limitations," GAO-04-920, August 13, 2004. "OSHA's Voluntary Compliance Strategies Show Promising Results, but Should be Fully Evaluated Before they are Expanded," GAO-04-378, March 2004.

YES 11%
2.RG1

Are all regulations issued by the program/agency necessary to meet the stated goals of the program, and do all regulations clearly indicate how the rules contribute to achievement of the goals?

Explanation: Regulations issued by OSHA are designed to achieve two broad goals. First, OSHA develops standards that are reasonably necessary and appropriate to reduce occupational safety and health risks to employees. Section 3(8) of the OSHA Act requires that standards be reasonably necessary and appropriate. As interpreted by the courts, standards are reasonably necessary and appropriate if: 1) they address a significant risk and materially reduce that risk; 2) are technologically and economically feasible; 3) are cost effective in the sense of reducing the risk in the most cost effective way; and 4) if different from a national consensus standard, better effectuate the Act's objectives than the consensus standard. In addition, health standards must reduce significant risk, assuming a lifetime of exposure, to the extent feasible. OSHA relies on information from the rule making record to determine whether a standard is reasonably necessary and appropriate, and addresses each of the above topics in its preambles. Second, OSHA updates existing standards to make them more consistent with the most recent applicable consensus standards, eliminate obsolete provisions, reduce the burden on the regulated community, simplify them, and improve consistency across OSHA standards. In its preambles to proposed and final rules OSHA clearly explains the goals addressed by the rulemaking action and how the rule will contribute to OSHA's strategic goals; and presents scientific, statistical, and economic analyses to meet criteria dictated by the Act, court decisions, congressional mandates, OMB guidelines, executive orders, and other applicable policy documents. Standards issued to reduce occupational risks include extensive analyses of the baseline risks to employees and the expected reduction in risks associated with compliance with the new or revised standard, detailed assessments of technological and economic feasibility, and in many cases peer reviews of these analyses. In addition, newly issued OSHA standards include a quantitative analysis of the benefits in terms of reduced fatalities, injuries, and illnesses anticipated as a result of promulgating the standard. Several current regulatory projects identified on the Agency's Regulatory Agenda whose promulgation will also contribute to the achievement of the Department's Strategic Plan goals include standards on Walking and Working Surfaces (NPRM under development), Working Conditions in Shipyards (NPRM is currently in the OSHA and Department review processes), Exposure to Crystalline Silica (NPRM under development), and Exposure to Beryllium (NPRM under development).

Evidence: OSHA Standards Improvement Project Phase II, 70 FR 1111; Subpart S, Electrical Installations, 72 FR 7135; Fire Protection in Shipyard Employment, 69 FR 55667; Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking for SIPS III, 71 FR 76623; Hexavalent Chromium, 71 FR 10100; Semi-Annual Regulatory Agenda, 71 FR 73540.

YES 11%
Section 2 - Strategic Planning Score 89%
Section 3 - Program Management
Number Question Answer Score
3.1

Does the agency regularly collect timely and credible performance information, including information from key program partners, and use it to manage the program and improve performance?

Explanation: OSHA maintains and tracks data in the Integrated Management Information System (IMIS) to identify safety and health trends and monitor Agency workload, and to use employer-reported data to target enforcement and compliance assistance efforts. This system is currently in the process of being upgraded and updated as the Agency builds a more robust Occupational Safety and Health Information System (OIS) to replace the IMIS. OIS will enhance program efficiency by allowing the Agency to more strategically manage and allocate resources to make the greatest impact on workplace safety and health. Data for OSHA cooperative programs is collected primarily from participants through Annual Evaluation Reports, which the Agency then uses to enhance the program or, if necessary, to revise it. Additionally, all cooperative program agreements have rigorous monitoring requirements to ensure that participants are actively meeting or exceeding the goals of the agreement. State Plans are required to develop 5-year Strategic Plans and annual performance indicators that include goals for the reduction of workplace injuries, illnesses and fatalities. OSHA monitors and evaluates the State Plans through regular evaluation reports and quarterly meetings. State Plans report program data into IMIS. Annual evaluations and annual self-evaluations are required for all Consultation Projects and OSHA regularly monitors and evaluates all State Consultation activities. Specific to the measures, for injury/illness data, while the Bureau of Labor Statistics provides injury/illness data with a ten-month time lag (e.g., October 2007 for CY 2006), these are the most complete available data; in addition, because OSHA uses both single-year data and longer-term trends, to manage its programs, that time lag's real effect is mitigated. OSHA monitors fatality data monthly to make sure that they are up to date and can develop special local programs to address new problems if they arise. Finally, for the Agency's Voluntary Protection Programs (VPP), OSHA collects data annually and has rigorous monitoring requirements to ensure participants meet the goals of the agreement. As noted previously, the General Accounting Office has noted a need for more comprehensive and comparable data on the performance of voluntary compliance programs to enable OSHA to ascertain their relative effectiveness and allocate resources accordingly.

