Subchapter F. WORKPLACE SAFETY COMMITTEES


Sec.


129.1001.    Purpose.
129.1002.    Application for initial certification.
129.1003.    Minimum eligibility requirements.
129.1004.    Committee formation and membership.
129.1005.    Committee responsibilities.
129.1006.    Committee member training.
129.1007.    Certification.
129.1008.    Certification renewal affidavit.
129.1009.    Information verification.
129.1010.    Recordkeeping requirements.
129.1011.    Contesting final determinations.

Cross References

   This subchapter cited in 34 Pa. Code §  129.102 (relating to accident and illness prevention services requirements); 34 Pa. Code §  129.402 (relating to program requirements); 34 Pa. Code §  129.452 (relating to program requirements); and 34 Pa. Code §  129.457 (relating to service requirements).

§ 129.1001. Purpose.

 This subchapter sets forth the certification criteria for the operation of workplace safety committees established for the purpose of accident and illness prevention. An applicant-employer shall meet the criteria in this subchapter to obtain certification or certification renewal of its workplace safety committees for its workplaces within this Commonwealth.

§ 129.1002. Application for initial certification.

 (a)  An applicant-employer desiring to apply for certification of its workplace safety committee shall file form LIBC-372, Application for Certification of Workplace Safety Committee, with the Bureau. An application shall be filed for each legal entity of the applicant-employer and shall include all information and documentation requested in form LIBC-372.

 (b)  An applicant-employer shall file one application which shall incorporate all of the applicable applicant-employer workplaces within this Commonwealth.

 (c)  Applications shall be submitted to the Bureau between 90- and 30-calendar days prior to the annual renewal of a workers’ compensation policy, self-insurance renewal year or group self-insurance fund year.

§ 129.1003. Minimum eligibility requirements.

 (a)  An applicant-employer’s committees shall be located within this Commonwealth.

 (b)  The committee shall be in existence and operating according to the requirements of this subchapter for 6 full, consecutive calendar months prior to the signing, dating and submission of the application.

 (c)  The committee membership shall represent all primary operations of the workplace.

 (d)  The committees shall be composed of a minimum of two employer-representatives and a minimum of two employee-representatives.

 (e)  Employer-representatives are individuals who, regardless of job title or labor organization affiliation, and based upon an examination of that individual’s authority or responsibility, do one or more of the following:

   (1)  Select or hire an employee.

   (2)  Remove or terminate an employee.

   (3)  Direct the manner of employee performance.

   (4)  Control the employee.

 (f)  Employee-representatives are individuals who perform services for an employer for valuable consideration and do not possess any authority or responsibility described in subsection (e).

 (g)  A person may not function as both an employer-representative and an employee-representative.

§ 129.1004. Committee formation and membership.

 (a)  An applicant-employer who has only one workplace within this Commonwealth shall form a single workplace safety committee at that workplace within this Commonwealth for certification.

 (b)  An applicant-employer who has more than one workplace within this Commonwealth may form either a single, centralized workplace safety committee representing each of its workplaces within this Commonwealth or separate and individual safety committees at each workplace within this Commonwealth for certification.

 (c)  The committee shall be composed of at least an equal number of applicant-employer and employee-representatives unless otherwise agreed upon by both parties. An applicant-employer shall provide a satisfactory, written explanation to the Bureau when a committee is not composed of an equal number of applicant-employer and employee-representatives and a majority of applicant-employer representatives exists. The explanation shall be signed by one employer and one employee committee representative.

 (d)  Workplace safety committees shall establish procedures that retain a core group of experienced members to serve on the committee at all times.

 (e)  Employee-representatives of the committees shall:

   (1)  Be permitted to take reasonable time from work to perform committee duties, without loss of pay or benefits.

   (2)  Join the committee for a continuous term of 1 year from the date of the first meeting attended. Records of member rotation shall be maintained by the applicant-employer for 5 years from the date of the Bureau’s receipt of the application.

§ 129.1005. Committee responsibilities.

 (a)  To qualify for certification, workplace safety committees shall have responsibilities including:

   (1)  Representing the accident and illness prevention concerns of employees at every applicant-employer workplace.

   (2)  Reviewing the applicant-employer’s hazard detection and accident and illness prevention programs and formulating written proposals.

   (3)  Establishing procedures for periodic workplace inspections by the safety committees for the purpose of locating and identifying health and safety hazards. The locations and identity of hazards shall be documented in writing, and the committees shall make proposals to the applicant-employer regarding correction of the hazards.

   (4)  Conducting review of incidents resulting in work-related deaths, injuries and illnesses and of complaints regarding health and safety hazards made by committee members or other employees.

   (5)  Conducting follow-up evaluations of newly implemented health and safety equipment or health and safety procedures to assess their effectiveness.

   (6)  Establishing a system to allow the committee members to obtain safety-related proposals, reports of hazards or other information directly from persons involved in the operation of the workplace.

 (b)  A quorum of committee members shall meet at least monthly.

 (c)  The committees shall additionally:

   (1)  Develop operating procedures, such as rules or bylaws, prescribing the committees’ duties.

   (2)  Develop and maintain membership lists.

   (3)  Develop a written agenda for each committee meeting.

   (4)  Maintain committee meeting attendance lists.

   (5)  Take and maintain minutes of each committee meeting, which the applicant-employer shall review. Copies of minutes shall be posted or made available for all employees and shall be sent to each committee member.

   (6)  Ensure that the reports, evaluations and proposals of the committees become part of the minutes of the meeting which shall include:

     (i)   Inspection reports.

     (ii)   Reports on specific hazards and corrective measures taken.

