CSS Supports Amendments to the Achieving Less Excess in Regulation and Requiring Transparency (ALERRT) Act, H.R. 2804

February 26, 2014 | Download PDF

Dear Representative,

The Coalition for Sensible Safeguards (CSS), which includes more than 150 labor, environmental, public health, scientific, consumer, financial reform, and public interest groups, strongly opposes H.R. 2804, a package of radical and dangerous legislative measures called the ALERRT Act. These proposals would undermine our nation’s ability to set health, safety and environmental standards as well as new financial protections. Given that we have experienced multiple health and safety disasters in communities and workplaces across the country in recent years, it is the wrong time to thwart the progress of necessary public protections.

While CSS strongly urges members to vote no on H.R. 2804, CSS encourages members to support the amendments offered below:

Amendment #4 sponsored by Congressman Cartwright (PA): This amendment would remove the blanket moratorium in 2804, the ALERT Act, which imposes a uniform 6 month delay on most rules essential to protecting the health, safety, and welfare of the American public.

Amendment #8 sponsored by Congressman Murphy (FL): This amendment will strike from H.R. 2804 title II, H.R. 2122, The Regulatory Accountability Act, and title IV, H.R. 1493, the Sunshine for Regulatory Decrees and Settlements Act. H.R. 2122 would weaken an already slow and inefficient process for adopting new public health safeguards at all federal agencies. H.R. 1493 would make it more difficult to hold agencies accountable that do not follow the law, including anti-discrimination and civil rights laws as well as environmental laws.

Amendment #6 sponsored by Congresswoman Jackson-Lee (TX): This amendment will exempt from H.R. 2804 all rules issued by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and any consent decree or settlement made as a result of such rules. This common-sense amendment ensures that crucial national security measures will not be weakened, delayed, or blocked by this harmful legislation.

Amendment #11 sponsored by Congressman Miller (CA) and Congressman Courtney (CT): This amendment will exempt from H.R. 2804 all rules issued by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration intended to prevent combustible dust explosions and fires. This common-sense amendment ensures that OSHA rules to prevent combustible dust explosions and fires will not be weakened, delayed, or blocked by this harmful legislation.

Amendment #13 sponsored by Congressman Miller (CA) and Congressman Courtney (CT): This amendment exempts from H.R. 2804 all regulations, or modifications to regulations, recommended in writing by the Inspector General of a federal agency including, but not limited to, protections for taxpayers, students, workplace health and safety, and those that increase the efficiency and effectiveness of agency activities. This common-sense amendment ensures that regulations the Inspector General believes are in the best interests of taxpayers, students, workers, and the federal agency itself, will not be weakened, delayed, or blocked by this harmful legislation.

Amendment #14 sponsored by Congressman Johnson (GA): This amendment exempts from H.R. 2084 any rule, consent decree, or settlement agreement that the Director of the Office of Management and Budget determines would result in net job creation or whose benefits exceeds its costs. This common-sense amendment ensures that any rule that creates jobs or provides net benefits to the public will not be weakened, delayed, or blocked by this harmful legislation.

Amendment #17 sponsored by Congressman Connolly (VA): This amendment exempts from H.R. 2804 any rule pertaining to air or water quality. This common-sense amendment ensures that this harmful legislation will not make it harder or impossible for our federal agencies to keep our air free of pollution and our water free of toxic contaminants.

Sincerely,

Katherine McFate
President and CEO, Center for Effective Government
Co-chair, Coalition for Sensible Safeguards

Robert Weissman
President, Public Citizen
Co-chair, Coalition for Sensible Safeguards