This evening I received and interesting email from the EO 1650 Working Group (it does pay to sign up for mailing lists) about their on-going attempts to comply with §6(a) of the Improving Chemical Safety and Security Executive Order. This section addressed the modernization of “key policies, regulations, and standards” in three general areas:
• Identifying identifies improvements to existing risk management practices through agency programs, private sector initiatives, Government guidance, outreach, standards, and regulations;
• Engaging key stakeholders to discuss the options and other means to improve chemical risk management that may be available; and
• Developing a plan for implementing practical and effective improvements to chemical risk management identified above.
The email announced that in support of these objectives the Working Group was soliciting public input. The email contained a link to an OSHA web page that provided a rather lengthy discussion (it took up 23 pages of a .PDF document attached to the email) of the programs affected and some of the options that are already being considered. Skimming the document it looks like there is only minimal overlap between this feedback request and the earlier OSHA PMN request for information.
It does include a solicitation of pubic input. Comments may be submitted via the Federal eRulemaking Portal (www.regulations.gov; Docket # OSHA-2013-0026). Comments should be submitted by March 31st, 2014. This date is almost five months past the ‘deadline’ (November 5th 2013) set forth in the EO for the §6(a) requirements. Well I never did really expect those deadlines to be met; this is way too complex and requires public input. The almost 90-day comment period is certainly a minimum amount of time to expect the sort of detailed responses being submitted.
The §6(a) request is a lengthy document addressing some very complex chemical safety and security issues. I should have a chance to read it this weekend and start some blog posts about interesting details.