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104th Congress                                                   Report
                        HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

 1st Session                                                    104-278
_______________________________________________________________________


 
  AUTHORITY FOR 16 AND 17 YEAR OLDS TO LOAD MATERIALS INTO BALERS AND 
                               COMPACTORS
_______________________________________________________________________


October 17, 1995.--Committed to the Committee of the Whole House on the 
              State of the Union and ordered to be printed

                                _______


     Mr. Goodling, from the Committee on Economic and Educational 
                 Opportunities, submitted the following

                              R E P O R T

                             together with

                             MINORITY VIEWS

                        [To accompany H.R. 1114]

      [Including cost estimate of the Congressional Budget Office]

  The Committee on Economic and Educational Opportunities, to 
whom was referred the bill (H.R. 1114) to authorize minors who 
are under the child labor provisions of the Fair Labor 
Standards Act of 1938 and who are under 18 years of age to load 
materials into balers and compacters that meet appropriate 
American National Standards Institute design safety standards, 
having considered the same, report favorably thereon with an 
amendment and recommend that the bill as amended do pass.
  The amendment is as follows:
  Strike out all after the enacting clause and insert in lieu 
thereof the following:

SECTION 1. AUTHORITY FOR 16 AND 17 YEAR OLDS TO LOAD MATERIALS INTO 
                    BALERS AND COMPACTORS.

  In the administration of the child labor provisions of the Fair Labor 
Standards Act of 1938, individuals who are 16 and 17 years of age shall 
be permitted to load materials into cardboard balers and compactors 
that are safe for the 16 and 17 year olds loading the equipment and 
which cannot operate while being loaded. For purposes of this section, 
such balers and compactors shall be considered safe for 16 and 17 year 
olds loading such equipment if they are in compliance with the most 
current safety standard established by the American National Standards 
Institute.

                       explanation of amendments

    The provisions of the substitute text are explained in this 
report.

                                purpose

    The purpose of H.R. 1114, as amended, is to permit 16 and 
17 year olds to load materials into cardboard balers and 
compactors that are (1) safe and (2) cannot operate while being 
loaded. Such balers and compactors shall be considered safe if 
they are in compliance with the most current safety standards 
for such equipment established by the American National 
Standards Institute.

                            committee action

    H.R. 1114 was introduced by Representative Thomas Ewing on 
March 2, 1995. The Subcommittee on Workforce Protections held a 
hearing on H.R. 1114 on July 11, 1995. Testimony was received 
from the Honorable Thomas W. Ewing, Member of Congress; the 
Honorable Larry Combest, Member of Congress; Ms. Virginia L. 
Lutz, Safety Supervisor, Lowes Food Stores, Inc.; and Ms. Judy 
Golodner, President, National Consumers League.
    On July 20, 1995, the Committee on Economic and Educational 
Opportunities approved H.R. 1114, as amended, on a voice vote, 
and by a vote of 21-13, ordered the bill favorably reported.

                     Committee Statement and Views

Background

Hazardous Occupation Order Number 12

    Section 12 of the Fair Labor Standards Act prohibits the 
use of ``oppressive'' child labor. In implementing that 
provision, the Secretary of Labor has determined that certain 
occupations are ``particularly hazardous for the employment of 
minors between 16 and 18 years of age or detrimental to their 
health or well-being,'' (29 CFR Part 570, Subpart E) and 
therefore prohibited or limited minors of ages 16 and 17 from 
employment in those occupations. The occupations so limited or 
prohibited are described in a series of Hazardous Occupation 
Orders.
    Hazardous Occupation Order Number 12 (HO 12) was adopted in 
1954. HO 12 prohibits persons under 18 years of age from 
``operating or assisting to operate'' certain ``power driven 
paper product machines.'' Among the several paper product 
machines listed in HO 12 (most of which pertain to the 
production of paper) are ``scrap paper balers''.
    When HO 12 was written in 1954, the term ``scrap paper 
baler'' referred to a machine with a large horizontal ram and 
an unprotected opening that was fed scrap paper for baling. The 
open charge box of the baler presented an obvious hazard. The 
1954 Department of Labor report entitled Occupational Hazards 
to Young Workers, Report No. 12, The Operation of Paper 
Products Machines states: ``it would be possible for a person's 
arm to be caught by the descending plunger should someone else 
operate the control mechanism while paper was being manually 
placed in the baler.''
    In December, 1991, the Department of Labor issued two 
changes to HO 12. First, the Department ruled that HO 12 
applied to all power-driven machinery used to convert paper 
into waste paper, and thereby ``clarified'' that modern paper 
balers and compactors are covered by HO 12, just as were the 
earlier ``scrap paper balers.'' Second, the Department extended 
the prohibition on minors ``operating or assisting to operate'' 
such machinery to include ``placing or removing materials into 
or from the machine''. Thus, under the new rules, it is illegal 
for minors to throw cardboard boxes into nonoperating machines, 
even those with modern safety designs which prevent the machine 
from operating while being loaded.
    The Department of Labor made these changes to HO 12 despite 
the fact that the Department admits that it did not have 
information on whether the paper balers involved in accidental 
injuries met modern safety standards.1 The Department of 
Labor now makes no distinction between safe or unsafe 
equipment. It simply prohibits all minors from loading any 
paper into any compactor or baler.
    \1\ Department of Labor response to the request for research on the 
topic of paper balers from the House Committee on Appropriations. June 
21, 1994.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

Safety standards for modern paper balers and compactors.

