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Prop 65 Revisions are Ongoing, Public Meeting on July 30, 2013

Posted in Prop 65

This is from OEHHA’s website; the colored comments are ours.

On July 30, 2013, the Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA) will hold a public pre-regulatory workshop for the purpose of gathering input from interested parties on the content of a regulation that would address Proposition 65 warnings. Such a regulation, if formally proposed and adopted, would either supplement or replace existing OEHHA regulations governing Proposition 65 warnings and conform to any statutory changes if enacted.

The workshop will take place from 10 am to 3:30 pm in the Coastal Hearing Room at the Cal/EPA Headquarters Building, 1001 I Street, Sacramento, CA.  The workshop will be webcast.  The URL for the webcast (not active until the day and time of the meeting) is:

Potential Regulatory Action OEHHA is considering a rulemaking that would provide for more informative and meaningful warnings to individuals concerning exposures to carcinogens and reproductive toxicants.  The regulation would offer a variety of options for businesses that are required to provide these warnings, and would provide businesses with greater certainty that their warnings comply with Proposition 65.

At this time, OEHHA believes the regulation should include the following:

  1. A requirement that a warning inform an individual that he or she will be exposed to a listed chemical.
  2. The minimum information that must be included in all warnings, including the health effect (cancer, male reproductive toxicity, female reproductive toxicity, developmental toxicity) for which the chemical(s) involved in the exposure was listed; information on how a person will be exposed; and, where applicable, simple information (such as washing hands) on how to avoid or reduce an exposure.

This will make warnings more difficult and present additional avenues for litigation, particularly if there are more than one Prop 65 chemical present and more than one avenue of ingestion

  1. Approved warning methods and content for use by product manufacturers and retailers regarding exposures to listed chemicals from consumer products, including products sold at retail establishments and products sold via the internet.  These approved methods may include alternatives to on-product warning.

This may be adequate although previous attempts to make this change have been unsecessful, as many parties have asserted that warnings need to be at the point of sale.

Approved warning methods and content for use by manufacturers and retailers regarding exposures to listed chemicals in foods, including foods sold at retail establishments and food products sold via the internet.  These approved methods may include alternatives to on-product warnings.

Same as above, there is a prejudice by the AG for having the warning at the point of sale, in the store. It would be useful to have specific standards set to ease compliance questions.

  1. Approved warning methods and content for environmental exposures, including exposures an individual may experience when entering or spending time in an area where listed chemicals are present. OEHHA intends to provide specific warning language and methods for some common environmental scenarios, such as parking structures, food courts, hotels, apartments and other businesses, to provide greater clarity and certainty where appropriate.

Makes Sense

  1. Requirements and approved methods for providing additional contextual information to persons concerning exposures to listed chemicals. Such information would allow individuals to learn more about some or all of the specific chemicals involved in the exposure, and the applicability of other state and federal laws to these exposures. This information would not have to be provided prior to the exposure, but instead would have to be available to the public on a web site or other generally accessible location.

Makes sense, although it will cause manufactures and retailers to engage in additional efforts prior to sale.

  1. Reasonable transition times for businesses to come into compliance with this regulation and recognition of existing warnings that are included in court-approved settlements.

We try to draft our settlement agreements to include this time.