June 14, 2006
S3128 is the companion bill in the Senate to HR 4167, the National Uniformity for Food Act bill passed in the U.S. House. This bill would eliminate current state and local food safety and labeling regulations and pre-empt any future ones that aren’t identical to federal ones, most probably including existing state raw milk laws. Members of the House put special interests before public interest when they approved HR4167, the “National Uniformity for Food Act”, with a vote of 283 to 139.
We still have a chance to stop this legislation in the Senate! Our Senators need to know we oppose any attempts to strip state’s abilities to protect and inform their own citizens concerning food safety and labeling issues.
Please Contact Your Senators Now and Ask Them to Strongly Oppose S3128!
It’s easy to call: Call the Senate switchboard at 202-224-3121 and ask for the offices of your Senators.
The message is simple: Let them know you are looking to them to stand up for the rights of our local governments and citizens to protect our public health and food supply by opposing S3128.
Talking Points and Background Information:
Reduction of food safety in many states: The “uniformity” to be achieved by this bill is in many instances the uniform absence of food safety regulation-a potential boon to the food industry. The bill requires all state food safety laws to be identical to the requirements of the Federal Food and Drug Administration. And, since the states regulate many food safety issues not covered by the FDA, many laws will be voided and replaced with no law at all. While the bill would allow states to seek a nationwide warning from FDA, the Congressional Budget Office estimates that the government would spend at least $100 million to answer petitions for tougher state rules. Also, food industry lobbyists will be able to focus efforts against these regulations in one place-instead of working in all 50 states.
Covert legislative campaign? Despite HR4167’s far-reaching implications, it was brought to the House floor without a committee hearing, which would have allowed lawmakers to hear testimony from proponents and opponents from industry, government and advocacy groups. “You wonder why the Congress would do its work in this way,” said Rep. Henry Waxman, D-Los Angeles, accusing food industry lobbyists of waging “a covert legislative campaign.” The bill has been opposed by many environmental, health and consumer rights organizations, 39 state Attorney Generals, 7 state Governors, the National Association of State Departments of Agriculture, the Association of Food and Drug Officials, the National Conference of State Legislators and the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture.
THANK YOU FOR TAKING THE TIME TO ACT ON THIS IMPORTANT ISSUE!