The EPA this week proposed a fees rule under the amended Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) that it says will give the agency the resources it needs to review chemicals for safety.

Under the Frank Lautenberg Chemical Safety for the 21st Century Act, the proposed fees on certain chemical manufacturers, including importers and processors, would provide what the agency calls “a sustainable source of funding” for implementing the amended law.

The EPA says the fees would go toward developing risk evaluations for existing chemicals; collecting and reviewing toxicity and exposure data and other information; reviewing Confidential Business Information (CBI); and, making determinations in a timely and transparent manner with respect to the safety of new chemicals before they enter the marketplace.

The Lautenberg Chemical Safety Act is the first major update to an environmental statute in 20 years. The EPA says it is taking steps to “get the most modern and safe chemicals to market quickly in order to provide regulatory certainty for manufacturers and confidence for American consumers.”

The fees rule is the final of four framework rules under the Act, incorporating input received at an August 11, 2016 public meeting. Under the proposed rule, affected businesses would begin incurring fees on October 1, 2018 and small businesses would receive a substantial 80 percent discount on their fees for new chemical submissions.

The 60-day comment period will open upon the forthcoming publication of the proposed fees rule in the Federal Register. A prepublication version of the proposed rule is available at: