SACRAMENTO, CA - A bill that will give the California Air Resources Board (CARB) the authority to impose new fees on various consumer products and architectural paints roared to passage in the state legislature despite protests from industry groups.

The bill allows the imposition of a fee on manufacturers of architectural coatings if a manufacturer's sales in the state would result in the emission of 250 tons or more of VOCs per year. The measure would require that revenue from the fee be used to "mitigate or reduce air pollution in the state created by consumer products and architectural coatings."

In addition to architectural coatings, products affected by the measure include aerosol coatings, caulks, sealants, and adhesives. The measure is one of many actions being pursued by the state to address a severe budget shortfall that is projected at $25 billion to $35 billion.

The NPCA is estimating that at least 26 companies that manufacture architectural coatings would be affected by the measure, with those companies located both in California and in other states. At least 60 companies that make consumer products could be affected.

Industry groups that fought in vain against the bill said the fee could cost individual companies anywhere from $25,000 to $500,000 per year.