March 14, 2019

President's Budget Proposal Suggests Small Increase for OSHA

President Trump’s budget request for fiscal year 2020 proposes a small increase for OSHA: $300,000 and 33 full-time equivalent employees over the FY 2019 enacted level. The budget request specifically includes increases for additional staff resources for the agency, including whistleblower investigators, compliance safety and health officers, and OSHA Training Institute instructors. Proposed cuts include eliminating the Susan Harwood Training Grants, which last year’s budget proposal characterized as “unnecessary and unproven.” OSHA’s training grants provide education for workers and employers on workplace safety and health hazards, responsibilities, and rights. The grants target underserved, low-literacy, and high-hazard industry workers.

The elimination of the grants is intended to help OSHA “maximize flexibility and use alternative methods to develop and distribute training materials to reach the broadest possible audience,” according to Department of Labor’s “Budget in Brief” (PDF).

Under President Trump’s proposal, MSHA would see a net budget increase of $2,227,000 over the FY 2019 revised enacted level. According to DOL’s budget document, the FY 2020 proposal includes $252,640,000 for new budget activity within MSHA, consolidating the Coal Mine Safety and Health and the Metal and Nonmetal Mine Safety and Health budget activities.

“The new enforcement structure would provide the flexibility to address industry changes and maximize the efficient use of MSHA’s resources,” the president’s proposal (PDF) reads.

The Trump administration’s proposal requests a $1.2 billion or 9.7-percent budget decrease from the 2019 enacted level for DOL, which would leave the department with $10.9 billion in FY 2020.

Detailed budget documentation from DOL is available on the department’s website. The president’s budget proposal is posted on the White House website.