Senate Homeland Security Committee Approves Three-Year CFATS Extension

In late June, the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committe voted 8 to 2 to approve the Continuing Chemical Facilities Antiterrorism Security Act (S. 473), spearheaded by Ranking Member Susan Collins (R-ME). The legislation would extend the Chemical Facility Anti-Terrorism Standards (CFATS) until October 2015.

This is the third bipartisan chemical security bill to be approved by its respective committee this Congress.

“SOCMA thanks Committee Chairman Joe Lieberman and Ranking Member Susan Collins for their many efforts in this Congress and in previous ones to achieve this sensitive balance in a fair and bipartisan manner,” said SOCMA President and CEO Lawrence D. Sloan.

“For the past two years, SOCMA has worked closely with the Committee's majority and minority staff to promote passage of reauthorizing legislation that preserves the efforts made thus far by the Homeland Security Department to implement CFATS as well as the investments made by the chemical industry to reach compliance,” Sloan added.

Included in the bill were provisions added during the committee’s consideration of similar legislation (also sponsored by Collins) last Congress in an effort to garner bipartisan support for its approval. These include voluntary technical assistance to facilities in risk reduction and emergency response training and exercise programs.

According to GcvTrack, the bill is still waiting on a vote from the full Senate.

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