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US Congress hears constitutional experts on TSCA preemption

July 18, 2014

No mandate in Constitution, say witnesses
14 July 2014 / United States

Nothing in the US Constitution mandates the preemption of state chemical regulations that are more stringent than federal laws, the House Subcommittee on Environment and the Economy heard last week.

“Absolutely not,” said Rena Steinzor, professor of the University of Maryland School of Law, when asked at a hearing by Ranking Member Paul Tonko (Democrat-New York) whether the Commerce Clause, or any another other constitutional provision, requires the state preemption proposed in the Chemicals in Commerce Act(CICA).

Partly because of its preemption provisions the CICA, the draft bill to reform the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA), introduced by Subcommittee Chairman John Shimkus (Republican Illinois) in February, has met with opposition from Democrats, NGOs and states’ advocates (CW 19 March 2014).

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