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Bill could stop US takeover of Arizona construction division

PHOENIX -- The Arizona Senate has unanimously approved a bill lawmakers hope will avert a federal takeover of the state's construction safety standards division.

Senate Bill 1307 was approved by the House last week and by the Senate on Wednesday. It will now go to the governor's desk.

Arizona has its own Occupational Safety and Health Administration that must comply with minimum federal requirements.

Legislation in 2012 changed Arizona's safety standards so that conventional precautions would have to be taken if someone was working 15 feet above ground or higher. Federal standards require the precautions at 6 feet above ground.

The federal agency has threatened to take over inspections unless the state makes changes.

The bill would revoke that 2012 legislation but only if the federal agency ultimately deems Arizona's standards inefficient.

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