Date: April 29, 2022
To: The Honorable Chellie Pingree, Chair, House Appropriations Subcommittee on Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies, Washington, DC 20515
The Honorable David Joyce, Ranking Member, House Appropriations Subcommittee on Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies, Washington, DC 20515
The Honorable Jeff Merkley, Chair, Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies, Washington, DC 20515
The Honorable Lisa Murkowski, Ranking Member, Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies, Washington, DC 20515
Cc:The Honorable Tom Carper, Chair, Senate Environment and Public Works Committee
The Honorable Shelley Moore Capito, Ranking Member, Senate Environment and Public Works Committee
The Honorable Frank Pallone, Chair, House Committee on Energy and Commerce
The Honorable Cathy McMorris Rodgers, Ranking Member, House Committee on Energy and Commerce
Dear Chair Pingree, Chair Merkley, Ranking Member Joyce and Ranking Member Murkowski,
We urge you to fully fund the President’s FY2023 budget request for implementation of the Toxic Substances Control Act. Fully funding this request would provide the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) with the resources to successfully administer its greater responsibilities under TSCA as amended in 2016 by the Frank R. Lautenberg Chemical Safety for the 21st Century Act (2016 Lautenberg Act). This important bipartisan law is key to protecting people from chemical hazards in their workplaces, homes, and communities. However, EPA’s implementation of the 2016 Lautenberg Act has been impeded by a lack of sufficient funds and staff.
The President’s FY2023 budget of $124.2 million and an additional 201 FTE for the TSCA program would provide EPA with needed scientific expertise and the resources to meet its statutory mandates to review and manage the risks of chemicals using the best available science. The 2016 Lautenberg Act created substantial additional workload and the need for deeper expertise, particularly for data development, chemicals risk evaluation and management, and the review of confidential business information. These critical resources will increase the Agency’s capacity to address these exigencies and will also improve the agency’s ability to conduct credible and timely assessments in its pre-market review of new chemicals.
Recent reports by the Government Accountability Office in 2021 and EPA’s Office of Inspector General in 2020 found that EPA’s ability to assess and manage chemicals regressed due in part to lack of workforce to carry out its duties. Both reports recognized the greatly increased scope of work under the amended TSCA.
We ask you to support the important role EPA plays in protecting human health and the environment from toxic chemicals by fully funding EPA’s budget request to build the capacity and expertise needed to implement the expanded authority and responsibilities given to it by Congress. A fully funded TSCA will support EPA’s mandate to assess and address the risks from toxic chemicals faced by families and populations at higher risk of exposure and those at increased risk from their effects, including low-income communities, communities of color, pregnant women and children, Indigenous populations, and workers.
American Academy of Pediatrics
American Public Health Association
Children's Environmental Health Network
Defend Our Health
Environmental Defense Fund
Environmental Working Group
If It Was Your Child
International Association of Fire Fighters
League of Conservation Voters
Moms Clean Air Force
Natural Resources Defense Council
Safer Chemicals Healthy Families
The BlueGreen Alliance
Utility Workers Union Of America