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Office of the Revisor of Statutes

Key: (1) language to be deleted (2) new language

  

                         Laws of Minnesota 1987 

                        CHAPTER 46-H.F.No. 1049 
           An act relating to labor; regulating the 
          administration of the occupational safety and health 
          act; clarifying employee rights to sue; amending 
          Minnesota Statutes 1986, sections 182.659, 
          subdivisions 6 and 8; 182.661, by adding a 
          subdivision; 182.666, subdivisions 1, 2, 4, 5, and 6; 
          and 182.669, subdivision 1.  
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MINNESOTA: 
    Section 1.  Minnesota Statutes 1986, section 182.659, 
subdivision 6, is amended to read:  
    Subd. 6.  Upon the refusal or anticipated refusal, based on 
an employer's refusal to permit entrance on a prior occasion, of 
an owner, operator, or agent in charge to permit entry as 
specified in this chapter 732, the commissioner may apply for an 
order in the district court in the county in which entry was 
refused a workplace is located, which compels the employer to 
permit the commissioner to enter and inspect the place of 
employment workplace.  
    Sec. 2.  Minnesota Statutes 1986, section 182.659, 
subdivision 8, is amended to read:  
    Subd. 8.  Neither the commissioner nor any employee of the 
department, including those employees of the department of 
health providing services to the department of labor and 
industry, pursuant to section 182.67, subdivision 1, is subject 
to subpoena for purposes of inquiry into any occupational safety 
and health inspection except in enforcement proceedings brought 
under this chapter.  All written information, documentation and 
reports gathered or prepared by the department pursuant to an 
occupational safety and health inspection are public information 
once the departmental inspection file is closed.  
    Sec. 3. Minnesota Statutes 1986, section 182.661, is 
amended by adding a subdivision to read: 
    Subd. 3a.  As prescribed in rules issued by the board, each 
notice of intent to contest the citation, proposed assessment of 
penalty, or period of time fixed in the citation for correction 
of the violation shall be prominently posted at or near each 
place a violation referred to in the citation occurred or served 
on affected employers, employees, and employee representatives.  
If the contesting employer, employee, or employee representation 
fails to post or serve the notice of intent to contest the 
citation, the proposed assessment of penalty, or the period of 
time fixed for correction of the violation within the time 
prescribed in rules issued by the board, the board may render a 
default judgment in favor of the commissioner. 
    Sec. 4.  Minnesota Statutes 1986, section 182.666, 
subdivision 1, is amended to read:  
    Subdivision 1.  Any employer who willfully or repeatedly 
violates the requirements of section 182.653, or any standard, 
rule, or order promulgated under the authority of the 
commissioner as provided in this chapter, may be assessed a fine 
not to exceed $10,000 for each violation. 
    Sec. 5.  Minnesota Statutes 1986, section 182.666, 
subdivision 2, is amended to read:  
    Subd. 2.  Any employer who has received a citation for a 
serious violation of its duties under section 182.653, or any 
standard, rule, or order promulgated under the authority of the 
commissioner as provided in this chapter, shall be assessed a 
fine not to exceed $1,000 for each such violation.  
    Sec. 6.  Minnesota Statutes 1986, section 182.666, 
subdivision 4, is amended to read:  
    Subd. 4.  Any employer who fails to correct a violation for 
which a citation has been issued under section 182.66 within the 
period permitted for its correction, which period shall not 
begin to run until the date of the final order of 
the commissioner board in the case of any review proceedings 
under this chapter initiated by the employer in good faith and 
not solely for delay or avoidance of penalties, may be assessed 
a fine of not more than $1,000 for each day during which such 
failure or violation continues.  
    Sec. 7.  Minnesota Statutes 1986, section 182.666, 
subdivision 5, is amended to read:  
    Subd. 5.  Any employer who violates any of the posting 
requirements, as prescribed under this chapter, except those 
prescribed under section 182.661, subdivision 3a, shall be 
assessed a fine of up to $1,000 for each violation.  
    Sec. 8.  Minnesota Statutes 1986, section 182.666, 
subdivision 6, is amended to read:  
    Subd. 6.  Only the commissioner shall have authority to 
assess all proposed fines provided in this section, giving due 
consideration to the appropriateness of the fine with respect to 
the size of the business of the employer, the gravity of the 
violation, the good faith of the employer, and the history of 
previous violations.  
    Sec. 9.  Minnesota Statutes 1986, section 182.669, 
subdivision 1, is amended to read:  
    Subdivision 1.  Any employee believed to have been 
discharged or otherwise discriminated against by any person 
because such employee has exercised any right authorized under 
the provisions of sections 182.65 to 182.674, may, within 30 
days after such alleged discrimination occurs, file a complaint 
with the commissioner alleging the discriminatory act.  Upon 
receipt of such complaint, the commissioner shall cause such 
investigation to be made as the commissioner deems appropriate.  
If upon such investigation the commissioner determines that a 
discriminatory act was committed against an employee the 
commissioner shall refer the matter to the office of 
administrative hearings for a hearing before an administrative 
law judge pursuant to the provisions of chapter 14.  The 
administrative law judge may order rehiring of the employee, 
reinstatement of the employee's former position, fringe 
benefits, seniority rights, back pay, recovery of compensatory 
damages, and reasonable attorney fees, or other appropriate 
relief.  Nothing in this section precludes An employee from 
bringing an may bring a private action in the district court for 
relief under this section or any other provision of law. 
    Approved April 30, 1987