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Over the course of the last few months, the American Supply Association (ASA) has been actively monitoring the state of California's efforts to pass "Get the Lead Out 2.0," which would force manufacturers into a second round of endpoint fixture lead reduction, 10 years after current regulations went into effect.
Since the original reduction initiatives a decade ago, water agencies in California have had 10 years to compile a list of pipes containing lead in California communities and another 10 years to replace these pipes. The new regulations have been primarily driven by legislation requiring schools and daycare facilities to replace internal pipes to remove lead.
As a result, legislators shifted their focus to end-use products — ignoring the external sources of water and lead contamination from underground pipes. With the introduction of AB 2060 earlier this year, the bill as originally written would have required the design and certification of endpoint fixtures to a new international standard that was scheduled to take effect in 2021, three years earlier than the original 2024 target date. Since there was no clear inclusion of sale dates vs. manufacture dates, distributors would run the risk of huge financial losses on inventory that they would no longer be able to sell.
However, thanks to ASA's unrelenting advocacy push at the national, state and local levels on behalf of its members, and more importantly, the engagement of ASA's California distributor members writing 2,400 letters to all 40 state senators in opposing the bill, AB 2060 never gained enough momentum for a floor vote, dying in committee on Sept. 1.
Prior to ASA and its members actively opposing AB 2060, the bill was poised to pass easily since there had not been any active opposition to the bill.
"This is an incredible victory for our members in California," ASA Government Affairs Director Stephen Rossi said. "Our California distributor members sent 2,400 letters to their state senators expressing their opposition to the bill. We are committed to working with legislators and stakeholders to develop solutions that focus on the entire drinking water delivery process — ensuring safe, clean drinking water for Californians."
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