As seen in The Goods published by The Kentucky Association of Manufacturers.
The Kentucky Association of Manufacturer’s Chemical Industry Council continues to aggressively advocate for the improvement of Kentucky’s environmental and regulatory system and how it impacts Kentucky’s manufacturers. Kentucky CIC’s mission is to serve, in coordination with KAM resources, as a clearinghouse, educational resource and champion for environmental, safety and other matters important to its membership. The CIC supports environmental programs that are based on sound science, consider cost-benefit relationships, and consider technical and economic feasibility.
From issues that impact industrial activity in general to matters that are chemical-specific, the 2012 Regular Session of the Kentucky General Assembly has been replete with issues drawing the association’s interest.
Boilers, Pressure Vessels, and Piping
For the past several years, Kentucky CIC has been integrally involved in the development of a program to allow businesses with pressure vessels and associated piping to conduct their own regulatory inspections of those systems in accordance with nationally-recognized standards and under the oversight of state regulators. House Bill 358, sponsored by Rep. Melvin Henley (D–Murray), was filed to achieve that purpose. At this point, and as expected, the bill has been amended to include an omnibus modernization effort of Kentucky’s Boiler and Pressure Vessel Code. The association is hopeful that its involvement with a coalition including labor interests, the Board of Boiler and Pressure Vessel Rules, and the Department of Housing, Buildings and Construction results in the passage this session of a bill beneficial to Kentucky manufacturers.
KAM and the CIC have consistently been viewed as leaders for industry in the arena of responsible environmental remediation requirements. Since the enactment of Kentucky’s key environmental remediation program in 1992, the association has aggressively advocated for programs that foster redevelopment of property underused due to environmental conditions. Consistent with that approach, CIC is supportive of HB 465, which was filed by Rep. Fred Nesler (D–Mayfield). The bill provides additional comfort to prospective purchasers of properties impacted by hazardous substances and petroleum. KAM and CIC are members of a consortium, including the Energy and Environment Cabinet, municipalities, and environmental interest groups, that support of the bill.
Kentucky CIC is supportive of Rep. Leslie Combs’ (D-Pikeville) HB 450, which requires Kentucky agencies to prepare a thorough cost-benefit analysis on all proposed administrative regulations. The regulated community believes that, especially in light of the current economic climate, businesses should not be burdened with additional regulatory requirements, unless the benefit derived from the action outweighs the costs associated with it.
In coordination with its state and national partners, the CIC has been on the defensive during the 2012 session with respect to attacks on chemicals and chemical products. HB 146, sponsored by Rep. Carl Rollins (D-Midway), would create a program under which schools are encouraged to use “green cleaning products.” The bill was amended on the House floor to remove language that vilifies chemicals and to ensure that the bill does not relate to disinfectants. In addition, HB 236, filed by Rep. Mary Lou Marzian (D-Louisville), would ban the manufacture, sale, or distribution of certain products containing bisphenol-A. CIC opposes this and any other measure seeking to ban products on a state-by-state basis.
KAM and the CIC have also been watching HB 404, which would impose greater burdens on the management and disposal of residuals from the combustion of coal. Passage of the bill, which was filed by Rep. Joni Jenkins (D-Louisville), would likely result in increased costs for energy producers in Kentucky.
As the legislature wraps up its business for the 2012 Session, KAM and the CIC will continue to keep membership up to date on the status of legislation and other policy matters.