President Obama has signed a bill into law that amends the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act (CPSIA). The bill not only provides much needed added flexibility and discretion to the Consumer Product Safety Commission to implement this law, it also excludes children’s books and paper-based printed materials from onerous third-party testing and certification requirements now in place for any and all products marketed to children under 12 years of age.
“This is a big win for the industry!” Lisbeth Lyons, Vice President of Government Affairs at Printing Industries of America said. “While all children’s manufactured products received a measure of general relief from CPSIA, “ordinary books*” and “paper-based printed materials” were only one of two product categories to gain a full exclusion from the environmental and consumer regulation.”(Youth ATV/bicycles was the other category.)
Printing Industries of America’s Government Affairs team, led by Lisbeth Lyons, and Environmental Health & Safety team, led by Gary Jones, have spent more than two years before the Consumer Product Safety Commission and in the halls of Congress providing environmental data, formal regulatory comments, and legislative testimony explaining the safety factors of print manufacturing processes and urging lawmakers to take action to exempt what was considered by many to be an unintentional consequence of the original law passed in 2008.
“There were many lawmakers on both sides of the political aisle who worked tirelessly to strike the right legislative balance between keeping kids safe and regulating children’s products in a common-sense manner,” said Lyons. “We appreciate these efforts and especially the leadership of House Energy & Commerce Committee Chairman Upton, Ranking Member Waxman, and Subcommittee Chairman Bono Mack and Subcommittee Ranking Member Butterfield. On the Senate side, Senator Pryor deserves kudos for his work to make the CPSIA much more workable to manufacturers and beneficial to consumers.”
Lyons noted, “Even for printers who do not specialize in children’s books or printed materials geared toward children, this is still a significant industry accomplishment. Achieving an exclusion for books and paper-based printed materials from environmental and consumer regulation goes a long way to remind lawmakers that the printing & graphic communications industry’s products are sustainable, safe, and leading edge when it comes to environmentally sound manufacturing.”
For more information on the CPSIA visit http://www.printing.org/cpsia.
*Legislative Definition of Ordinary Books
The term ‘ordinary book’ means a book printed on paper or cardboard, printed with inks or toners, and bound and finished using a conventional method, and that is intended to be read or has educational value. Such term does not include books with inherent play value, books designed or intended for a child three years of age or younger, and does not include any toy or other article that is not a book that is sold or packaged with an ordinary book.