Legislative Update for Ceramic and Glass Decorating
SGCDpro Legislative and Regulatory Liaison Sandra Spence provides an update of recent events.
Obama Signs Chemical Safety Act into Law
President Obama signed the Frank R. Lautenberg Chemical Safety for the 21st Century Act on June 22, marking the first major overhaul of the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) in 40 years. The president called the legislation “proof that Washington can function despite intense polarization.” He praised both chemicals industry groups and environmentalists for achieving consensus despite their usual differences of opinion.
Various news reports suggest the law will clear up a hodgepodge of state rules, allowing the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to override state regulations on chemicals. However, a comprehensive special report on the legislation compiled and published online by Bloomberg BNA (Bureau of National Affairs) suggests the state pre-emption issue has been compromised. According to the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM), the chemical reviews could take years. NAM added that chemical producers will be required to contribute $25 million in annual fees, or 25% of the estimated cost, for the EPA reviews, in addition to having to pay for any reviews they request from the agency. SGCDpro will report on this issue more comprehensively as details emerge.
Prop 65 Listing of BPA Creates Confusion
On May 11, 2016, the California law requiring warning labels for all exposures to bisphenol A (BPA) took effect. The listing of BPA has caused mass confusion among decorators and other manufacturers and importers. The state’s Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA) added BPA to its Proposition 65 list of chemicals known to cause reproductive toxicity last year.
We have learned that BPA is an ingredient in some coatings used on glass and ceramic ware, and members have been contacting SGCDpro to explore their options. A complex procedure is in place to specify a “safe harbor level” or “maximum allowable daily level” (MADL) for exposure to Prop 65 chemicals, but that level has not been established for BPA. SGCDpro recommends checking with suppliers regarding the presence of BPA and labeling decorated products accordingly.
Judge Rules for Defendant in Proposition 65 Case
In a case that went to trial in California in March, Aloe Vera successfully argued that certain products, for which it had received a Proposition 65 notice, fell within the safe harbor limits established for such products. Judgement was entered in its favor on July 18.
Whiskey Glasses Recalled
The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission has recalled whiskey glasses sold as part of a set including chilling stones. The August 10 recall involves Dennis East International Whiskey Glass and Stone Sets. The sets include a 16-oz clear glass, four gray chilling stones and a black cloth bag with SKU 30335. Reports of unexpected breakage during normal usage spurred the recall. SGCDpro urges companies importing glassware to ensure that the products comply with all safety standards. Details are available at www.sgcd.org.
Deco ’17 Returns to Pittsburgh
SGCDpro’s Annual Meeting and Conference will return to Pittsburgh, birthplace of the organization, in April 2017. The event will feature production, technical, and marketing seminars, as well as an exposition and a tour of the Pittsburgh Glass Center. Details will be posted soon at www.sgcd.org.