    As described above, the HO 12 was written when scrap paper 
balers included little in the way of safety precautions. Since 
1954, however, a number of design changes and additional safety 
devices have been added to most newly manufactured paper balers 
and compactors to avoid accidental operation and injury. The 
most rigorous and comprehensive set of safety requirements used 
by industry are those which have been developed by the American 
National Standard Institute.
    The American National Standards Institute (ANSI) is a 
national organization which coordinates the development of 
voluntary, consensus standards in a wide range of areas, 
including product and worker safety. ANSI standards have been 
used by Congress as expressions of the best available 
technology in the safety area. For example, the Occupational 
Safety and Health Act of 1970 directed the Department of Labor 
to adopt the then-existing ANSI standards, rather than delay 
any activity until the agency promulgated occupational safety 
and health standards. (Section 6 (a) of the Occupational Safety 
and Health Act, 29 U.S.C. Sec.655 (a)).
    The first ANSI safety standard for paper balers was issued 
in 1982. The baler standard was revised in 1990 (ANSI Z245.5) 
and is currently undergoing a thorough review by the committee 
charged with this standard. A revised standard is expected to 
be issued later this year. Similarly, the ANSI standard for 
stationary compactors (ANSI Z245.2) was most recently revised 
in 1992.
    Unlike the 1954-era ``scrap paper balers'' which were the 
subject of HO 12 and which lacked any significant safety 
design, equipment meeting the current ANSI standards must 
conform to all of the following specifications:
    The ram shall not move unless the bale chamber door is 
fully closed and latched; the ram shall stop or return to the 
rest position if the closure chamber is opened more than one-
half inch during the compression stroke;
    The loading chamber closure shall completely cover the 
chamber before the ram can be activated;
    A mechanical or electrical interlock to prevent operator 
access to the top of the baler ram during its upward motion;
    Access covers, doors and protective shields which are 
secured by a lockable device;
    Protective shields that cover parts of the drive mechanism 
which could cause injury to the operator;
    Controls which are conspicuously labeled and start buttons 
that are recessed to prevent inadvertent activation;
    Stop buttons that are red and easily distinguishable from 
all other controls and are not recessed;
    A power disconnecting means that can be locked in the off 
position;
    An emergency means of stopping and controlling the movement 
of the ram;
    An emergency stop button at the tying device; and
    Platforms with guardrails and slip resistant floors;
    Of particular importance is that current ANSI standards 
require that the design of paper balers and compactors include 
a safety gate over the loading chamber opening, which prevents 
the operation of the baling machine when the gate is open. 
Sections 5.2.2 and 5.2.2.1 of the 1990 ANSI standard for Paper 
Balers states ``A loading chamber shall be provided. The 
loading chamber closure shall completely cover the loading 
chamber before the ram can be activated into its compression 
stroke and must remain in place until the completion of the 
compression stroke.'' In addition, Section 7.2 of the 1992 ANSI 
standard for paper compactors states ``All charging hopper 
access doors on automatic cycling compactor installations shall 
have an interlock system that prevents cycling motion while the 
access door(s) is open.''
    In short, paper balers and compactors meeting current ANSI 
standards cannot operate while being loaded. Analogy has been 
made to the microwave ovens that most people today have in 
their homes: when the door (or gate) is open, the machine will 
not operate.

Effect of HO 12

    The effect of HO 12, when applied to modern paper balers 
and compactors, has been penalties and increased costs for 
employers and reduced job opportunities for teenage workers but 
with no demonstrated increase in safety. In testimony before 
the committee, Ms. Virginia Lutz, Safety Supervisor for Lowes 
Foods, described the effects of HO 12 this way:

    HO 12 has created real disruptions in the supermarket 
industry. The enforcement steps by the Labor Department and the 
many citations and fines have made supermarket operators shy 
away from hiring teenagers. It's just not worth the risk of 
exposure.
    Why would allowing teens only to load cardboard balers and 
compactors make a difference to us? Because it is the younger 
associates in stores who generally have the jobs of cleaning up 
and stocking shelves, and it is duplicative and inefficient to 
have the empty boxes carried to the baler by these employees, 
only to be put on the floor to await another employee who is 
permitted to toss them into the baler without fear of 
government fine. And very often, because the backrooms where 
the baler is usually located are small, the clutter of boxes 
can itself become a hazard, and in fact is then often an OSHA 
housekeeping violation.
    But on top of this, it just does not make sense to prohibit 
a 16 or 17 year old from tossing a cardboard box into a machine 
that is obviously dormant--shut off. It sits there, silent, 
looking like a glorified trash bin. The point is, to reasonable 
people, the rule makes no sense at all, and they are prone to 
their good judgment and common sense letting them toss the box 
into the baler.
    Of course, no matter how firm a policy a store has against 
this, no matter how many times a teenager is told not to toss 
boxes into the baler or compactor, the owner of the store will 
still be cited by the Wage and Hour Division.
    Despite the fact that there is no evidence of injuries 
caused in the loading of modern paper balers and compactors, 
and despite the fact that modern paper balers and compactors 
have been designed so as to prevent their operation during the 
loading process, the Department of Labor has failed to take 
action to change HO 12. In 1994, the Committee on 
Appropriations requested that the Department of Labor 
``reexamine hazardous occupation order number 12 as it applies 
to the use of cardboard baler machines'' (House Report 103-533, 
page 17).
    In response, the Department of Labor said it lacked 
sufficient information that modern paper balers were safe - 
while at the same time admitting that the Department had no 
information in showing that modern balers were unsafe or had 
been involved in any of the reported accidental injuries. The 
Department also reported that it planned to begin rule making 
to evaluate changes to HO 12, including issuing a Notice of 
Proposed Rulemakeing (NPRM) by May, 1995. However, no NPRM has 
been issued by the Department.
    In a letter to the Chairman of the Committee opposing H.R. 
1114, the Secretary of Labor relies upon on 1994 report on 
paper balers by the National Institute on Occupational Safety 
and Health (NIOSH). The NIOSH study consisted of observing five 
paper baler machines in the Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania area. 
According to NIOSH, four of the five machines did not meet ANSI 
standards. The study concluded that ``of the five machines 
evaluated, we found only one to be safe'' ``Review of 
Safeguarding technology used on paper balers,'' 5/4/95). The 
one machine found safe by NIOSH was also the only one of the 
five that met the current ANSI standard. Of course, that one 
paper baler found safe by NIOSH would also be the only one of 
the five which minors would be permitted to load under this 
legislation.

