SB 193 is dead for this year!

By CMTA Staff

Capitol Update, Aug. 29, 2013 Share this on FacebookTweet thisEmail this to a friend

Senator William Monning (D-Carmel) has announced that his SB 193, Hazard Evaluation System and Information Service, will be a two year bill.

Existing law requires the Department of Industrial Relations, with the State Department of Public Health, to establish a repository of current data on toxic materials and harmful physical agents in use or potentially in use in places of employment in the state. That repository is known as the Hazard Evaluation System and Information Service (HESIS).

This bill would have required chemical manufacturers, formulators, suppliers, distributors or importers of every product destined for a California workplace to release information to HESIS upon written request. The information, a significant amount of which is proprietary, includes the names and addresses of customers who have purchased specified chemicals or commercial products containing those chemicals, the quantities and dates of shipments, and the proportion of a specified chemical within a mixture.

The intent is honorable: to enable the distribution of HESIS health hazards alerts directly to a manufacturer’s customer list in emergencies that render the current hazard communication laws insufficient.  However, SB 193 provides significant new authority to compel businesses to release highly sensitive information. The potential application of this authority as written could interfere with the comprehensive hazard communication system already required under existing law. If the State is going to require a private company to turn over sensitive customer information, it should at least be required to justify this request based on very clear criteria and a thoroughly defined process that fits well within workplace safety protocols established under federal and state law.

Undoubtedly during the interim, there will be meetings with the author centered around three industry-proposed amendments that would address our concerns and at the same time not inhibit the proponents from achieving their stated objective:

  • Director of Department of Industrial Relations involvement,
  • Establish a reasonable trigger threshold, and
  • Confidential business information protections.
Read more Environmental Impacts articles

Capitol updates archive 989898989