Evidence: OSHA responded to increasing construction deaths in Florida by developing an enforcement and outreach program, and the number of fatalities has decreased since implementation. OSHA also develops "special emphasis programs" (SEPs) to respond to emerging needs. For example, OSHA's southeast regional office has initiated a SEP to reduce the number of construction-industry falls, which accounted for a large share of that area's fatalities in the recent past. Additionally, the New England region has implemented a region-wide emphasis program to address the sharp increase in crushing deaths caused by the collapse of multi-ton slabs of marble used to create kitchen counter tops.

YES 10%
3.2

Are Federal managers and program partners (including grantees, sub-grantees, contractors, cost-sharing partners, and other government partners) held accountable for cost, schedule and performance results?

Explanation: OSHA SES managers' performance appraisals are tied to OSHA and DOL performance goals. Appraisals review managers' ability to operate within budget, to operate on schedule and to achieve desired results. All agency employees are also held accountable through performance appraisals for the completion of specific tasks that link to the activities outlined in the Agency's Annual Operating Plan, which establishes goals and strategies for the reduction of injuries, illnesses and fatalities. Performance of cooperative program participants is monitored closely to ensure requirements of the agreement are met. At a minimum, annual and periodic assessments are made to evaluate participants' commitment towards OSHA's goal of reducing workplace injuries, illnesses and fatalities. If a participant fails to meet established goals of the agreement, procedures are in place to take corrective action or to terminate the agreement. OSHA issues formal instructions annually for State Plan states and Consultation Program partners to follow in submitting their applications for federal financial assistance. These instructions provide guidance on expected performance along with conditions and restrictions that must be met. State-Plan States are required to operate programs that are at least as effective as the Federal OSHA program, and must develop five-year Strategic Plans and Annual Performance Plans, which include goals for the reduction of workplace injuries, illnesses and fatalities. OSHA monitors and evaluates the State Plans through regular evaluation reports and quarterly meetings. When OSHA's monitoring reveals deficiencies in a State's occupational safety and health program, OSHA recommends that the State take appropriate corrective action including, in some cases, revisions to state laws and regulations. As appropriate, OSHA provides training or other assistance to the State. In the rare cases where the State does not agree to take such actions, OSHA may reinstate federal enforcement. Consultation projects in states support OSHA's strategic goals, while Consultation Projects in State Plan states support the states' Strategic Plan. OSHA closely monitors the requirements of Consultation program activities on a quarterly and annual basis, and the Agency uses a formula for allocating OSHA Consultation funds that considers past performance. Under the Susan Harwood Grants Program, OSHA monitors and oversees the day-to-day operations of individual grants and to ensure grantees support Agency strategic goals. Individual employers are held accountable for outcomes through inspections, and where applicable, fines.

Evidence: FY 2006-2011 US DOL Strategic Plan; Integrated Management Information System (IMIS); FY 2008 Congressional Budget Justification; Directive No. 07-41, Federal On-Site Consultation Cooperative Agreement Application for FY 2008; Directive No. 07-02, FY 2008 Instructions for 1) Integrated 23(g) State Plan Grants and 21(d) On-Site Consultation Cooperative Agreements, 2) 23(g) Public Employee Only State Plan Grants and 3) 23(g) State Plan Grants without 21(d) funding.

YES 10%
3.3

Are funds (Federal and partners') obligated in a timely manner, spent for the intended purpose and accurately reported?

Explanation: All programs obligate and spend funds for the intended purpose in a timely manner. Each National Office Directorate and Region is provided an operating budget reflecting all object class authorities. Obligations and expenditures are reviewed and discussed on a regular basis, but no less than quarterly, with the appropriate administrative staff and executives in the respective organizations by the Agency budget staff and responsible national office executives, to ensure proper utilization and reporting of funds within and against the Agency's OMB-approved apportionment spending plan. OSHA uses DOL accounting reports from DOLAR$ to produce monthly financial reports and reviews. Agency managers and budget staff use these documents to monitor obligations and spending. For the past five years, OSHA has obligated over 99% of its budget authority by the end of the fiscal year. The Agency reviews obligations and outlays monthly to ensure that funds are obligated in a timely manner and spent for the intended purpose. OSHA is currently in compliance with all major financial management acts, including but not limited to the Federal Managers' Financial Integrity Act and the Federal Financial Management Improvement Act. OSHA provides base grant planning targets to grantees before the beginning of each year. Spending authority and operating budgets are provided following OMB's apportionment of appropriations. Grantees submit quarterly and closeout financial status reports for obligations and expenditures. Obligations and expenditures are monitored by federal staff. Grantee financial activity for all grant programs is monitored through quarterly reports submitted by the grantee. These reports include Financial Status Reports and Federal Cash Transactions Reports. Financial closeout reports are also submitted at the end of the grant period. Grantee financial activity is reported through the Department of Health and Human Services - Payment Management System, which interfaces to DOL's accounting system. The Payment Management System Synchronization report is reviewed monthly to assess financial activity and identify any issues with financial performance. On-site financial monitoring visits are conducted in accordance with the OSHA directive, Financial and Administrative Monitoring of OSHA Grants and Cooperative Agreements. Financial documents and activities are also reviewed in accordance with OSHA's Grants Management Manual.

