OEHHA releases new Prop 65 warning proposal

By CMTA Staff

Capitol Update, March 13, 2014

On Friday, March 7th, the California Office of Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA) released what they have termed a summary of a “Preregulatory Proposal” concerning Proposition 65 warnings.  The proposal takes into account comments received at the public workshop on warning regulations on July 30, 2013, as well as other comments received to date.

Three to five minimum elements are proposed:

1. Use of the signal word “WARNING”;

2. Use of the word “expose” consistent with the language in the statute;

3. The standard (Globally Harmonized System) pictogram for toxic hazards (for consumer products other than foods, occupational and environmental warnings);

4. Disclosure of the names of up to 12 commonly-known chemicals that require warnings, such as lead and mercury, in the text of the warning; and

5. A link to a new OEHHA website to allow the public to access more information relating to the warning, including additional chemicals, routes of exposure, and, if applicable, any actions that individuals could take to reduce or avoid exposure.

According to OEHHA, the proposal would provide the public with better information and business with more regulatory certainty, clarity and additional warning options:

  • Provides an opportunity for small retailers (25 or fewer employees) to cure certain minor warning violations within 14 days and avoid any private enforcement whatsoever;
  • Incorporates alternatives such as email (for environmental exposures) , as well as automated processes that may be developed in the future, while maintaining existing options such as on–product warnings and signs;
  • Includes tailored language for specific warning contexts (e.g. alcohol, drugs, medical devices, parking garages, hotels, apartments and theme parks);
  • Businesses may propose tailored warning methods and content for specific chemicals or exposure scenarios for adoption into regulations; and
  • Recognizes warnings covered by existing court-approved settlements.

OEHHA plans to hold a pre-regulatory public workshop on April 14, 2014 and to propose formal regulations early this summer with an expectation of adopting a final regulation by early summer 2015.  A website will be developed concurrent with the regulatory process.

For significantly more information, click here.

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