The Obama Administration is working with OSHA to increase the number of inspections and the amount per fine for violations. These new enforcement initiatives for OSHA rules and regulations is an effort to recooperate from the current financial crisis. Is this the right move? Well it depends. Of the 2,400 state and federal inspectors and more than 8,000,000 small businesses that are regulated by OSHA, one might say they can't possibly cover them all. The result is insufficient accountability on behalf of small business owners to be OSHA compliant and therefore, less than adequate safety and health measures in their respective businesses. Small business owners will inevitably face additional costs, and these costs can be reduced or even eliminated with proper legal and environmental compliance support. Another might say that due to the increased number of inspections and larger fines, the demand for these services will increase substantially. Increased demand means employing additional resources, job creation, improved safety and health protocols in the workplace, and reduced costs for injury and illness which is estimated around $145 to $290 billion per year. Small business owners will no longer be able to neglect proper safety and health measures. Fortunately, preventative resources are available to prevent the substantial costs associated with fines, in addition to the direct and indirect costs associated with injury and illness. So, is it the right move.....job creation, economic growth, increased accountability, a more safe and healthy workforce, and a means for financial recovery.....I think we finally got one right. Would you rather pay higher taxes and fines for non-compliance or invest in making your practice a better place to work? We can view this as a penatly for the mediocre financial controls of our government or as an opportunity to improve our businesses. We can pay for the government's mistakes or invest in our own economic prosperity. Which road are you taking?
Jon Harris has been coaching and consulting small businesses for more than a decade. His expertise in legal and environmental compliance comes from years of experience assessing liability, developing and implementing action plans to eliminate those liabilities, and pioneering best practices to prevent reoccurrences. He is bringing his corporate experience to small business to foster a new approach to managing liability.