BPA update: CA moves forward, OR stalls

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By Consumers Union on Thursday, May 26th, 2011

It’s good news/bad news this week for state bans on BPA in kids’ products.

2011 marks the second year in a row that the Oregon legislature failed to finalize a bill, which stalled this week when an Oregon House of Representatives committee neglected to move on it by Monday’s deadline.  The bill, which already passed the Senate with an overwhelming, bipartisan majority, also had the support of Oregon’s governor.  It would have banned BPA in children’s products like baby bottles and sippy cups, and also would have established an advisory group to consider a “BPA-free” label for Oregon canned goods.

Advocates of the bill blame partisan politics in the House for the bill’s demise, noting though that House members have the power to resurrect the bill before the close of the legislative session at the end of June.  Barring that unlikely event, a ban on BPA may soon be up to Oregon voters as a recent poll shows strong public support for a ballot initiative to get the job done.

Meanwhile: victory! for the Toxin-Free Infants and Toddlers Act in the neighboring state of California.  The bill, which would ban BPA in baby bottles, sippy cups, baby food jars and infant formula containers, cleared the California State Assembly with a 42-29 majority.

Said Assemblymember Betsy Butler, sponsor of the bill: “Every child from every community in our state deserves access to safe products. This is a fight worth having because big chemical money should not be allowed to trump the health of babies in California.”

The bill now moves on to the Senate.

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