Evidence: 2002-2007 Budget Appendix, Annual Treasury Report; Reports on Budgetary Execution and Budgetary Resources (SF-133).

YES 10%
3.4

Does the program have procedures (e.g. competitive sourcing/cost comparisons, IT improvements, appropriate incentives) to measure and achieve efficiencies and cost effectiveness in program execution?

Explanation: As noted in past PART improvement plans, OSHA's efficiency measures (largely focused on whistleblower inspections) do not adequately capture the bulk of OSHA's work or resources, and therefore do not yield useful information on the OSHA's overall efficiency. The agency has, however, taken other actions to improve efficiency. OSHA is currently undertaking a major IT improvement by redesigning its current Integrated Management Information System (IMIS) with the development of a revised OSHA Information System (OIS). These enhancements will automate the generation of case-processing documents and allow OSHA to identify industries and workplaces with the most serious hazards and more effectively target its resources to worksites needing interventions. Because the design and development of OIS is not a quick-turnaround project, OSHA field offices are developing and using local strategies as well as working with the national office to develop and test additional process improvements. Further, OSHA has completed five OSHA-wide competitions comprised of 138 FTE and generating an estimated cost savings of $17 million. OSHA is currently engaged in three additional departmental competitions comprised of an additional 82 FTE, and the Agency has identified over 40% of its FTE as commercial on its 2005 and 2006 FAIR Act Inventories. OSHA reviews its inventory each year in order to identify functions that might be appropriate for competition.

Evidence: FY 2008 Congressional Budget Submission; DOL 2005 and 2006 Commercial Activities and Inherently Governmental FAIR Act inventories, OSHA Information System Project Charter.

NO 0%
3.5

Does the program collaborate and coordinate effectively with related programs?

Explanation: OSHA collaborates with the states and monitors and evaluates State Plans through regular evaluation reports and annual self-evaluation reports submitted for Agency review. OSHA meets three times a year with the Occupational Safety and Health State Plan Association (OSHSPA), which has representatives from all 26 states operating State Plans, and meets an additional 3 times a year with the OSHSPA Board of Directors to discuss federal and state initiatives and share information. State Plan representatives serve on joint task forces with OSHA to develop and coordinate programs and activities addressing issues such as newly identified hazards, and compliance initiatives and performance measurement. OSHA holds regular teleconferences with State Plan representatives on issues of concern, including emergency preparedness and response, information technology and compliance assistance. OSHA coordinates appropriate State Plans' participation as appropriate in emergency response exercises conducted in coordination with the Department of Homeland Security. Federal OSHA and State Programs share publications and training materials and provide access to these materials on both Federal and State Plan websites. Effective state and federal collaboration is conducted to ensure all efforts are complementary and resources are managed and allocated to most efficiently achieve OSHA's goals of reducing workplace injuries, illnesses and fatalities. OSHA cooperative and enforcement programs are also designed to prevent duplicative Agency activity. Eligible cooperative program participants who demonstrate a strong commitment to workplace safety and health may receive less enforcement oversight, which allows OSHA to direct enforcement resources where they are needed most. OSHA collaborates and coordinates regularly and on an ad hoc basis with related federal programs. For example, OSHA and NIOSH have established an Issues Exchange Group (IEG) which meets periodically to collaborate on actions addressing a variety of workplace safety and health issues. Work groups from each agency are assigned action items resulting from IEG discussions on issues such as the National Occupational Research Agenda, Pandemic Flu Response, and Nanotechnology. Interagency collaboration under IEG results in a variety of products such as response protocols, guidelines, and best practices. As discussed in the response to question 1.3, OSHA also has entered into Memoranda of Understanding (MOU) with affected federal agencies to both coordinate on respective jurisdictional authority and to establish collaborative efforts.

Evidence: Sections 21(d) of the Act; Examples of documents produced from collaborative efforts between OSHA and States can be found at OSHA website: http://www.osha.gov/dcsp/osp/innovations.html#emergency http://www.osha.gov/dcsp/osp/trainmat.html The Occupational Safety and Health Act (The Act: 29 U.S.C. 651 et seq.); IEG agenda for March 26, 2007 meeting.

YES 10%
3.6

Does the program use strong financial management practices?

