Ryan Odendahl, the chairman of the Associated Builders and Contractors’ National Safety and Health Committee, wants to see two things coming out of Washington that are seemingly contradictory.
Appearing before a subcommittee of the U.S. House Committee on Education and Workforce, Odendahl, who is also president of the Toldeo-based Kwest Group construction company, said that federal rules and regulations that he described as “burdensome and confusing” do “nothing to improve job site safety, but instead stifle our workforce and ignore insightful input from our industry experts.”
Odendahl instead has called for a more collaborative relationship between Washington and the construction industry, contending that “federal agencies are most effective when they collaborate with employers to focus on proven, data-driven, and common-sense measures that support safe workplaces and effectively reduce the rates of injury, illness, and fatalities.”
Odendahl’s remarks came during a hearing exploring approaches to changing the federal government’s role in the regulation of private companies.
During that hearing, Alabama Representative Bradley Byrne, chairman of the House Subcommittee on Workforce Protections, said he is committed to studying how “regulatory costs can be controlled to allow for the continued growth of the nation’s economy, and the importance of Congress and the administration continuing to collaborate on a regulatory reform agenda.”
Odendahl added that while construction industry leaders are “striving to drive a culture of accident prevention,” he said it would be helpful if such agencies as the Occupational Safety and Health Administration were to provide more compliance assistance “when it comes to some of the complex rules and regulations facing our industry.”
By Garry Boulard
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