Menendez Expresses Disappointment That The White House Import Safety Plan Excludes Travel Restrictions

Menendez Expresses Disappointment That The White House Import Safety Plan Excludes Travel Restrictions

Tomorrow, Menendez will introduce legislation curtailing industry-funded travel for regulators

Washington - As the acting-Chair of the Consumer Product Safety Commission appeared before a House Committee, President Bush today discussed the recommendations of his import safety working group. Despite recent revelations that the current and previous heads of the CPSC took numerous trips funded by the industries they regulate, nowhere in the working group's report did the words "travel" or "gift" appear.

U.S. Senator Robert Menendez (D-NJ), who has announced his intention to introduce legislation barring travel for regulators that is paid for by the industries they regulate and who has called for acting-Chairwoman Nancy Nord to step down, today expressed his disappointment that the travel issue was not mentioned in the report. He said he will introduce his legislation tomorrow.

"The image of the toy industry providing free travel for federal regulators while American children are playing with toxic toys is probably seared into the minds of parents across the country," said Sen. Menendez. "A lot of things need to change within the Consumer Product Safety Commission, and this inappropriate travel would seem to be toward the top of the list.

"For the Commission to be effective, it first needs the trust of the American people, and removing these sorts of conflicts of interest is an excellent way to begin to build that trust again. How this issue could be ignored by the president's working group is beyond me, but I will introduce legislation tomorrow that will address it - not only with respect to this commission, but for all federal regulatory bodies."

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