Explanation: Along with the rest of the Department of Labor, OSHA has received ten consecutive, clean audit opinions from the OIG's annual Consolidated Financial Statement Audit. In FY06, OSHA's financial processes had no significant internal control weaknesses. Agency efforts to achieve clean audit opinions have ensured that OSHA follows DOL's financial management guidelines for committing, obligating, reprogramming and reconciling appropriated funds, ensuring that financial information is both accurate and timely. The main DOL financial management systems used by OSHA meet statutory requirements and Agency officials have a system of controls and accountability to ensure that improper payments are not made. At each step in the process, the propriety of the payment is reviewed. OSHA trains individuals to ensure that they understand their roles and responsibilities for invoice review and for carrying out the financial aspects of program objectives. Each National Office Directorate and regional office is provided an operating budget and spending is reviewed at least on a quarterly basis. OSHA uses DOL accounting reports to produce monthly financial reports. Agency budget staff and program managers monitor spending throughout the year. The capability to produce daily financial reports on obligations and expenditures exists and is utilized as required. Grantee financial activity for all grant programs is monitored through quarterly reports submitted by the grantee. These reports include Financial Status Reports and Federal Cash Transactions Reports. Financial closeout reports are also submitted at the end of the grant period. Grantee financial activity is reported through the Department of Health and Human Services - Payment Management System, which interfaces to DOL's accounting system. The Payment Management System Synchronization report is reviewed monthly to assess financial activity and identify any issues with financial performance. On-site financial monitoring visits are conducted in accordance with the OSHA directive on Financial and Administrative Monitoring of OSHA Grants and Cooperative Agreements. Financial documents and activities are also reviewed in accordance with OSHA's Grants Management Manual. On a quarterly basis, OSHA management reviews regional and national office performance in transmitting delinquent accounts to Treasury and the overall status of delinquent accounts. This is done as part of the process of preparing and submitting the required Treasury Report on Receivables. The data is also reviewed by the DOL CFO and Treasury Financial Management Service personnel. OSHA personnel conduct detailed reconciliations monthly to ensure that penalty payments, as reflected in the agency inspection management system, are properly received and recorded by the Treasury as well as reflected in the Department of Labor financial system (DOLAR$).

Evidence: DOL/OIG data; Grants Management Operations Manual; Directive No. FIN 02-00-003, Financial and Administrative Monitoring of OSHA Grants and Cooperative Agreements.

YES 10%
3.7

Has the program taken meaningful steps to address its management deficiencies?

Explanation: OSHA conducts, on an ongoing basis, meetings that regularly include discussion of resources, performance and results. OSHA Managers and supervisors are required to provide periodic reports regarding progress in meeting programmatic goals. Specific feedback is provided throughout the performance cycle and deficiencies are dealt with as necessary. OSHA has long identified a need to enhance its internal data and information management capabilities. Consequently, the Agency is continuing design and development of the OSHA Information System (OIS) application. This new system will allow the Agency to manage safety and health program data and monitor current and emerging trends in workplace injuries and illnesses. Additionally, OSHA will be able to effectively track and evaluate performance of all Agency programs and initiatives including performance of partners. These enhanced data capabilities will give the Agency the ability to effectively manage and allocate resources to make the greatest impact on the reduction of injuries, illnesses, and fatalities on the job. Also in 2002, OSHA implemented rigorous data quality improvement procedures and emphasized to both federal offices and state partners the need for accurate and timely reporting of fatalities. As a result, fatality data from FY 2005 are more specific, more comprehensive and more reflective of the hazards found in today's workplace compared with the measures used in previously reported data. In accordance with the Department of Labor's Strategic Plan, SES managers direct resources toward achieving the Department's strategic goals. More specifically, OSHA managers have established baseline data to track the results of OSHA's intervention and outreach and compliance assistance activities. Additionally, OSHA SES and other managers' performance standards are linked towards meeting strategic goals. Performance evaluations and compensatory awards for managers correspond directly to their success in meeting their performance standards. Another critical management vulnerability for OSHA was the state of its existing data base system, the IMIS. OSHA conducted a comprehensive assessment of its data system in response to OIG and OMB related concerns and engaged an independent outside contractor to evaluate the system and make recommendations as to how best to address its shortcomings and the Agency's needs. The ongoing OIS enhancement discussed in 3.4 is the result of that effort.

Evidence: FY 2008 Congressional Budget Justification; Gartner Report.

YES 10%
3.RG1

Did the program seek and take into account the views of all affected parties (e.g., consumers; large and small businesses; State, local and tribal governments; beneficiaries; and the general public) when developing significant regulations?

