Response from Senator Dianne Feinstein

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Original Post

For what it's worth, here is my response. It's a lot better than what I got from Barbara Boxer, which was only a two-liner thanking me for the letter.


Dear ---:

Thank you very much for your letter expressing concern about the implementation of the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act of 2008 (Public Law 110-314). I understand the challenges facing certain businesses and organizations that must comply with the law's requirements and welcome the opportunity to respond to your concerns.

As you know, on August 14, 2008, the President signed the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act of 2008 into law. This legislation will modernize and strengthen the Consumer Products Safety Commission (CPSC) to enable the agency to aggressively pursue its mission of protecting consumers and families through the oversight of more than 15,000 products sold in the United States.

Included in this important bill are requirements intended to limit the exposure of children to lead and phthalates in toys. Specifically, beginning February 10, 2008, 180 days after the bill's enactment, children's products containing more than 600 parts per million of lead will be banned from production and sale. Within three years, toys containing more than 100 parts per million will also be prohibited. The bill will also ban some phthalates from toys and childcare articles for children under the age of three. To help enforce these requirements, manufacturers will be required to have new children's products tested for these chemicals by a certified third-party.

I recognize that the compliance dates and certification requirements of this legislation may pose certain challenges to some businesses, organizations, and charities that are affected by the law. You may be interested to learn that the CPSC has announced that sellers of used children's products, such as thrift stores, will not be required to certify that their products meet the new standards.

Additionally, retailers will not be required to test products that are already in their inventory. However, they will not be allowed to sell those that exceed the lead and phthalate limits. Therefore, the CPSC suggests that retailers should avoid selling products that are likely to have a high lead content, unless testing or other information would prove that their products are compliant. This guidance is intended to allow retailers to sell children's products already in their inventory that would clearly not violate the new limits. The CSPC continues to publish additional guidance to assist in this process. For more detailed information, please visit the CPSC website at www.cpsc.gov/about/cpsia/cpsia.html.

Please know that I am following the CPSC's implementation of the standards closely. I appreciate your input regarding this issue and will be sure to keep your thoughts in mind should the Senate take additional action regarding these matters.

Again, thank you for writing. If you have any further questions or comments, please do not hesitate to contact my Washington, D.C. office at (202) 224-3841. Best regards.


Sincerely yours,
Dianne Feinstein
United States Senator

Posted at 2:22pm Jan 29, 2009 EST

Responses

LaurieRyan says

ok her third to the last paragraph not to pick this apart though. ratailers will not be required to test products that are already in their inventory. but they will not be allowed to sell those that exceed the lead levels. if they aren't tested how do they know if they exceed the levels or not? is this typical DC doubles speak?

Posted at 2:27pm Jan 29, 2009 EST

I just got the same BS letter...

Posted at 2:27pm Jan 29, 2009 EST

dollovelyinc avatar
dollovelyinc says

LOOK...I got the SAME one!
I think they finally sobered up from the inaugural parties and are back in the office...lol
************************************

Dear Ms. ****:

Thank you very much for your letter expressing concern about the implementation of the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act of 2008 (Public Law 110-314). I understand the challenges facing certain businesses and organizations that must comply with the law's requirements and welcome the opportunity to respond to your concerns.

As you know, on August 14, 2008, the President signed the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act of 2008 into law. This legislation will modernize and strengthen the Consumer Products Safety Commission (CPSC) to enable the agency to aggressively pursue its mission of protecting consumers and families through the oversight of more than 15,000 products sold in the United States.

Included in this important bill are requirements intended to limit the exposure of children to lead and phthalates in toys. Specifically, beginning February 10, 2008, 180 days after the bill's enactment, children's products containing more than 600 parts per million of lead will be banned from production and sale. Within three years, toys containing more than 100 parts per million will also be prohibited. The bill will also ban some phthalates from toys and childcare articles for children under the age of three. To help enforce these requirements, manufacturers will be required to have new children's products tested for these chemicals by a certified third-party.

I recognize that the compliance dates and certification requirements of this legislation may pose certain challenges to some businesses, organizations, and charities that are affected by the law. You may be interested to learn that the CPSC has announced that sellers of used children's products, such as thrift stores, will not be required to certify that their products meet the new standards.

Additionally, retailers will not be required to test products that are already in their inventory. However, they will not be allowed to sell those that exceed the lead and phthalate limits. Therefore, the CPSC suggests that retailers should avoid selling products that are likely to have a high lead content, unless testing or other information would prove that their products are compliant. This guidance is intended to allow retailers to sell children's products already in their inventory that would clearly not violate the new limits. The CSPC continues to publish additional guidance to assist in this process. For more detailed information, please visit the CPSC website at www.cpsc.gov/about/cpsia/cpsia.html.

Please know that I am following the CPSC's implementation of the standards closely. I appreciate your input regarding this issue and will be sure to keep your thoughts in mind should the Senate take additional action regarding these matters.

Again, thank you for writing. If you have any further questions or comments, please do not hesitate to contact my Washington, D.C. office at (202) 224-3841. Best regards.

Sincerely yours,

Dianne Feinstein
United States Senator

Posted at 2:28pm Jan 29, 2009 EST

LaurieRyan says

Yeh I noticed it looked quite similar to the others that were posted here but did you notice the one paragraph where they say one thing but then say another.

Posted at 2:29pm Jan 29, 2009 EST

<<Additionally, retailers will not be required to test products that are already in their inventory. However, they will not be allowed to sell those that exceed the lead and phthalate limits. Therefore, the CPSC suggests that retailers should avoid selling products that are likely to have a high lead content, unless testing or other information would prove that their products are compliant. This guidance is intended to allow retailers to sell children's products already in their inventory that would clearly not violate the new limits. >>

Does this mean we can keep selling the items that are already in our inventories? How do we prove when it entered our inventory? For example, I have children's items I have not listed? Maybe I should go ahead and list them? Did not want to put them up and then have to take them down.

Posted at 2:33pm Jan 29, 2009 EST

FRANCISBEL says

many persons have the same letter.........

Posted at 2:33pm Jan 29, 2009 EST

gotta love a vague form letter! :/

Posted at 2:36pm Jan 29, 2009 EST

LaurieRyan says

that is the paragraph I was talking about it says you don't have to test yet you won't be allowed to sell items high in lead. well if they weren't tested how would you know???????????????????

Posted at 2:37pm Jan 29, 2009 EST

It means you can sell it, but you will still be liable if it causes harm to someone. So you'd better be sure it's safe. Same thing applies to thrift stores--many are closing because they don't want to take that chance.

But, I'd like an answer to the question TheGarmentFactory asked:

Does this mean we can keep selling the items that are already in our inventories? How do we prove when it entered our inventory? For example, I have children's items I have not listed? Maybe I should go ahead and list them? Did not want to put them up and then have to take them down.

Posted at 2:50pm Jan 29, 2009 EST