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Madison Helping OSHA in Program

OSHA will have some assistance from Madison as the city is going to act as a watchdog for the organization in a new pilot program. OSHA has chosen 11 cities across the country for the project designed to reduce injuries and deaths at construction working sites.

Bill Foshee, director of the Madison's building and permit department said, "We're going to be their eyes in the field.” The initiative asks OSHA to work with and also to train the inspectors for local building to reduce the four leading causes of workplace deaths so that they can notify OSHA if they observe any unsafe conditions.

Labor Secretary, Hilda Solis wrote to Mayor Mary Hawkins Butler in a letter, "I believe that workplace enforcement is not only our responsibility, but our moral obligation. We need your help to send our inspectors where they can make the biggest difference."

Three building inspectors in the city will alert OSHA on unsafe and hazardous job sites so that the sites could be inspected by a federal compliance officer. Foshee said regarding their duty, “But we'll try to correct the situation ourselves if we can." More over Foshee has invited an OSHA spokesperson to Madison to speak at the Middle Mississippi Building Officials Association meeting in August to share a Powerpoint and handouts.

Madison is the smallest city among all other cities involved in the program and so Foshee is confused about the selection of the city for the program. He said, "Why us, I couldn't tell you. Maybe they heard we do things right here."

Also in the pilot program are Atlanta, Austin, Boise, Cincinnati, Concord, N.H., Greenwood Village, Colo., Newark, N. J., Oakland, Washington D.C. and Wichita, Kan.