Explanation: OSHA solicits and considers the views of all affected parties through both formal and informal mechanisms during the development of new or revised rules. OSHA holds stakeholder meetings early in the process to identify and discuss issues with affected parties. OSHA held such meetings on its planned rulemaking on Hearing Conservation in Construction, and will be holding stakeholder meetings on Ionizing Radiation in Spring of 2007. OSHA also meets with individual stakeholders in the early phases of rule development, such as when it A met with industry and labor representatives to discuss occupational risk issues associated with diacetyl, a chemical currently under consideration for regulatory action. In addition, OSHA presents issues in public forums, such as at conferences or, for our State government partners, at OSHA's Occupational Safety and Health State-Plan Association and Consultation Program Conferences. More formally, OSHA typically requests information from the regulated community through Requests for Information and Advance Notices of Proposed Rulemakings. Where OSHA has determined that impacts on small businesses are potentially significant, small-businesses' views are obtained through the SBREFA process. For most rulemakings, OSHA obtains information and opinions from inviting written public comment and holding public hearings. OSHA uses this same basic process in preparing non-rulemaking guideline documents. OSHA considers and analyzes the potential impact of its regulations on States, local and tribal governments, as well as the paperwork burden every rule will impose on the public and the extent to which a rule may create unfunded mandates. OSHA carefully considers each comment it receives at all stages of the regulatory process. Preambles to final rules always address comments in the rulemaking record in detail and describe the rationale OSHA used in responding to the comments. When a recommendation is found to be reasonable and appropriate in light of the entire rulemaking record, OSHA has responded in a number of ways. A recent example of OSHA's evaluation and response to comments is its Hexavalent Chromium proposal. In response to recommendations made by the SBREFA panel, OSHA made a number of changes to the initial draft regulatory text shared with the small entity representatives for their review and comment. For example, in response to small business concerns that certain sectors with low Cr(V) exposures be exempted from the standard, OSHA added an exemption for those employers who could demonstrate their processes would not result in employee exposures exceeding 0.5 ??g/m3 of Cr(VI) under any condition of use. OSHA also added a performance-based exposure monitoring option in response to a SBREFA recommendation to consider less frequent monitoring options. OSHA also revised and took into consideration in the development of its economic feasibility analysis a number of issues raised in the SBREFA recommendations. After receiving comments and testimony on the proposal, OSHA made additional changes before issuing the Chromium VI final rule. Several participants in the rulemaking submitted comments and data on OSHA's feasibility analysis, arguing that the proposed PEL of 1 ??g/m3 was not economically or technologically feasibility. Upon further analysis of these data and consideration of the comments, OSHA raised the final PEL to 5 ??g/m3. Another notable change was to add exposure monitoring requirements to construction and shipyards in response to many comments that supported adding exposure monitoring requirements for all sectors covered by the rule and not just for general industry.

Evidence: OSHA Request for Information on Ionizing Radiation 70 FR 22828; Advance notice of proposed rulemaking for Hazard Communication, 71 FR 53617; OSHA website (www.osha.gov/dcsp/smallbusiness/sbrefa.html) providing information on SBREFA proceedings; Final Rule on Hexavalent Chromium (FR Vol. 71, No. 39, February 28, 2006)??see 71 FR 10311 for complete description of each SBREFA recommendation and OSHA's response.

YES 10%
3.RG2

Did the program prepare adequate regulatory impact analyses if required by Executive Order 12866, regulatory flexibility analyses if required by the Regulatory Flexibility Act and SBREFA, and cost-benefit analyses if required under the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act; and did those analyses comply with OMB guidelines?

Explanation: [Address whether OSHA's rules address a statement of need for the rule in the preamble (including market failure), and examination of regulatory and non-regulatory approaches.] OSHA reviews its rules to determine whether they will have a significant impact on a substantial number of small entities. For those rules that are determined to meet this criterion, OSHA conducts both a SBREFA panel for the rule and provides a full regulatory flexibility analysis of the rule, in accordance with applicable requirements. OSHA has always estimated the costs and benefits of its rules in separate analyses, but did not monetize the value of human life or analyze the net benefits of all alternatives. OSHA had previously argued that past Supreme Court decisions prevented it from doing cost-benefit analysis and basing standards on such comparisons. In July 2003, however, OSHA committed to identifying the monetary costs, benefits and net benefits for all of OSHA's economically significant proposed and final regulations and including this analysis in its Regulatory Impact Analyses (RIA). Since that time all publicly released analyses of economically significant regulations, and even some regulations that were not economically significant, have included presentations of the monetary costs, benefits and net benefits of regulations and of the important alternatives to those regulations.

