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Regulatory Update: NACD opposes DOT special permit user fees
NACD
NACD recently joined with 32 other organizations in sending letters to key members of Congress expressing opposition to a proposal in President Barack Obama's fiscal year 2014 budget to impose substantial user fees on applications for Department of Transportation Special Permits. This fee proposal would impact applications for new Special Permits as well as requests for renewal and party-to status. The charges would range from $700 to $3,000 per application. The proposed charges are identical to those included in the administration's fiscal year 2013 budget proposal. Among the points raised by NACD and the others in the letter are that the fees are excessive and would be used to underwrite the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration's general fund, the fact that no death has been attributed to DOT Special Permits since recordkeeping began, and that the fees would be particularly burdensome on small businesses.
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Regulatory Update: TSA removes specific fee amounts for HME and TWIC applications
On April 25, the Transportation Security Administration published a final rule in the Federal Register to remove specific fee amounts from regulations regarding security threat assessments and credentialing for Hazardous Materials Endorsements and Transportation Worker Identification Credentials. These provisions include State collection of the HME fee, TSA collection of the HME fee, and collection of the TWIC fee. TSA is removing the specific fee references in order to have the flexibility to increase or lower fees as necessary to meet the statutory obligation to recover its costs. Current fee amounts will remain unchanged until any future revisions to fee schedules are published in the Federal Register. This final rule will take effect on May 28, 2013. Click here for a copy of the rule.
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Fly-In Attendees: Prepare for success on the Hill — Webinar tomorrow
The NACD Government Advocacy Committee is hosting an attendees-only webinar prior to the Washington Fly-In tomorrow, May 1, at 12:00 p.m. EDT. Hosted by NACD's Government Advocacy Chairman Steve Seeler, we will discuss practical information you need to know to prepare for a successful day on the Hill, as well as the important key issues you will discuss in your meetings on May 9. Click here to register. This webinar will last approximately one hour, including time for questions. If you are attending the Fly-In, it is strongly encouraged you sign up for this webinar.
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State Regulatory Update: Green Chemistry Alliance comments on latest version of California Safer Products Regulations
The Green Chemistry Alliance, of which NACD is a member, recently submitted comments to the California Department of Toxic Substances Control on the latest version of the state's proposed Safer Consumer Products Regulations. These are the regulations that will implement California's Green Chemistry Initiative. The comments state that while the latest proposal includes some improvements, industry remains concerned about several elements of the proposed regulations. Specifically, GCA continues its strong objection to the proposed regulation's treatment of that which constitutes exemption from duplicative and conflicting regulations, the level of discretion that DTSC has reserved for itself in implementing the program, and the failure to adequately protect trade secrets and other confidential business information. This is likely the last version of the regulations as DTSC plans to implement them later this year. For more information on the regulations, click here. If you would like a copy of the latest GCA comments, please contact Jennifer Gibson, NACD Vice President, Regulatory Affairs, at jgibson@nacd.com.
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  General Business Interest


How will Texas explosion impact chemical security laws?
National Journal
In the wake of a fertilizer plant explosion in Texas, chemical industry officials are already taking exception to calls for heightened regulations, and not all Democrats are convinced such rules are necessarily the appropriate solution. Many key lawmakers are holding out for more information while the cause of the blast remains under investigation.
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Looking for similar articles? Search here, keyword "SECURITY."