Legislative remedy

    The purpose of H.R. 1114, as amended, is to amend the child 
labor provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) in 
order to permit 16 and 17 year olds to load materials into 
paper balers and compactors which (1) cannot operate while 
being loaded, and (2) are safe. Such balers and compactors are 
considered safe if they are in compliance with the most current 
safety standards established by the American National Standards 
Institute (ANSI).
    It should be noted that H.R. 1114, as amended, does not 
permit 16 and 17 year olds to operate or unload paper balers or 
compactors. These activities are still forbidden under the 
child labor provisions of the FLSA under HO 12.
    After the Department of Labor clarification to HO 12 in 
December of 1991, the Department began retroactively enforcing 
HO 12 regarding paper balers and compactors. Rather than 
focusing on whether the paper balers and compactors were safe 
for purposes of loading by teenagers, the Department focused on 
strict enforcement of the rule, resulting in substantial 
penalties against employers. HO 12's strict prohibition on 
loading modern paper balers and the Department of Labor's 
penalties in enforcing that prohibition appear to be 
unjustified by any benefit to safety.
    Much of the stated concern with H.R. 1114 has to do with 
the alleged difficulty of enforcement. For example, the 
Department of Labor, in arguing against the legislation, said 
that it is likely that less than one-half of paper balers in 
use throughout the United States do not meet current ANSI 
standards, and that, according to the Department, the 
legislation will cause ``confusion over which balers the minors 
may legally load.'' 2
    \2\ July 19, 1995 Department of Labor letter from Secretary Robert 
Reich to Representative William F. Goodling, Chairman, Committee on 
Economic and Educational Opportunities.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Determining whether a paper baler or compactor meets ANSI 
standards, and thus may by legally loaded by a 16 or 17 year 
old, should not be difficult for either the employer or the 
Department of Labor. A paper baler or compactor which has been 
manufactured to the most current safety standards established 
by ANSI will so indicate on the machine itself and/or in 
attached operating guides or paperwork. Furthermore, if 
enforcement personnel suspect for any reason that a machine 
that has been designed and manufactured to meet ANSI standards 
has been subsequently tampered with or not properly maintained, 
the Department of Labor can simply review and examine the 
machine and maintenance records to make sure that it is 
functioning properly. Certainly the result of this legislation 
is a situation no more difficult to enforce and far more 
common-sensical than the current situation where the Department 
of Labor has to ask teenagers whether they ever put a box into 
an inoperable machine, rather than setting it on the floor next 
to the machine.
    Modern cardboard balers are designed to prevent their 
operation when the loading gate is open, and many newly 
manufactured balers are now incorporating a key lock system 
which prevents operation unless the equipment is unlocked by 
use of the key.
    Some persons have expressed concern that minors, who are 
not authorized to operate paper balers and compactors under 
this legislation, may have access to the operating key and will 
operate the machinery. They, therefore, have urged that further 
restrictive language be added to the bill requiring the key to 
be kept at all times in the custody of an adult and specifying 
that the machine should not be operated in the presence of any 
16 or 17 year old employee.
    In the Committee's opinion, such restrictions are 
unnecessary. Under H.R. 114, teenagers are not permitted to 
operate or unload a baler, even modern balers that meet current 
ANSI standards. Employers who allow a minor to use a key to 
operate a baler or compactor would be in violation of the law. 
Furthermore, H.R. 1114 specifies that loading of cardboard 
boxes by minors is limited to only those balers and compactors 
meeting current ANSI safety standards. The current ANSI safety 
standard (ANSI Z245. 1990) does not require a key lock system, 
though this enhanced safety feature may be required under the 
next ANSI safety standard that is presently under development.
    In that HO 12 does not impose any access restrictions on 
the control features that make a baler operational, the 
Committee believes that it would be unreasonable and 
inappropriate to impose such restrictions on the most modern 
balers that incorporate a key lock system. Restrictions of this 
would result in micro-management of the workplace, and would 
undermine the intent and principle of H.R. 1114, which is to 
relieve employers of unnecessary and over reaching regulations. 
Employers are responsible for insuring that employees under the 
age of 18 do not operate paper balers or compactors of any kind 
and where those paper balers do include a key lock system, the 
Committee expects and encourages employers to take the 
necessary steps to ensure that keys will be inaccessible to 
teenage employees. Finally, on this issue of key accessibility, 
the Committee wishes to emphasize that even if the key is in 
the machine and the equipment is actually engaged, any attempt 
by an employee to open the gate for loading purposes will 
result in the equipment immediately shutting down and becoming 
inoperable due to the ANSI safety design features.
    With respect to concerns that minors should not be present 
when the equipment is being operated, the Committee believes 
that a legislative restriction is not justified. Under HO 12, 
there is presently no such prohibition that balers and 
compactors are not to be operated in the presence of teenage 
employees. Additionally, no evidence or data has been presented 
to the Committee showing that minors are being injured because 
they were near a baler or compactor while the equipment was 
being operated that would warrant this type of limitation under 
H.R. 1114.