Evidence: Section 6(b) (5) of the Occupational Safety and Health Act requires health standards to ensure--to the extent feasible--that no employee "will suffer material impairment" even with "regular exposure to the hazard . . . for the period of his working life." In the 1981 "Cotton Dust" decision [American Textile Manufacturers Institute v. Donovan, 452 US 491], the Supreme Court stated that Congress in the Act had defined the intended relationship between costs and benefits, placing worker health above all else, and that any standard based on a different balancing of costs and benefits would contradict Congress' mandate. The Agency, however, has committed to identifying net benefits in its proposed and final regulations, and to include this information in its Regulatory Impact Analyses (memorandum of July 15, 2003 from Assistant Secretary John L. Henshaw to Steve Witt, Directorate of Standards and Guidance; Bruce Swanson, Directorate of Construction; and Robert Burt, Office of Regulatory Analysis-DEA). Accordingly, OSHA has a provided a full presentation of the benefits, costs, and net benefits of the final rule for occupational exposure to hexavalent chromium (Federal Register February 28, 2006, particularly pages 10263 to 10310). OSHA has also presented analyses of costs, benefits, and net benefits for alternative regulatory approaches for all rules that have gone through the SBREFA process since 2002 (See Preliminary Initial Regulatory Flexibility Analyses for Occupational Exposure to Silica; Confined Spaces; and Cranes and Derricks). OSHA's procedures for regulatory flexibility analysis are provided to the public on the DOL website: http://www.dol.gov/dol/regs/appendix.htm "Willful Blindness: Federal Agencies' Failure to Comply with the Regulatory Flexibility Act's Period Review Requirement - and Current Proposals to Invigorate the Act"; 33 Fordham Urb L.J.; p. 1226; May 2006.

YES 10%
3.RG4

Are the regulations designed to achieve program goals, to the extent practicable, by maximizing the net benefits of its regulatory activity?

Explanation: OSHA's rules do not maximize net benefits. Section 6(b) (5) of the Occupational Safety and Health Act requires health standards to ensure--to the extent feasible--that no employee "will suffer material impairment" even with "regular exposure to the hazard . . . for the period of his working life." In the 1981 "Cotton Dust" decision [American Textile Manufacturers Institute v. Donovan, 452 US 491], the Supreme Court stated that Congress in the Act had defined the intended relationship between costs and benefits, placing worker health above all else, and that any standard based on a different balancing of costs and benefits would contradict Congress' mandate. For this reason, OSHA argues that it cannot use maximizing net benefits as a criterion for regulatory decision making. Notwithstanding the Act and past Court decisions, however, OSHA standards could be designed to provide the same benefits in a less burdensome way. In addition, it is not clear that the same legal constraints on maximizing net benefits apply to safety rules. As discussed in 2.RG.2, OSHA has committed to identifying net benefits in its proposed and final regulations, and to include this information in its Regulatory Impact Analyses. The first such final rule is the final rule for occupational exposure to hexavalent chromium. OSHA is committed to providing such analyses, as shown by Preliminary Regulatory Economic Analysis of the revised Subpart V rule, and Preliminary Initial Regulatory Flexibility Analyses provided to SBREFA Panels on the cranes and derricks rule and the occupational exposure to silica rule. Though OSHA can not make maximizing net benefits a goal in its health rule making, OSHA is required to consider the cost-effectiveness of regulatory alternatives in developing new or revised rules. In order to provide for the consideration of cost-effectiveness for all economically significant rules, and even for some rules that are not economically significant, OSHA in most cases analyzes the costs and effectiveness of alternative rules, and in some cases analyzes alternative provisions of rules. OSHA does not always provide a sufficient analysis of alternatives, however. For example, OSHA issued an economically significant proposed rule on electric power generation in June, 2005, that has safety as the primary benefit. Although OSHA did identify the monetized costs and benefits of this rulemaking, analysis accompanying this proposed rule did not identify any regulatory alternatives; therefore, in this case it is difficult to conclude that OSHA is pursuing the most cost-effective policy. These analyses are commonly presented as part of OSHA's Regulatory Flexibility Analysis. Further, for rules that have a significant impact on a substantial number of small businesses, OSHA works with SBA, OIRA, and small business stakeholders to develop potentially cost-effective alternatives that OSHA's draft or proposed rule may not have considered, or may not have considered adequately.

Evidence: As a result of OSHA's examination of cost effectiveness issues, in the occupational exposure hexavalent chromium final rule, OSHA adopted a number of provisions designed to increase cost effectiveness, including a performance-oriented approach to exposure monitoring a provision permitting required training to be conducted on an as needed, rather than on a specified, schedule. (See FR Vol. 71, No. 39, February 28.2006, especially pages10309 to10325). Although this is the only economically significant rule that OSHA has finalized in recent years, the Agency's attention to the costs and effectiveness of alternatives is illustrated by the Initial Preliminary Regulatory Flexibility Analyses for occupational exposure to silica, confined spaces in construction, and cranes and derricks, and the Preliminary Regulatory Flexibility Analysis (Federal Register, Volume 70, Nr. 114, Wednesday, June 15, 2005, beginning on page 34882, for the proposed rule for electric power generation http://dockets.osha.gov/vg001/V047A/02/19/88.PDF.

NO 0%
Section 3 - Program Management Score 80%
Section 4 - Program Results/Accountability
Number Question Answer Score
4.1

Has the program demonstrated adequate progress in achieving its long-term performance goals?

