January 11, 2018
The National Stone, Sand & Gravel Association (NSSGA) reports that the Trump administration is continuing its efforts to repeal excess regulations with the release of the Fall Regulatory Agenda that provides information on agency priorities for the coming year. The administration has continued to fill positions in federal regulatory agencies with the most recent confirmation of David Ross to lead the Environmental Protection Agency‘s (EPA) Office of Water and William Wehrum to head the EPA’s Office of Air and Radiation.
The EPA plans to release its proposed rewrite of the 2015 Waters of the United States Rule (WOTUS) in May 2018 and finalize it in June 2019, thereby replacing the 2015 WOTUS rule. The NSSGA and its member companies plan to continue providing input to the administration on crafting a rule that protects the environment and is clear for operators. The EPA also noted that “Increasing Consistency, Reliability and Transparency in the Rulemaking Process” is in the pre-rule stage. This rule would require the EPA to provide the public with a better understanding of how it evaluates costs of regulatory actions when developing them.
The Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) is requesting public comment on existing standards and regulations that could be improved, streamlined, or replaced. This would make existing standards more effective and less burdensome by accommodating for advances in technology, innovative techniques, and less costly methods. MSHA also noted that the new Workplace Exams Rule is to conclude in June.
NSSGA is working with the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) to develop best practices for reducing overexposures to diesel exhaust in underground operations. The public comment period closed on Jan. 9. In April, the agency will seek input on possible improvements to the way it reviews petitions for modifications to standards.
“NSSGA will continue to work with the administration on streamlining requirements on important safety and environmental issues that affect the aggregates industry,” said Emily Coyner, NSSGA senior director of environmental policy, in a press release.