Conclusion

    First and foremost, it is the view of the Committee that 
the safety of minors should be safeguarded. The intent of H.R. 
1114, as amended, is to permit 16 and 17 year olds to engage in 
an activity that is not dangerous. In particular, H.R. 1114, as 
amended, will authorize 16 and 17 year olds to load materials 
into machines which (1) cannot operate while being loaded, and 
(2) meet the most current safety standards established by the 
American National Standards Institute (ANSI). Permitting 
employers to allow teenagers to load paper balers and 
compactors, if those machines meet current safety standards, 
will create an additional incentive for more employers to 
upgrade their paper baling equipment to meet the current safety 
standards. The employers will have on to replace older 
equipment with new equipment, in that they will not be 
penalized if a 16 or 17 year old happens to throw paper or 
boxes into the machine. As such, it is the view of the 
Committee that H.R. 1114, as amended, poses no increased threat 
of injury to 16 and 17 year olds.

                                Summary

    H.R. 1114, as amended, would amend the child labor 
provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) to authorize 
16 and 17 year olds to load materials into cardboard balers and 
compactors that are (1) safe, and (2) cannot operate while 
being loaded. Such balers and compactors shall be considered 
safe if they are in compliance with the most current safety 
standards established by the American National Standards 
Institute.

                      section-by-section analysis

Section 1

    Provides that 16 and 17 year olds are permitted to load 
materials into cardboard balers and compactors that are safe, 
and which cannot operate while being loaded. Such balers and 
compactors shall be considered safe if they are in compliance 
with the most current safety standards established by the 
American National Standards Institute.

  statement of oversight findings and recommendations of the committee

    In compliance with clause 2(l)(3)(A) of rule XI of the 
Rules of the House of Representatives and clause 2(b)(1) of 
rule X of the Rules of the House of Representatives, the 
Committee's oversight findings and recommendations are 
reflected in the body of this report.

                     inflationary impact statement

    In compliance with clause 2(l)(4) of rule XI of the Rules 
of the House of Representatives, the Committee estimates that 
the enactment into law of H.R. 1114 will have no significant 
inflationary impact on prices and costs in the operation of the 
national economy. It is the judgment of the Committee that the 
inflationary impact of this legislation as a component of the 
federal budget is negligible.

                    government reform and oversight

    With respect to the requirement of clause 2(l)(3)(D) of 
rule XI of the Rules of the House of Representatives, the 
Committee has received no report of oversight findings and 
recommendations form the Committee on Government Reform and 
Oversight on the subject of H.R. 1114.

                           committee estimate

    Clause 7 of rule XIII of the Rules of the House of 
Representatives requires an estimate and a comparison by the 
Committee of the costs which would be incurred in carrying out 
H.R. 1114. However, clause 7(d) of that rule provides that this 
requirement does not apply when the Committee has included in 
its report a timely submitted cost estimate of the bill 
prepared by the Director of the Congressional Budget Office 
under section 403 of the Congressional Budget Act of 1974.

                application of law to legislative branch

    Section 102(b)(3) of Public Law 104-1 requires a 
description of the application of this bill to the legislative 
branch. This bill in effect changes requirements under the Fair 
Labor Standards Act. As Congress is covered under the relevant 
FLSA requirements, this legislation would apply to Congress.

                        changes to existing law

    There were no changes made to existing law.

                       unfunded mandate statement

    Section 423 of the Congressional Budget & Impoundment 
Control Act requires a statement of whether the provisions of 
the reported bill include unfunded mandates; the bill does not 
contain any unfunded mandates.

     budget authority and congressional budget office cost estimate

    With respect to the requirement of clause 2(l)(3)(B) of 
rule XI of the House of Representatives and section 308(a) of 
the Congressional Budget Act of 1974 and with respect to 
requirements of clause 2(l)(3)(C) of rule XI of the House of 
Representatives and section 403 of the Congressional Budget Act 
of 1974, the Committee has received the following cost estimate 
for H.R. 1114 from the Director of the Congressional Budget 
Office:
                                     U.S. Congress,
                               Congressional Budget Office,
                                     Washington, DC, July 25, 1995.
Hon. William F. Goodling,
Chairman, Committee on Economic and Educational Opportunities, House of 
        Representatives, Washington, DC.
    Dear Mr. Chairman: The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) 
has reviewed H.R. 1114, a bill to provide authority for minors 
to load materials into balers and compactors, as ordered 
reported by the Committee on Economic and Educational 
Opportunities on July 20, 1995. CBO estimates that enactment of 
H.R. 1114 would have no significant effect on the federal 
budget and no impact on the budgets of state and local 
governments. Because enactment of H.R. 1114 would not affect 
direct spending or receipts, pay-as-you-go procedures would not 
apply.
    H.R. 1114 would allow minors under 18 years of age to load 
materials into balers and compactors, if these machines meet 
safety standards of the American National Standards Institute. 
Currently, the child labor protection provisions of the Fair 
Labor Standards Act restrict children from engaging in this 
type of activity. Were this bill to be enacted, the Department 
of Labor could enforce this new provision without any change in 
its current enforcement budget.
    If you wish further details on this estimate, we will be 
pleased to provide them. The CBO staff contact is Christina 
Hawley.
            Sincerely,
                                                   June E. O'Neill.

                             Rollcall Votes

Rollcall No. 1 (by Mr. Owens)

    Amendment to require the Secretary of Labor to certify to 
each House of the Congress, on or before September 30, 1996, 
that there is adequate funding for FY96 for the Wage and Hour 
Administration of the Department of Labor to administer the 
provisions of H.R. 1114, before the bill will take effect. 
Defeated by a vote of 14-17.

