Occupational Safety and Health Data Collection and Injury Prevention Work Group

  • January 17, 2007:

Minutes:

Occupational Safety and Health Data Collection and Injury Prevention Work Group

Minutes

Bureau of Labor Standards First Floor Conference Room January 17, 2007 10:00 - 11:30 A.M.

Present: William Peabody, Chair (Maine Department of Labor), John Rioux, Vice Chair (Maine Department of Labor), Brad Brown (Maine Bureau of Insurance), Peter Doran (Maine Occupational Research Agenda), Brian Doe (Hannaford), Jeff Levesque (Workers’ Compensation Board), Kim Lim (Maine Department of Labor), Al May (Bureau of Health), Louise Morang (Maine Association of Occupational Nurses), and Leslie Walleigh (Workplace Health)

Absent: Gary Baxter (Maine Employers Mutual Insurance Company), Stephanie Jazlowiecki (McTeague-Higbee), Steve Minkowsky (Workers’ Compensation Board), Kathy Schulz (Workers’ Compensation Board), and Vanessa Santarelli (Maine Department of Labor), and Dave Wacker (Maine Department of Labor).

Staff: Terry Hathaway and Ted Bradstreet.

Call to Order. Bill Peabody called the meeting of the Occupational Safety and Health Data Collection and Injury Prevention Work Group to order at 10:13 a.m.

November 13, 2006 Minutes. Since the December meeting was cancelled, the group reviewed the minutes of November 13, 2006. John Rioux made a motion to accept the minutes as written. Louise Morang seconded the motion. Vote, unanimous.

Data & Prevention Subgroups Updates Data Subgroup – Al May. The Data Subgroup is where they need to be. Currently, the Maine CDC is making all carbon monoxide poisoning reportable. They are working with Dave Wacker on education.

Prevention Subgroup – John Rioux. John said that a random sample of 3,200 Small Business Needs Assessment surveys was mailed out. There are approximately 300 post office returns and approximately 800 surveys have come in. Ann Beaulieu is coding them for insurance and industry. Terry Hathaway will be entering the data. Discussion of what defines a small business. Leslie Walleigh inquired about the number of people and percent employed in small businesses. There was some discussion and, due to the complexity, John Rioux will refine and bring to the February meeting.

John said that only the survey data would be entered at this time; the ones with comments will be put aside for now. Leslie Walleigh suggested getting the results to the Prevention Subgroup before the next meeting.

Bill said there is a big push in the Legislature to refine the definition of “independent contractor”. The Maine Department of Labor (MDOL) and the Workers’ Compensation Board (WCB) are trying to refine and coordinate definitions around who would be included. Bill said that the State of Montana has a registration law for independent contractors (Workers’ Compensation and Unemployment Insurance are both under the Department of Labor).

Jeff stated that Kathy Schulz has been doing the top 100 Workers’ Compensation Costly Claims. The frequency rate for employees under two years was the same as the cost. This was not the case the first time around. The report will be coming out shortly. Leslie Walleigh requested that Kathy do a presentation at a future meeting.

Bill handed out a draft of the “Report of the Occupational Safety and Health Data Collection and Injury Prevention Work Group to the 122nd Legislature, Joint Standing Committee on Labor”. Members of the group also received a copy of last year’s annual report so they can compare the reports and send any suggestions to Bill on how to proceed and summarize at the February meeting. Members also need to check out the status of last year’s recommendations. Bill needs to clarify one of the templates with John Rioux.

2007 Work Plan. Jeff said that Workers’ Compensation and the Maine Department of Labor are moving to a new version of Progress. They are putting together a cross-functional team to test each function with the user groups before gong to a new server. This should be accomplished by May. John added that this will have the potential to improve data as to what the Bureau of Labor Standards needs and what Workers’ Compensation needs.

Bill said that there are still questions with the EDI system and what is happening with Workers’ Compensation regarding data quality. That should be reflected in this report.

Bill asked if the subgroup approach was still working and if it was useful. Leslie Walleigh said the Prevention Subgroup would analyze the data from the survey and make recommendations

The question regarding migrant workers and how does this fit with this group and how should it be approached. Brian suggested looking at migrant workers and independent contractors and will help develop focus.

Bill asked John to talk with Dave Wacker regarding OSHA grant.

Leslie Walleigh suggested a presentation on who the employers are in Maine as well as the hazards to help the group refocus and come up with a simple “tip” sheet.

Legislative Update – Bill Peabody. One piece of legislation is to prohibit carpeting in schools (due to off-gassing and mold) and encouraging the safe use of chemicals in schools. Some bills coming up not yet printed are “An Act to Disseminate Lessons Learned from Medical Injury Claims”, “An Act to Update the Authority of MEMIC to Better Serve the Needs of Maine Employers”, “An Act to Require Employees to Report a Work-Related Injury Within 24 Hours” as well as “An Act to Require Contractors Working on State Construction Projects Receive the 10-Hour Training”, “An Act to Require All Construction Vehicles to Have a Back-up Alarm”, “An Act to Amend the Seven-Day Waiting Period on Workers’ Compensation”.

Next meeting – Wednesday, February 21, 2007. The next meeting of the Occupational Safety and Health Data Collection and Injury Prevention Work Group will be held on Wednesday, February 21, 2007, at 10:00 a.m., first floor training room, Bureau of Labor Standards.

Adjournment. Bill Peabody adjourned the meeting at 11:45 a.m.

Respectfully submitted,

Terry M. Hathaway Recording Secretary