Flash Report: Standards Board Drama

The Cal/OSHA Standards Board rejected revisions to the COVID emergency temporary standard, based on myriad concerns, then reversed course and approved the controversial revisions. The reason: Voting down the proposal by the Division of Occupational Safety and Health would have left in place the current version of the ETS, a prospect that board chair David Thomas said is “much more onerous.”

The board also authorized a subcommittee of three of its members to work with DOSH as quickly as possible to make revisions that more closely align the ETS with current public health recommendations, and the governor’s plan to reopen California on June 15th.

The now-adopted revisions are headed to the state Office of Administrative Law and likely will take effect by the reopening date. The revisions mean that fully vaccinated employees will not need to wear masks indoors if all employees are vaccinated. They also will not need to be tested or quarantined after close contact and will not need to wear face coverings outdoors or at “mega events” any time.

The most controversial part of the revisions requires employers to provide respirators (N95s) to unvaccinated employees for voluntary use.

Was the Governor involved? What happened in or after the recess?

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