------------------------------------------------------------------------
                   Member                          Aye           No     
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Chairman Goodling...........................  ............            X 
Mr. Petri...................................  ............  ............
Mrs. Roukema................................  ............  ............
Mr. Gunderson...............................  ............  ............
Mr. Fawell..................................  ............            X 
Mr. Ballenger...............................  ............            X 
Mr. Barrett.................................  ............            X 
Mr. Cunningham..............................  ............            X 
Mr. Hoekstra................................  ............            X 
Mr. McKeon..................................  ............  ............
Mr. Castle..................................  ............            X 
Mrs. Meyers.................................  ............            X 
Mr. Johnson.................................  ............  ............
Mr. Talent..................................  ............            X 
Mr. Greenwood...............................  ............  ............
Mr. Hutchinson..............................  ............            X 
Mr. Knollenberg.............................  ............            X 
Mr. Riggs...................................  ............            X 
Mr. Graham..................................  ............  ............
Mr. Weldon..................................  ............            X 
Mr. Funderburk..............................  ............            X 
Mr. Souder..................................  ............            X 
Mr. McIntosh................................  ............            X 
Mr. Norwood.................................  ............            X 
Mr. Clay....................................            X   ............
Mr. Miller..................................  ............  ............
Mr. Kildee..................................            X   ............
Mr. Williams................................  ............  ............
Mr. Martinez................................            X   ............
Mr. Owens...................................            X   ............
Mr. Sawyer..................................            X   ............
Mr. Payne...................................  ............  ............
Mrs. Mink...................................            X   ............
Mr. Andrews.................................            X   ............
Mr. Reed....................................            X   ............
Mr. Roemer..................................            X   ............
Mr. Engel...................................  ............  ............
Mr. Becerra.................................            X   ............
Mr. Scott...................................            X   ............
Mr. Green...................................            X   ............
Ms. Woolsey.................................            X   ............
Mr. Romero-Barcelo..........................            X   ............
Mr. Reynolds................................  ............  ............
                                             ---------------------------
    Totals..................................           14            17 
------------------------------------------------------------------------

Rollcall No. 2 (by Mr. Petri)

    Motion to favorably report the bill with an amendment in 
the nature of a substitute to the House with the recommendation 
that the bill as amended do pass. Passed by a vote of 21-13.

------------------------------------------------------------------------
                   Member                          Aye           No     
------------------------------------------------------------------------
Chairman Goodling...........................            X   ............
Mr. Petri...................................  ............  ............
Mrs. Roukema................................  ............  ............
Mr. Gunderson...............................  ............  ............
Mr. Fawell..................................            X   ............
Mr. Ballenger...............................            X   ............
Mr. Barrett.................................            X   ............
Mr. Cunningham..............................            X   ............
Mr. Hoekstra................................            X   ............
Mr. McKeon..................................            X   ............
Mr. Castle..................................            X   ............
Mrs. Meyers.................................            X   ............
Mr. Johnson.................................  ............  ............
Mr. Talent..................................            X   ............
Mr. Greenwood...............................  ............  ............
Mr. Hutchinson..............................            X   ............
Mr. Knollenberg.............................            X   ............
Mr. Riggs...................................            X   ............
Mr. Graham..................................            X   ............
Mr. Weldon..................................            X   ............
Mr. Funderburk..............................            X   ............
Mr. Souder..................................            X   ............
Mr. McIntosh................................            X   ............
Mr. Norwood.................................            X   ............
Mr. Clay....................................  ............            X 
Mr. Miller..................................  ............  ............
Mr. Kildee..................................  ............            X 
Mr. Williams................................  ............  ............
Mr. Martinez................................            X   ............
Mr. Owens...................................  ............            X 
Mr. Sawyer..................................  ............            X 
Mr. Payne...................................  ............            X 
Mrs. Mink...................................  ............            X 
Mr. Andrews.................................            X   ............
Mr. Reed....................................  ............            X 
Mr. Roemer..................................  ............            X 
Mr. Engel...................................  ............  ............
Mr. Becerra.................................  ............            X 
Mr. Scott...................................  ............            X 
Mr. Green...................................  ............            X 
Ms. Woolsey.................................  ............            X 
Mr. Romero-Barcelo..........................  ............            X 
Mr. Reynolds................................  ............  ............
                                             ---------------------------
    Totals..................................           21            13 
------------------------------------------------------------------------