Senator: Texas explosion has exposed 'toothless' chemical regulations
The Hill
A Democratic lawmaker says he intends to strengthen "toothless" regulations surrounding plants that process large amounts of dangerous chemicals. In the wake of a fertilizer plant explosion in West, Texas, that killed 14 people and left hundreds more injured or homeless, Sen. Frank Lautenberg, D-N.J., introduced a bill that would make avoiding chemical reporting requirements a federal crime.
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EPA hopes 'work plan' assessments will generate data for more chemicals
Chemical Regulation Reporter via Bloomberg BNA
The Environmental Protection Agency's chemicals office will use the risk assessments it is developing for an initial group of 14 chemicals to evaluate, reduce and manage risks in these and similar compounds that may already be in commerce or which companies would like to make or import, a senior chemicals official said April 18.
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EPA taking a 3-pronged approach to improving chemicals risk management
ICIS
The U.S. government has not been particularly effective at managing chemical risk, according to James J. Jones, acting assistant administrator for the Office of Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention within the Environmental Protection Agency. Through its Existing Chemicals Program, however, the agency is ramping up efforts to ensure that chemicals in commerce are safe. Jones wants all companies that deal with chemicals, including adhesives and sealants manufacturers, to be aware of these activities and, hopefully, share any information that might help the agency achieve effective outcomes.
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TRENDING ARTICLES
Missed last week's issue? See which articles your colleagues read most.

    EPA fines Massachusetts company nearly $500,000 (NACD)
Fertilizer plant explosion tears at the heart of a Texas town (The New York Times)
PHMSA raises hazardous materials penalties (NACD)

Don't be left behind. Click here to see what else you missed.


Hours of service: Back to basics
Truckinginfo
Hours-of-service compliance is centered on two areas: limits and logs. Both drivers and carriers are held responsible for compliance with these regulations. If you're an independent owner-operator, that means you're both the driver and the carrier. Here's a back-to-basics rundown.
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CFATS PSP Comments
Chemical Facility Security News
More than halfway through the comment period on the DHS 60-day ICR notice for the CFATS Personnel Surety Program, only three comments have been lodged. Will it change much before the May 21 deadline?
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DHS updates chemical security website
Chemical Facility Security News
The folks at DHS Infrastructure Security Compliance Division updated the Critical Infrastructure – Chemical Security Web page. The old page had a link to information on reporting security concerns.
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Analysis: You can't talk freight efficiency without good roads and bridges
Land Line
The House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee's Panel on 21st Century Freight Transportation heard from large shippers, carriers and ports during its first hearing Wednesday, April 24, on Capitol Hill. One thing is clear to everyone in the chain: Without improvements to infrastructure, those who move freight will continue to face congestion, deficient bridges and other challenges.
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Obama taps North Carolina city mayor to lead DOT
The Washington Post
President Barack Obama plans to nominate Charlotte, N.C., Mayor Anthony Foxx to serve as transportation secretary, a White House official said Sunday. Foxx, who would succeed Ray LaHood, would be the first African-American nominated to serve in the president's second-term Cabinet. Obama, who has had several Latino, African-American and female Cabinet members step down in recent months, has come under fire for not doing enough to ensure diversity among his top advisers.
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What we've learned about communicating with employees in an emergency
Harvard Business Review
When the Boston metro area went on lockdown in the wake of recent bombings, many folks stuck at home were running an experiment in how much information can be consumed at once. But employers ran into challenges as they tried to notify employees that they didn't need to come in to the office. Making sure employees know what to do in a fast-breaking emergency isn't as easy as just sending a text or an email. It takes preparation as well as rapid execution.
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Toxic materials proposed on busiest US-Canada border crossing
CBC News
The Ambassador Bridge connecting Windsor, Ont., and Detroit, Mich., carries one quarter of all trade between Canada and the United States. It could soon be carrying hazardous materials, too. Michigan transportation officials want state lawmakers to allow hazardous materials to cross North America's busiest commercial land border crossing. According to the Michigan Department of Transportation, 1,200 loads of hazardous materials cross between Canada and the U.S. in southern Ontario every day. Officials now want gases, flammable liquid, peroxides, poisonous and corrosive materials to be allowed to cross the span while being escorted.
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New environmental rules tap trucking firm finances
Mail Tribune
New environmental rules in California are bearing down hard on long-haul truckers, and a nonprofit shop in Medford, Ore., sponsored by Rogue Valley Council of Governments, is educating truck owners about their options and helping them find financing to keep going.
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NACD NewsBrief
Colby Horton, Vice President of Publishing, 469.420.2601
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Caitlin O'Donnell, NACD Manager, Communications, 703.527.6223   

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