Explanation: As reported in the DOL Annual Performance and Accountability Report, OSHA achieved its target injuries and illnesses rate reductions, but did not achieve its target reductions in the fatality rate.

Evidence: DOL FY 2005 and 2006 Annual Performance and Accountability Reports; Department of Labor FY 2006 - 2011 Strategic Plan.

SMALL EXTENT 7%
4.2

Does the program (including program partners) achieve its annual performance goals?

Explanation: OSHA met or exceeded its annual injury and illness rate targets for the discontinued long-term/annual outcome measure 3 in FYs 2003-2005. OSHA did not, however, achieve its target reductions in the fatality rate (long-term/annual measure 4) in FY 2005 or FY 2006. OSHA will begin reporting on performance against its annual targets for the new long-term/annual measures (1 and 2) in FY 2007. OSHA also develops Annual Operating Plans, which set target levels of performance for all aspects of its program, including enforcement, cooperative programs, compliance assistance, training and outreach. Organizational units' progress in meeting their annual performance targets is tracked, reported on, and assessed by management on a quarterly basis. In addition, the majority of OSHA-approved State Plans has achieved reduced injury and illness rates which contribute to the achievement of OSHA's annual performance goal. All cooperative program participants establish goals supporting OSHA's annual goal of reducing workplace injuries, illnesses and fatalities. At a minimum, these are evaluated annually to confirm that annual target and performance goals are being met.

Evidence: DOL FY 2005 and 2006 Annual Performance and Accountability Reports; OSHA FY 2007 Annual Operating Plan.

SMALL EXTENT 7%
4.3

Does the program demonstrate improved efficiencies or cost effectiveness in achieving program goals each year?

Explanation: As discussed in the answer to 3.4, OSHA does not have an acceptable efficiency measure, and so must receive a "no" for this question. OSHA has used competitive sourcing as a means of improving efficiency and reducing costs. To date, OSHA has conducted five competitions, resulting in a cost savings of over $17 million. OSHA is currently participating in three additional Departmental competitions, and plans to continue to use competitive sourcing as a tool to improve efficiency. OSHA consistently meets its workload targets in it program areas, including compliance assistance and enforcement activities. In FY 2006, OSHA exceeded its projected number of federal inspections by 2.3% without a concomitant increase in resources. OSHA's results indicate that the Agency's strategies are working. Workplace injuries and illnesses have been on a downward trend for the past 13 years. Between 1998 and 2005, the total injury and illness case rate decreased by 31 percent. Further, at 4.0 per 100,000 workers, the BLS Census of Fatal Occupational Injuries US on-the job fatality rate for all workers for 2005 was the lowest ever recorded. OSHA established rigorous accountability requirements to ensure that targets for Government-wide mandates for Alternative Fuel Vehicles acquisitions and petroleum fuel reductions were met to the extent possible. Managers must include appropriate fleet management provisions in performance standards and position descriptions of employees responsible to further assist OSHA in compliance with government-wide vehicle mandate.

Evidence: DOL FY 2005 and 2006 Commercial Activities and Inherently Governmental Inventories, Management Review Board Competitive Sourcing Update, FY 2008 Congressional Budget Justification.

NO 0%
4.4

Does the performance of this program compare favorably to other programs, including government, private, etc., with similar purpose and goals?

Explanation: There are Federal programs with missions similar to OSHA's. MSHA and EPA, for example, have similar missions (and are regulatory agencies) but operate under different statutes and have different jurisdictions. There are no data available comparing OSHA with these agencies, but such comparisons would not be too inherently difficult to perform. A comparative evaluation of OSHA and MSHA to examine the relative effectiveness and efficiency of their different enforcement approaches would have particular value and should be explored.

Evidence:

NO 0%
4.5

Do independent evaluations of sufficient scope and quality indicate that the program is effective and achieving results?

Explanation: The results of the independent studies assessed in 2.6. show that OSHA interventions and other OSHA programs are associated with positive results but raise significant questions that have not been explored by further evaluation. For example, a 2004 Eastern Research Group evaluation of OSHA's Site-Specific Targeting (SST) Program documented reduced injury and illness rates following an SST enforcement inspection. It found that OSHA inspections following issuance of High Hazard Notification letters were associated with a higher reduction in workplace injury and illnesses than issuance of letters alone. The study noted, however, that the lower injury/illness rates associated with letters may have been due to the implied increased probability of an OSHA inspection. Similarly, a 2005 Eastern Research Group evaluation of OSHA's voluntary guidelines found an association between reduced workplace injuries and illness and the implementation of voluntary guidelines. Awareness of voluntary guidelines among employers ranged from 29-59%, and implementation of at least one of those guidelines among those employers ranged from 30-60%. No study has been conducted on how OSHA might improve awareness of its voluntary guidelines or how to make them more effective. Finally, it is noteworthy that a 2005 Study published in Cornell University noted that that the effects of OSHA inspections on manufacturing injuries has declined drastically from 1979-1998 and that in some cases, non-penalty inspections were followed by increases in injuries. This study also pointed out that inspections may have larger effects in smaller workplaces and nonunion workplaces, that they may have a larger impact on injuries in nonunion workplaces, and that they may have no impact on restricted work activity injuries, which are a large and rising share of injuries. As discussed in 2.6, the comprehensiveness of the employed studies' methodology could also be improved. Although a variety of non-OSHA related variables (e.g. age, size, and location of business) may affect the existence of workplace illness, injuries, and fatalities, none of the studies conducted accounted for these variables. The collection of such information may also inform OSHA as to the relative effectiveness of various approaches for different types of work places.