                             MINORITY VIEWS

Introduction
    Proponents of H.R. 1114 contend, ``what we need less of is 
a government that enforces regulations which don't enhance 
worker safety but cost small business money and kill jobs. What 
we need is a more common-sense approach to enforcing rules by 
the federal bureaucracy.'' \1\ Oddly then, H.R. 1114 needlessly 
jeopardizes the safety of working minors while imposing greater 
regulatory burdens on business and government alike.
    \1\ Statement of Hon. Thomas W. Ewing, ``Hearing on House 
Resolutions 1114, 1225, and 1783,'' before the Subcommittee on 
Workforce Protections of the Committee on Economic and Educational 
Opportunities, 104th Congress, 1st Sess., (July 11, 1995).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    H.R. 1114 provides that 16 and 17-year-old workers may load 
materials into cardboard balers and compactors so long as the 
equipment is safe for 16 and 17-year-olds to load and cannot be 
operated while being loaded. The legislation presumes that a 
baler or compactor which is maintained and operated in 
compliance with the latest American National Standards 
Institute (ANSI) standards applicable to such machines is 
otherwise safe for 16 and 17 year olds to load. H.R. 1114 is 
intended to overrule Hazardous Occupations Order Number 12 (HO 
12) which, in part, precludes minors, including any worker 
below age 18, from operating or assisting to operate cardboard 
balers and compactors. As defined by the Department of Labor, 
assisting to operate a baler or compactor includes placing 
materials into or removing them from the machine.
    Despite the significance of this proposal, including its 
increased regulatory burden on the Department of Labor, we are 
disappointed that the Republican majority chose not to afford 
the Department an opportunity to testify at the single hearing 
held on H.R. 1114.
H.R. 1114 Needlessly places minors at risk
    Balers and compactors are large and potentially dangerous 
machines. In both types of machines, material is fed into a 
baling or compacting chamber and a ram or plunger--a large 
steel plate--is then mechanically forced through the chamber, 
compressing or compacting the material. A compactor typically 
deposits the compressed material into a large bin. The bin is 
then removed, emptied and returned for reuse. A baler, usually 
a smaller machine than a compactor, ties or wraps the 
compressed material with a steel band or wire. The bale is then 
removed and disposed.
    Proponents of H.R. 1114 contend that there is nothing 
inherently dangerous in loading a bale or compactor so long as 
the machine is otherwise inoperable at the time that the 
loading occurs. We concur. The danger inherent in loading 
balers or compactors is not in loading the machine, per se, but 
in being in the vicinity of the machine when it is operating. 
HO 12, by precluding minors from being involved in the loading, 
operation, or unloading of balers or compactors, eliminates any 
occupational justification for the presence of minors while the 
machine is being operated.
    H.R. 1114, by permitting minors to load certain balers and 
compactors, provides a legal and occupational justification for 
minors to otherwise be present while a baler or compactor is 
being operated. The Department of Labor estimates that more 
than half of the balers and compactors in use today are not in 
compliance with the ANSI standards. Further, even newer 
machines that are manufactured in compliance with the ANSI may 
not be maintained or operated in a manner that ensures the 
machine remains in compliance with the ANSI standards each and 
every time it is operated. Accidents will continue to occur.
    The majority is apparently prepared to risk the life and 
limbs of young workers that the interlock devices required by 
the ANSI regulations will work in every case to prevent injury 
or death. Interlock devices are designed to ensure that 
machines cannot be operated when baler or compactor loading 
doors are open. Interlock devices are not fail-safe, however. 
On October 5, 1994 the Occupational Safety and Health 
Administration (OSHA) issued a serious violation citation to a 
supermarket in Ridgewood, New Jersey. The citation was issued 
in part because the store's ``baler ram continued to cooperate 
when protective interlock gate remained open on or about 9/14/
94.'' On November 11, 1994, a grocery market in Haledon, New 
Jersey was cited by OSHA, in part, because the ``interlock on 
door of garbage compactor was not functioning''.
    The inevitable consequence of increasing the instances of 
proximity of minors to these machines while they are in 
operation will be an increase of instances of serious injury 
and death to minors. If such accidents occur while the minor is 
loading the machine, the employer will have engaged in a prima 
facie violation of the child labor laws, as provided in H.R. 
1114. That, however, is likely to be a small consolation to the 
victim, and to his or her family.
    According to the Department of Labor, there were 6 
fatalities involving paper baling machines between 1993 and 
1995, including 2 cases where the victims fell into the 
compacting area of the machine while attempting to clear jams 
that occurred during the loading process. While we firmly 
believe that HO 12 has served to minimize instances of injury 
or death to minors, youths have been involved in accidents 
involving compactors and balers despite the regulation. As 
Representative Owens related at the sole hearing held on H.R. 
1114:

    A 16-year old lost the tip of his index finger while 
operating a box compactor on June 2, 1994, in Chippewa Falls, 
Wisconsin. Doctors were able, fortunately, to reattach the 
finger at the hospital. May 29, 1989, a 15-year-old clerk was 
loading boxes into a paper baler at the Hilltop Market in 
Seattle, Washington. When he turned around to see if there were 
anymore boxes to load, the safety gate came down and his arm 
became stuck in the machine. He tried to reach the switch with 
the other arm, but it also became caught in the machine. The 
minor suffered a broken arm and wrist and permanent disability 
in one arm. Finally, an 11-year-old was loading boxes in a 
paper baler at the Seatown Food Corporation, Bronx, New York, 
when his arm got caught in the baler and pulled his body up 
against the machine and crushed him. He died as a result of 
internal injuries.

    The accidents cited above occurred despite a regulation 
that removes any occupational incentive for minors to be 
present while a baler or compactor is being operated. Our 
primary concern regarding H.R. 1114 is that, by lawfully 
permitting 16- and 17-year-olds to be employed loading certain 
balers and compactors, the legislation encourages the presence 
of minors while such machines are being operated and, 
therefore, inevitably places them in harms-way. No convincing 
justification has been presented to the Committee for exposing 
minors to such risks.
    There is certainly no evidence that groceries are dependent 
upon the services of minors in order to load balers or 
compactors. According to the testimony of Ms. Lutz, two-thirds 
of all employees of food store employees are part-timers, of 
whom one quarter are under age 18. Stated more plainly, 
according to Ms. Lutz, only approximately one-sixth of all food 
store employees are under 18; approximately 83 percent are 18 
or older. There would seem to be no dearth of adult workers 
capable of loading, operating, and unloading balers and 
compactors.
    Witnesses testifying in support of H.R. 1114, including 
Representative Thomas W. Ewing, Representative Larry Combest, 
and Ms. Lutz (representing the Food Marketing Institute) stated 
that HO 12 has the effect of deterring grocery stores from 
hiring teenagers and that H.R. 1114 is necessary to promote 
employment opportunities for minors. Representative Ewing 
stated, ``* * * I have been trying to get the Labor Department 
to fix one small regulation, Hazardous Occupation Order Number 
12, which is causing grocery stores to avoid hiring teenagers 
because they can receive fines up to $10,000 for a single 
violation. Teenagers who are looking for summer jobs today are 
being turned away from grocery stores, which have traditionally 
hired a lot of teens to bag groceries and stock shelves.'' 
Representative Combest characterized HO 12 as ``a regulatory 
disincentive for hiring 16- and 17-year-old workers.'' Ms. Lutz 
was more specific:

