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Interns a source of free labor? Not likely!

April 30, 2010 by Kathryn Carlson

Businesses looking to save some money and complete a project often turn to interns. In today's economy recruiters and hiring managers may also get  a call from a job seeker asking to "intern for free" to "learn about your business".  Intern however is not a synonym for free...

Posted in: DOL, HR: Industry Updates Tags: Department of Labor, HR best practice, Wage and Hour Read More

Contractor or Employee? Misclassification of employees key enforcement issue in 2010

April 29, 2010 by Kathryn Carlson

The Department of Labor (DOL) announced that $12 million of its 2011 budget will go towards increasing enforcement of wage and overtime laws involving misclassification of employees. The U.S. Secretary of Labor Hilda L. Solis addressed the need to "secure minimum and overt...

Posted in: HR: Industry Updates Tags: Department of Labor, HR best practice, HR compliance, independent contractors, IRS, Wage and Hour Read More

New Underground Storage Tank Operator Training Requirements

April 29, 2010 by Chuck Elliott

The US Energy Policy Act requires all States that receive federal grant money for their UST programs to ensure that all operators of UST systems demonstrate competency on how to comply with UST rules so environmental releases can be prevented. These new rules have created a t...

Posted in: Environment: Industry Updates, EPA, Training: Industry Updates Tags: EPA, tanks, training Read More

OSHA in the news

April 29, 2010

I just posted this blog yesterday about OSHA and then --coincidentally-- ABC World News with  Diane Sawyer and Nightline broadcasted an interview last night with OSHA director Dr. David Michaels , saying "I think there are a lot of irresponsible employers who don't ensure ...

Posted in: OSHA, Safety: Industry Updates Tags: Investigation, OSHA, workplace injuries Read More

OSHA fine amounts increasing?

April 28, 2010

Tire Review that OSHA fined a Toledo dealer $177,800 as the result of an October 2009 accident in which four employees were injured. OSHA cited the dealer for three violations of worker safety regulations after investigating the accident. The employees suffered injuries wh...

Posted in: Citations, OSHA Tags: DOT compliance, hazard communication, Investigation, OSHA, personal protective equipment, violations Read More

Want to build a strong safety culture? Why not start with safety glasses?

April 15, 2010

I often talk with folks who are in charge of a safety program at a facility and really don't know where to start. I just read an interesting article in OH&S about building safety culture by starting with your safety eye wear policy. Even though the study this article is bas...

Posted in: Safety Culture, Safety: Industry Updates Tags: OSHA, personal protective equipment Read More

HIRE Act Forms Now Available (Claim $1000 per new hire)

April 14, 2010 by Kathryn Carlson

Ready to start hiring?  Don't forget to claim your tax credits for each new hire who has been unemployed for at least 60 days. The IRS has released the new W-11  form used by employees to certify eligibility. To claim the HIRE Act tax credit employers will also have to submi...

Posted in: HR: Industry Updates Tags: form 941, HIRE Act, HR best practice, IRS, Tax Credit Read More


April 13, 2010 by Eric Schmitz

I was just reviewing an article on how the Federal government audited the Energy Star program and found that it suffered from a common trend these days referred to as “green-washing”. “Green-washing” is where a corporation represents its products as being environmentally frie...

Posted in: Environment: Industry Updates, Safety Culture Tags: Green Read More

The Platinum Rule for Workforce Management and Human Resources

April 09, 2010 by Kathryn Carlson

As I look the list of recent EEOC settlements for both small businesses and large international companies, law firms (they really should have known better) to manufacturing companies, I am struck by one simple fact. ALL of these lawsuits and settlements could have been av...

Posted in: HR: Industry Updates Tags: EEOC, employee morale, employment discrimination, HR best practice, litigation Read More

Halogenated Solvent Cleaning Rule - How Does it impact me?

April 09, 2010

The Federal Halogenated Solvent Cleaning Rule compliance deadline is coming up on May 3, 2010. I’ve heard of some mis-information among clients using parts washers, and an incorrect interpretation that all parts washers now have to be aqueous. In fact, I hear there is a waste...

Posted in: Environment: Industry Updates, EPA Read More