Last night, the Commission voted 4-1 to extend the stay of enforcement on testing and certification to the lead content standard until December 31, 2011. I am pleased that the Commissioners were willing to compromise on this extension.
While I welcome this decision, I continue to believe that the stay of enforcement should remain in place until one year after the finalization of the Commission’s rulemaking on both Testing and Labeling Pertaining to Product Certification and Conditions and Requirements for Testing Component Parts of Consumer Products. After all, the Commission has broadcast to the regulated community since 2009 its commitment to allow component parts testing and certification to become a viable compliance alternative for manufacturers before third party testing and certification for lead content in most children’s products becomes mandatory.
Over the past several weeks, large and small businesses throughout the country who would have been affected by this decision, have been in contact with my office urging a stay of this testing requirement, particularly since the Commission’s testing regulations have not been finalized. In the absence of those final rules, component suppliers are refusing to test altogether or are refusing to supply certifications. In addition, certifications are unavailable from the retail outlets where many small manufacturers obtain component parts.
I believe that third party testing imposes a financial burden that many manufacturers, and particularly small ones, may never be able to bear. But if there is any hope for their survival, it is essential that the stay not be lifted before there is at least an opportunity for certified component parts to form the basis for the final product certifications of small manufacturers.
If you are interested in learning more about the effects of this decision, please read my official statement for more information.
Please know how much I appreciate all the feedback and information that has been provided to my office over the past few weeks on this topic. This decision was an important victory for businesses both large and small throughout the country. I recognize that this could not have been achieved without your input. As always, if you have any questions or comments, please do not hesitate to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
3 months ago