Apr 28, 2004
This Is Pretty Disgusting
But just another day in the life of Tom DeLay...
WASHINGTON (AP) - A man whose son was killed 11 years ago in a gruesome workplace accident urged Congress on Tuesday to give prosecutors the threat of felony convictions against employers whose neglect for federal safety rules causes a death.
Ron Hayes, a Fairhope, Ala., resident who in December ended his two-year term on the advisory panel overseeing the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, was in Washington to lobby for a proposal by Sens. Jon Corzine, D-N.J., and Edward Kennedy, D-Mass.
In past visits, Hayes has blasted what he calls lax oversight by OSHA and the Department of Labor.
Commerce Secretary Donald Evans called the Corzine-Kennedy proposal “just another policy to destroy jobs.” House Majority Leader Tom DeLay, R-Texas, said the proposal would be “the worst thing that you could do - telling a small business person that they could go to prison over an OSHA violation.”
In an investigative series on workplace deaths, The New York Times last year found 1,242 cases between 1982 and 2002 in which OSHA concluded workers had died because of “willful” safety violations by employers. OSHA sought prosecution on only 93 percent of those cases. There were only 11 convictions.
Update: Gurll has an excellent take in comments.