Dole v. United Steelworkers Of America

494 U.S. 26 (1990)


Pursuant to the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 (OSH Act), D promulgated a hazard communication standard. The goal was to inform employees of the potential hazards posed by chemicals found at their workplace. The standard required chemical manufacturers to label containers of hazardous chemicals with appropriate warnings. The standard also required chemical manufacturers to provide 'material safety data sheets' to downstream manufacturers. The data sheets were to list the physical characteristics and hazards of each chemical, the symptoms caused by overexposure, and any pre-existing medical conditions aggravated by exposure. The data sheets were to recommend safety precautions and first aid and emergency procedures in case of over-exposure and provide a source for additional information. Both chemical manufacturers and downstream manufacturers were required to make the data sheets available to their employees and to provide training on the dangers of the particular hazardous chemicals found at each workplace. United (P) challenged the standard in the Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit. The court directed OSHA either to apply the hazard standard rules to workplaces in other sectors or to state reasons why such application would not be feasible. D responded by initiating an entirely new rulemaking proceeding. The Third Circuit directed D, under threat of contempt, to publish in the Federal Register within 60 days either a hazard communication standard applicable to all workers covered by the OSH Act or a statement of reasons why such a standard was not feasible. D complied. The Paperwork Reduction Act of 1980 required the OMB to review and approve all information-collection requests (ICRs). OMB deemed D's disclosure requirement was an ICR. OMB rejected some of the requirements. D disagreed, but it withdrew the disclosure statements from its rule as per OMB. P contends the disclosures were not ICRs. P sued, and the Court of Appeals agreed that the statements were not ICRs and OMB lacked authority to review them. It ordered D to reinstate the statements as part of its rules. The Supreme Court granted certiorari.