Evidence: "Evaluation of OSHA's Impact on Workplace Injuries and Illnesses in Manufacturing Using Establishment-Specific Targeting of Interventions," Eastern Research Group, July 2004; "Evaluation of the Voluntary Protection Program Findings Report," The Gallup Organization, September 2005; "Evaluation of OSHA Voluntary Guidelines: Recommendations for Future Guidelines Development and Promotion Based on an Analysis of Three Existing Guidelines," Eastern Research Group, June 2006; "Inside the Black Box: How do OSHA Inspections Lead to Reductions in Workplace Injuries?", John Mendeloff and Wayne B. Gray, Law and Policy v. 2(2) p. 219, April 2005.

SMALL EXTENT 7%
4.RG1

Were programmatic goals (and benefits) achieved at the least incremental societal cost and did the program maximize net benefits?

Explanation: Once regulations are finalized, OSHA conducts lookback studies to determine possible problems with existing regulations and analytic studies of the results of OSHA rules. The studies examine whether the regulation has had the benefits anticipated, whether it has been feasible for employers to comply with, and whether there are opportunities for improving cost effectiveness by modifying or changing the rule. The lookback studies conclude with recommendations on guidance, enforcement policy, and possible needed regulatory changes needed. OSHA's lookback studies do not, however, analyze the net benefits of its regulations. OSHA has completed six lookback reviews on final standards: Lockout/Tagout (Control of Hazardous Energy Sources) (65 FR 38302-38304); Cotton Dust (65 FR 76667-76669); Grain Handling Facilities (68 FR12301-12303); Presence Sensing Device Initiation (PSDI) of Mechanical Power Presses (69 FR31927-31929); Ethylene Oxide (EtO) (70 FR 20807-20809); and Excavations (72 FR 14722-14728). Except for the lookback review on PSDI, each of these reviews demonstrated that the regulation achieved the benefits predicted and cost less (sometimes substantially less) than predicted. However, ex-post validations of OSHA's predicted costs and benefits show that OSHA has consistently overstated the benefit to cost ratio in its analyses. Of the 13 standards reviewed, OSHA overestimated the benefit to cost ratio in 11 cases. Cotton Dust (textile), in 1978; and Ethylene Oxide in 1984 were the only two identified by the reviews as accurate. The Formaldehyde standard for metal foundries, for example, overestimated benefits by a factor of 5. None of the completed lookback reviews has shown a significant, adverse impact from the final standard on a substantial number of small entities (small businesses). These lookback reviews, conducted under the Regulatory Flexibility Act, have proven to be very useful management tools in assessing the effectiveness of OSHA regulations. Lookback reviews have prompted OSHA to conduct outreach and compliance assistance activities and in some cases resulted in regulatory changes (see evidence). Nine OSHA regulations and guidance documents were identified as priority reform nominations in the Office of Management and Budget's 2005 Report "Regulatory Reform of the Manufacturing Sector." To date, OSHA has completed 5 of the 9 reforms, but 3 of the remaining reforms are more than a year overdue. Completing these reforms, which will increase the efficiency and cost-effectiveness of existing OSHA regulations, should be a high priority.

Evidence: For discussion of validation of cost and benefit estimates, see "Validating Regulatory Analysis: 2005 Report to Congress on the Costs and Benefits of Federal Regulations and Unfunded Mandates on State, Local, and Tribal Entities, /omb/inforeg/2005_cb/final_2005_cb_report.pdf. The Cotton Dust lookback study is one example of OSHA taking regulatory action based on lookback findings. As a result of public comments received during its review, OSHA amended the rule to add cotton washed in a batch kier system to the types of washed cotton partially exempt from the Cotton Dust Standard (65 FR 76563-76567)). In addition, as a result of public comments during the lookback review of the Ethylene Oxide Standard in February 2007, OSHA plans to publish a compliance guide on the standard. For information on manufacturing regulatory reforms, see "Regulatory Reform of the U.S. Manufacturing Sector," /omb/inforeg/reports/manufacturing_initiative.pdf.

SMALL EXTENT 7%
Section 4 - Program Results/Accountability Score 26%


Last updated: 09062008.2007SPR