NACD NewsBrief
Jul. 31, 2012

Legislative Update: Senate committee approves Safe Chemicals Act

The Senate Environment and Public Works Committee has approved S. 847, the Safe Chemicals Act, on a party-line vote of 10-8. This legislation would reform the Toxic Substances Control Act by resetting the TSCA inventory, requiring the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to batch chemicals into groups and evaluate them in order of risk priority based on existing information, and requiring chemical manufacturers and processors to provide additional information to EPA. Given the controversial nature of S. 847 and the limited time remaining on the legislative calendar for 2012, the outlook for Senate floor consideration of the bill is questionable.More

Legislative Update: House passes regulatory reform legislation

The U.S. House of Representatives has passed H.R. 4078, the Red Tape Reduction and Small Business Jobs Creation Act, by a vote of 245-172. NACD supports this legislation, which would prohibit agencies from issuing the most costly and significant rules until the unemployment rate drops to 6 percent or less, impose transparency on the "sue and settle" process used by agencies and environmental groups to circumvent the rulemaking process, prohibit agencies from proposing or finalizing major midnight regulations in the lame-duck portion of a presidential administration, and streamline the federal permitting process.More

Regulatory Update: DHS withdraws Personnel Surety Proposal, testifies at House hearing

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security has withdrawn its Chemical Facility Anti-Terrorism Standards Personal Surety Program. DHS developed the PSP as a way to implement CFATS Risk Based Performance Standard 12. The PSP would have required each CFATS-regulated facility to submit to DHS personally-identifying information regarding individuals seeking access to restricted areas and critical assets at the facility. DHS would then arrange for these individuals to be checked against the Federal Bureau of Investigation's classified Terrorist Screening Database. Since DHS first proposed the PSP, industry has raised concerns that the program was too prescriptive and duplicative of other established credentialing methods.More

Legislative Update: NACD calls on Congress to extend all expiring tax rates

NACD joined dozens of other pro-business trade associations last week in sending a letter to all members of the U.S. Senate asking them to extend all of the expiring tax rates for one year and to provide for expedited consideration of comprehensive tax code reform in early 2013.More

Regulatory Update: New Hazardous Materials Safety Permit program brochure now available

An updated version of the Hazardous Materials Safety Permit program brochure is now available on the FMCSA website. This brochure reflects the latest changes to the HMSP program brought about by a June 27 Federal Register notice that amended certain administrative procedures relevant to the program.More

Regulatory Update: EPA issues more Significant New Use Rules

On July 23, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency issued significant new use rules (SNURs) under the Toxic Substances Control Act for the chemical substances rutile, tin zinc, calcium-doped (CAS No. 389623-01-2) and rutile, tin zinc, sodium-doped (CAS No. 389623-07-8) which were the subject of premanufacture notices (PMNs P-06-36 and P-06-37) and a TSCA consent order issued by the agency.More

EPA fines violators for failure to report chemical data
Environmental Protection
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has issued complaints seeking civil penalties against three companies for alleged violations of the reporting and record keeping requirements under the Toxic Substances Control Act. The alleged violations involved the companies' failure to comply with EPA's TSCA section 8 Inventory Update Reporting regulations, which require companies to submit accurate data about the production and use of chemical substances manufactured or imported during a calendar year.More

Railroads could face more regulation
Dow Jones Newswires via Fox Business
A surge in freight-rail traffic since 2004, combined with price increases and buoyant earnings reported by railroad operators, have sparked substantial tension between the railroads and big shippers in the chemicals sector and elsewhere, fueling calls for some re-regulation of a sector liberalized in 1980. Now, top U.S. freight railroads have been on the losing end of a pair of recent regulatory and court moves regarding competitive pricing and service levels, raising the specter of renewed constraints.More

California releases draft rules to reduce chemicals of concern in consumer products
Bloomberg BNA
California has released a long-awaited formal draft of regulations designed to spur manufacturers to identify safe substitutes for chemicals of concern found in consumer products.More

Chemical activity barometer flat after declining 3 consecutive months
Bulk Transporter
The American Chemistry Council has released the second monthly report of its Chemical Activity Barometer, a new leading macroeconomic indicator. The July CAB was flat after declining three consecutive months, historically a sign of slowing economic activity.More