     (iii)   Reports on workplace injuries or illnesses.

     (iv)   Management responses to committee reports.

   (7)  Make decisions by majority vote.

Cross References

   This section cited in 34 Pa. Code §  129.1010 (relating to recordkeeping requirements).

§ 129.1006. Committee member training.

 (a)  The applicant-employer shall, itself or through its insurer, provide adequate, annual training programs for each committee member listed in the application.

 (b)  Annually required committee member training shall at a minimum address:

   (1)  Hazard detection and inspection.

   (2)  Accident and illness prevention and investigation (including substance abuse awareness and prevention training), safety committee structure and operation.

   (3)  Other health and safety concerns specific to the business of the applicant-employer.

 (c)  Prior to submitting an application to the Bureau and annually thereafter, all committee members shall receive training in the topics listed in subsection (b) from individuals who meet Bureau requirements for accident and illness prevention services providers as defined in Subchapter E (relating to accident and illness prevention services providers requirements) or who have been recognized by the Bureau as qualified trainers.

 (d)  Applicant-employers are responsible for providing verification of trainer qualifications to the Bureau and supplying, as necessary, documentation supporting individual trainer qualifications.

 (e)  The applicant-employer shall maintain written records of safety committee training including:

   (1)  The names of committee members trained.

   (2)  The dates of training.

   (3)  The training time period.

   (4)  The training methodology.

   (5)  The names and credentials of personnel conducting the training.

   (6)  The names of training organizations sponsoring training, if applicable.

   (7)  The training location.

   (8)  The training topics.

Cross References

   This section cited in 34 Pa. Code §  129.1010 (relating to recordkeeping requirements).

§ 129.1007. Certification.

 (a)  If the Bureau determines that the applicant-employer’s committees meets the requirements, it will send a letter of certification approval to the applicant-employer. The Bureau will grant certification approval to an applicant-employer who, by signing the acknowledgements and agreements page of the application, agrees to continue to operate the workplace safety committee according to all requirements upon which initial certification is based. The employer may not disband committees except for valid business reasons.

 (b)  The insured applicant-employer shall submit a copy of the letter of certification approval to its insurer to receive an initial 5% reduction of its workers’ compensation premium. The reduction will be effective upon the commencement of the policy renewal period next following the date of Bureau certification. An applicant-employer who is a member of a group self-insurance fund established to grant a 5% reduction in annual member contributions, shall submit a copy of the letter of certification to its group self-insurance fund administrator to receive the initial 5% contribution reduction. The reduction will be effective at the commencement of the next group self-insurance fund year following certification.

 (c)  The Bureau will notify the Pennsylvania Compensation Rating Bureau of approved insured applicant-employers.

 (d)  If an application is disapproved, the applicant-employer will receive written notification listing specific reasons for disapproval. The applicant-employer may resubmit a corrected application for reconsideration prior to the renewal of its workers’ compensation policy, self-insurance renewal year or group self-insurance fund year. The applicant-employer may challenge the disapproval determination under Subchapter G (relating to hearings).

§ 129.1008. Certification renewal affidavit.

 (a)  After initial certification, the applicant-employer may, using form LIBC-372R, Certification Renewal Affidavit of Workplace Safety Committee, apply to the Bureau for renewal of its initial safety committee certification. Affidavits will be generated by the Bureau and provided to eligible applicant-employers for submission. Affidavits shall be submitted to the Bureau between 90 and 15 calendar days prior to the annual renewal of a workers’ compensation policy, self-insurance renewal year or group self-insurance fund year. Certification may be renewed for a total of 4 remaining years after the initial certification.

 (b)  If an applicant-employer has established additional safety committees which have not previously been certified, an Application for Certification of Workplace Safety Committee shall be completed and approved by the Bureau before certification renewal may be granted. Certification renewal approval is granted to an applicant-employer who, by signing the acknowledgements and agreements page of the affidavit, attests that the certified workplace safety committee has continued to operate according to the requirements upon which initial certification approval was based. Employers will not disband committees except for valid business reasons.

 (c)  If the Bureau determines that the applicant-employer has met certification renewal requirements, it will send a letter of certification renewal approval to the applicant-employer.

 (d)  An insured applicant-employer shall submit a copy of the letter of certification renewal to its insurer to receive a 5% premium reduction of its workers’ compensation insurance premium at the next renewal premium period following the date of Bureau certification renewal. An applicant-employer who is a member of a group self-insurance fund established to grant a 5% reduction in annual member contributions, shall submit a copy of the letter of certification renewal approval to its group self-insurance fund administrator to receive the renewal 5% contribution reduction. The reduction will be effective at the commencement of the next group self-insurance fund year following certification renewal.

 (e)  The Bureau will notify the Pennsylvania Compensation Rating Bureau of all approved insured applicant-employers.

 (f)  If a renewal affidavit is disapproved, the Bureau will notify the applicant-employer of the specific reasons for disapproval. The applicant-employer may resubmit a corrected renewal affidavit for reconsideration prior to the renewal of its workers’ compensation policy, self-insurance renewal year or group self-insurance fund year. The applicant-employer may challenge the disapproval under Subchapter G (relating to hearings).

§ 129.1009. Information verification.

 The Bureau may verify the information submitted by application or affidavit including pertinent supporting documentation.

§ 129.1010. Recordkeeping requirements.

 Copies of the required documents of the functioning committee as defined in § §  129.1005(c) and 129.1006(e) (relating to committee responsibilities; and committee member training) shall be retained by the applicant-employer for 5 years.

§ 129.1011. Contesting final determinations.

 An applicant-employer may contest a final application or affidavit determination under Subchapter G (relating to hearings).



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