ARLINGTON, VA – The National Association of Chemical Distributors (NACD) President Eric R. Byer issued a statement on President Trump’s proposed 2021 budget for the federal government.

“NACD is disappointed the White House budget proposal eliminates funding for the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Chemical Facility Anti-Terrorism Standards (CFATS) program, which is vital to ensuring that the chemical industry and regulators work together to keep our nation’s chemical facilities secured against potential acts of terrorism.

“Congress overwhelmingly approved the program’s continuation and funding in January 2019 for an additional 15 months to provide lawmakers further time to work on a long-term reauthorization. Despite certain lawmakers acting as a roadblock to the reauthorization of CFATS, we remain optimistic that Congress will continue to support and fund this critical program. To be clear, now is not the time for the White House and lawmakers to play games with our nation’s chemical security.

“Additionally, while NACD fully supports the administration's deregulatory agenda for duplicative and burdensome red tape, it is concerning the president's budget request also proposes the elimination of important bipartisan and industry-supported regulations like CFATS and the independent agency the U.S. Chemical Safety and Hazard Investigation Board (CSB). The president’s proposal would remove this important federal agency from the incident investigations process and cut valuable resources that CSB develops for the chemical industry to improve their operational safety.

“Lastly, it is time for Congress to finally coalesce around a long-term infrastructure program. The president’s budget helps move that process forward, but a more serious effort on the part of Congress is needed to rebuild our nation’s crumbling roads and bridges and put the United States on a solid foundation to ensure a vibrant economy for years to come.

“In the coming months, we look forward to working with Congress to make sure that all of these important measures are funded to ensure the safety, security, and economic strength of the chemical distribution industry remain top priorities for the federal government.”