Sarah, over at Ohana Mama Blog informed me a few weeks ago about The Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act and how it will now require 3rd party testing on all products. This means all small business, WAHM business, basically everyone with a product and limited budget are going to be in big trouble. The testing is expensive and by putting these small companies out of business, that's going to greatly decrease our options of where we can spend $$.
So I sent both my senator and congress man an email outlining my concerns and offering a few ways that these new laws could be revised so as not to hurt the little man. His response was less than adequate. Here it is:
Dear Mrs. Shields:
Thank you for contacting me regarding the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC). I appreciate hearing from you and share your concerns.
In July, Congress passed the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act. The measure, which became law on August 14, 2008, includes a number of provisions I authored to strengthen the Consumer Product Safety Commission's ability to protect American consumers.
The law authorizes a significant funding increase for the CPSC to hire additional inspectors and upgrade its testing facilities. In addition, the measure directs the CPSC to establish a searchable, online consumer product safety database to make it easier to find information about recalls and product safety concerns.
The Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act also requires that all products marketed for young children be certified as safe by third-party inspectors. Under the new law, product testing may be performed by a company-owned lab only if the lab is CPSC certified, appropriately insulated from the rest of the company's operations, and can provide equal or greater consumer protection than what would be provided by available third-party labs.
The measure bans the use of lead and toxic phthalates in products manufactured for children aged 12 and younger and requires retailers to label children's products with tracking information that would aid identification in the event of a recall. Finally, the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act increases penalties for companies that violate product safety laws.
In 2007, more than 40 million products regulated by the CPSC were recalled, including many popular brands of toys and other children's products. The recalls hurt consumer confidence and shed light on the CPSC's inability to adequately protect consumer safety.
I am pleased that Congress voted to pass this much needed legislation. The Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act will provide the CPSC with the resources and authority it needs to better protect American consumers. I will continue to work to provide the CPSC with the resources it needs to keep the American people safe.
Thank you again for your message. Please feel free to keep in touch.
Richard J. Durbin
United States Senator