The Price of Reform: Models for Financing TSCA 2.0 (A Policy Roundtable Lunch Discussion)

February 5, 2015 10:30 am — 1:00 pm
Washington, DC (and via teleconference)

Co-sponsored by committees of ABA SEER

The American Bar Association (ABA), Section on Environment, Energy, and Resources (SEER), Committee on Pesticides, Chemical Regulation and Right to Know, Special Committee on Congressional Relations, and the Environmental Law Institute (ELI) were pleased to co-sponsor this roundtable discussion.

Program Summary

At the start of the 114th Congress, lawmakers from both parties in the House and the Senate have voiced support for reviewing and reforming the 36-year old Toxic Substances Control Act (“TSCA”). Assuming that the diverse TSCA stakeholder community can find agreement on the many scientific, policy, and legal issues implicated by TSCA reform, lawmakers will still have to address two other critical issues necessary for long-term success.

  1. What levels of initial and long-term program staffing and funding will be needed to implement a program responsible for overseeing tens of thousands of existing chemical substances and uses, and thousands of new chemical substances and uses each year?
  1. What regulatory financing mechanism can ensure that any reformed chemical control framework (TSCA2.0) provides adequate and consistent funding needed to assure the safety of chemicals, maintain public confidence, and meet statutory deadlines?

The 2-hour lunch-time program brought together experts and stakeholders from across the political spectrum to discuss these and related issues. During the first half hour, legal experts offered brief “primer” presentations on assorted financing mechanisms used in chemical regulatory programs in the US, Canada, and European Union. During the remaining ninety minutes of the Roundtable program, participants engaged in a facilitated discussion on how these and other potential financing models could be tailored to address the unique and ambitious objectives reflected in recent proposals for TSCA reform.


11:30 am Registration and Lunch for On-Site Participants
12:00 pm Welcome and Review of Program and Format
  • Charles Franklin, Akin Gump, Co-Chair, ABA SEER Special Committee on Congressional Relations
  • Joanne Thelmo, Chair, ABA SEER Pesticides, Chemical Regulation, and Right-to-Know Committee
12:05 pm

Brief Primers on Alternative Regulatory Funding Models and Challenges

  • US (Pesticides): Keith Matthews, Sidley Austin
  • US (Drugs and Cosmetics): Nathan Brown, Akin Gump
  • EU (Chemicals): Herb Estreicher, Keller and Heckman
  • Canada (Chemicals): John Broderick, Environmental Law Institute (ELI)
  • States (Chemicals): Alexandra Dunn, Environmental Council of the States (ECOS)
12:40 pm

Facilitated Roundtable Discussion with Interested Stakeholders

  • Assessment of the "annual appropriations" financing model
  • Potential lessons from alternative regulatory financing models
  • Technical, legal, policy, and political considerations for a successful financing system
  • Ideas for structuring financing under a reformed TSCA
1:50 pm

Wrap up

  • Charles Franklin, Akin Gump, Co-Chair, ABA/SEER SCCR
  • Joanne Thelmo, Chair, ABA SEER PCRRTK Chair
  • Scott Schang, Acting President, ELI
 2:00 pm  Close
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