The Trump Administration has announced its selection of Wayne Palmer to serve as acting assistant secretary for MSHA. Palmer has been serving as the Trump Administration’s chief of staff of the Department of Labor (DOL), and will be replaced there by Nicholas Geale, DOL’s solicitor. Earlier in his career, Palmer served as chief of staff for then-Senator Rick Santorum (R-PA). Because the temporary appointment of Palmer does not require Senate confirmation, the move enables DOL to move expeditiously to provide senior political leadership at MSHA.
It is widely believed that, in September, the Administration will announce its intent to nominate an individual to serve as a permanent Trump appointee to head MSHA. That confirmation process should last well into Fall, if not beyond. NSSGA continues to promote the merits of an individual with aggregates industry experience spearheading the agency’s work.