    Our survey shows that HO 12 has had a significant impact on 
teenage employment. HO 12 has led grocers to curtail hiring 
opportunities for teenagers or to modify the scope of their 
work. Among all companies, 64.7 percent said HO 12 has caused 
them to take such actions.
    It is alarming that two-thirds of the grocers responding to 
FMI's survey said that HO 12 has a dampening effect on their 
hiring teenagers. Indeed, there are some operators who have a 
firm policy against hiring anyone under 18 because of the 
regulatory and bureaucratic nightmare they face. This deals a 
direct blow to the job opportunities for teenagers and is 
especially ironic in light of the current concerns about teen 
employment and in view of hundreds of millions of dollars spent 
to `create' summer jobs for teens.

    We note, however, that beyond the assertion there is 
absolutely no evidence that HO 12 is having any impact on the 
employment of minors by grocery stores. No evidence was 
provided to the Committee to indicate that there has been any 
diminution in the percentage of food store employees who are 
under 18. Further, the contention that HO 12 is discouraging 
the employment of minors is based on a seemingly ludicrous 
presumption: That it is impossible to prevent 16- and 17-year-
old stock clerks from loading balers or compactors.
    In fact, the standard practice in the industry is to have 
stock clerks, including those under age 18, take empty cartons 
to a designated stacking area. Another employee, an adult, is 
then responsible for loading and operating the baler or 
compactor. Thousands of stores across the country are able to 
operate on such a basis without running afoul of HO 12. There 
is no intrinsic reason why a 16- or 17-year-old should feel 
compelled to load a baler or compactor, especially if it is 
explained to the employee that not only are such duties beyond 
his or her responsibilities, but that it is also unlawful for 
the employee to engage in such activities.
    To the extent that anyone is having difficulty complying 
with HO 12 today, it would appear to be due to either a failure 
to adequately explain employment restrictions and the reasons 
for them to employees under age 18 or an indifference to the 
requirements of HO 12. That such employers will do better under 
the more onerous requirements of H.R. 1114, where 16- and 17-
year-olds are permitted to load balers and compactors only if 
the machine is manufactured, maintained, and operated in full 
compliance with ANSI standards, is unlikely.

