The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) is actively considering a proposed regulation that will impose undue burdens on manufacturers, retailers and consumers should it be put into effect. Specifically, the rule will require a mandatory standard for table saws, where all table saws sold in the U.S. will be forced to incorporate patented technology. This costly rule will add around $1,000 to the cost of the average table saw, which currently sits at $250-300 dollars, and will impose design requirements on manufacturers. This process first began more than a decade ago when the CPSC granted a petition filed by the holder of the patents to establish a mandatory standard. Should this rule be finalized, it would create a government-imposed monopoly for the patent holders.
To keep what would be an unprecedented action by the CPSC from coming to fruition, the NC Chamber joined the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) and more than 35 organizations in submitting public comment on the proposed rule. In this letter the organizations collectively addressed the creation of a government-mandated monopoly, the voluntary standard that’s already in place and helpful in mitigating risk of injury, the fact that the rule’s benefit doesn’t bear a reasonable relationship to its cost and safety and that this is not the least burdensome option. As can be read in the comments, the CPSC’s proposed regulation violates the statutory requirements of the Consumer Product Safety Act (CPSA) and the intent of Congress. Further, if the rule was to go into effect, it would set a dangerous precedent for future rules on products and industries the CPSC oversees.
Manufacturing accounts for 20.85% of North Carolina’s total output, equating to billions of dollars in product. As one of North Carolina’s greatest economic drivers, the manufacturing industry employs 10.7% of the workforce and directly affects the state’s overall competitiveness. As NAM’s sole state affiliate, the NC Chamber is committed to representing and advocating for our state’s manufacturers. As such, we were eager to sign onto this letter and will continue to do all we can to see that this rule is not established.
Gary J. Salamido
Vice President, Government Affairs
North Carolina Chamber