H.R. 1114 Increases regulatory burdens

    The second reason proffered by proponents of H.R. 1114 for 
its enactment is to immunize industry from the unreasonable and 
costly enforcement of HO 12 by the Department of Labor. 
Ironically, H.R. 1114 will not provide the relief that the Food 
Marketing Institute seeks. Whereas HO 12 imposes a 
straightforward and easily understood requirement upon 
employers, the requirements imposed by H.R. 1114 are, at best, 
complex and easily breached. At worst, they are so imprecise 
and uncertain as to make compliance impossible to determine. As 
described by the bill's sponsor, Mr. Ewing, ``Teenagers would 
only be allowed to load machines which meet current safety 
standards set by the American National Standards Institute, 
which means that teenagers would still be prohibited from 
loading the outdated machines.'' (emphasis added.) Ms. Lutz, in 
responding to a question from Representative Woolsey, described 
the requirements of H.R. 1114 as follows, ``* * * and the 
balers that do not meet the current ANSI standards would fall 
under the same guidelines as currently exist for HO 12 * * *''.
    Though H.R. 1114 is generally understood as permitting 16- 
and 17-year-olds to load balers and compactors, in most 
instances the legislation unquestionably prohibits their use. 
As the majority notes, according to the best information 
available to the Committee, fewer than half of the balers and 
compactors in operation are in compliance with the standards. 
As described by the sponsors and principal proponents of the 
legislation, H.R. 1114 requires that a baler or compactor be in 
complete compliance with ANSI standards before a 16- or 17-
year-old may be employed to load the machine. If the machine is 
not operated and maintained in compliance with current ANSI 
standards, the use of minors to load the machine ``would fall 
under the same guidelines as currently exist for HO 12.'' In 
other words, the employer would be subject to a fine of up to 
$10,000 for any occasion in which a minor loaded a baler or 
compactor that was not in compliance with ANSI standards.
    H.R. 1114 effectively places employers in a more serious 
catch-22 than current law. Under the legislation, an employer 
may employ 16- and 17-year-olds to load balers and compactors 
without fear of being fined by the Department of Labor only if 
the employer is certain that its balers and compactors are in 
compliance with current ANSI standards and is certain that the 
Department of Labor and the courts will so concur. No employer, 
including employers who own new machines that were manufactured 
in compliance with ANSI standards, can safely make those 
assumptions.
    As the majority states, ANSI coordinates the development of 
voluntary standards. Because the ANSI standards are voluntary, 
they are, in some respects, broader and more proscriptive than 
standards that are likely to be issued by a Government agency. 
On the other hand, because legal liabilities are not directly 
dependent upon the degree of compliance with a voluntary 
standards, the ANSI standards are, in other respects, more 
vague and less precise than those typically issued by agencies.
    The ANSI standards as they relate to the modification of 
machines provide an example of the complexity faced by both 
those who will seek to enforce this legislation and those who 
will seek to comply with it. Current ANSI standards require 
that balers that have been modified since June, 1991, must have 
been modified in accordance with the standard, that the 
manufacturer must have been notified prior to the modification, 
and that the owner of the machine must have obtained written 
permission from the manufacturer to make the modification. 
Assuming an investigator from the Wage and Hour Division of the 
Department of Labor can recognize a machine that has been 
modified in the first instance, the employer must then be able 
to provide documentation demonstrating when the modification 
occurred and, if appropriate, proving that prior approval for 
the modification was obtained from the manufacturer. Though the 
intent of the requirement is to ensure that the modification 
does not adversely affect the safe operation of the machine, 
compliance with the ANSI standards is dependent upon the 
production of the appropriate paper documents rather than the 
effect on safety of the modification, per se. Regardless of the 
safety ramifications of the modification, if the appropriate 
paper documents cannot be provided, the employer is in 
violation of the ANSI standards and may be liable for a 
potential fine of up to $10,000 for each time a minor was used 
to load the machine.
    The ANSI standards also require that employers provide 
training to employees concerning the operation and maintenance 
of balers and compactors and that employers maintain inspection 
and maintenance records. The standards are silent, however, as 
to what constitutes appropriate training or how long inspection 
and maintenance records must be maintained. Again, the 
ramification for misinterpreting the requirements of the ANSI 
standards may be a $10,000 fine for each time a minor was 
employed to load the machine.
    H.R. 1114 also greatly increases the burdens on the 
Department of Labor at a time when the ability of the 
Department to meet that burden is being undermined. Rather than 
making the relatively simple determination of whether a minor 
has been employed to operate or assist in operating a baler or 
compactor, H.R. 1114 requires that the Department also 
determine whether the machine is in compliance with the complex 
and confusing requirements of the ANSI standards. The fact that 
this significantly more burdensome requirement is being placed 
on the Department at the same time that the Department is 
facing crippling cuts in its budget can only have unfortunate 
consequences for the minors that H.R. 1114 purportedly is 
designed to protect. Mr. Owens offered an amendment in 
Committee to address this problem. The amendment provided that 
before the provisions of H.R. 1114 may take effect, the 
Secretary of Labor would be required to certify to each House 
of Congress that there is adequate funding for the Wage and 
Hour Administration of the Department of Labor to administer 
H.R. 1114. The amendment was rejected 14-17 on a party-line 
vote.
    Finally, as the majority notes, when the Occupational 
Safety and Health Act was enacted in 1970, the legislation 
``directed the Department of Labor to adopt then-existing ANSI 
standards, rather than delay any activity until the agency 
promulgated occupational safety and health standards'' 
(emphasis added). The intent was to ensure that workers were 
immediately afforded protection rather than delay the 
imposition of health and safety standards until the Department 
of Labor could implement its own standards. Many of the 
standards that were incorporated imposed requirements on 
employers that were later found to be unreasonable.
    More importantly, in 1970, the Congress acted to require 
the adoption of standards developed by private associations to 
ensure immediate protection for workers while the Occupational 
Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) was getting off the 
ground. Ultimate regulatory authority is vested in OSHA. H.R. 
1114 differs significantly in that it vests, in perpetuity, in 
the ANSI authority to determine what constitutes a baler or 
compactor that is safe for minors to load. In effect, the 
legislation extends regulatory authority to a private 
organization and repeals the extensive safeguards the Congress 
has instituted to ensure that regulations are developed with 
full public input and without undue or improper influence. We 
note that this transfer of authority was done without affording 
representatives of ANSI the opportunity to testify on the 
legislation.

Conclusion

    On May 5, 1995, the National Institute for Occupational 
Safety and Health (NIOSH) issued a paper entitled ``Review of 
Safeguarding Technology Used on Paper Balers.'' At the request 
of the Administrator of the Department of Labor's Wage and Hour 
Administration, NOISH reviewed ``whether minors under 18 years 
of age can safely operate paper balers.'' NIOSH issued the 
following recommendation:

    Based on our review of surveillance data and this study of 
paper baler safeguarding technology, NIOSH believes that minors 
under the age of 18 cannot safely operate paper balers for the 
following reasons:
    First, there are paper balers in the field (both newer and 
older models) that we did not consider safe because of either 
the type and location of the interlock or because of a gap 
allowing manual entry into the baling compartment. NIOSH 
believes that additional criteria related to interlock location 
(which go beyond the ANSI Z245.5 standard) need to be 
considered for assessing adequate safeguarding related to paper 
baler operation. In addition, it is unclear how compliance with 
the existing voluntary ANSI standard for guarding could be 
assessed and enforced by the Wage and Hour Division.
    Second, there are other important factors needed to ensure 
worker safety--namely, periodic equipment inspection and 
maintenance to ensure that the safeguarding continues to 
function as intended and adequate worker training and 
supervision. Of particular concern are older machines. It is 
not known how many old paper balers are currently in use and 
how they could be retrofitted with appropriate safeguard 
equipment.
    Based on this NIOSH review, which demonstrates the 
potential for serious injury and death, NIOSH recommends that 
those parts of the current Hazardous Occupations Order (HO-12) 
from the Fair Labor Standards Act that relate to minors working 
at paper balers be maintained.
    One of the principal purposes of our child labor laws is to 
ensure that young people are not exposed to employment 
conditions that pose the risk of serious injury or death. In 
addition to increasing the regulatory burdens faced by 
employers, H.R. 1114 needlessly subjects our Nation's young to 
undue risk.

                                   William L. Clay.
                                   Dale E. Kildee.
                                   Tom Sawyer.
                                   Patsy T. Mink.
                                   Jack Reed.
                                   Eliot L. Engel.
                                   Bobby Scott.
                                   Lynn Woolsey.
                                   Mel Reynolds.
                                   George Miller.
                                   Pat Williams.
                                   Major R. Owens.
                                   Donald M. Payne.
                                   Xavier Becerra.
                                   Gene Green.
                                   Carlos Romero-Barcelo.