Connecticut Seal

General Assembly

 

Raised Bill No. 5126

February Session, 2010

 

LCO No. 899

 

*00899_______ENV*

Referred to Committee on Environment

 

Introduced by:

 

(ENV)

 

AN ACT ESTABLISHING A CHEMICAL INNOVATIONS INSTITUTE AT THE UNIVERSITY OF CONNECTICUT.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Assembly convened:

Section 1. (NEW) (Effective from passage) (a) There is established a Chemical Innovations Institute within The University of Connecticut Health Center that shall (1) foster green job growth and safe workplaces through clean technology innovation and green chemistry, and (2) provide assistance to businesses, state agencies and nonprofit organizations that seek to utilize safe alternatives to chemicals that are harmful to public health and the environment.

(b) The institute shall be overseen by a board of directors. The board of directors shall consist of (1) the Commissioners of Public Health, Environmental Protection and Consumer Protection, or their designees, (2) a member appointed by The University of Connecticut Health Center who shall be an ex-officio member of the board and shall serve as the executive director of the institute, and (3) five members appointed as follows: (A) One by the Governor, who shall have expertise in sustainable business practices; (B) one by the president pro tempore of the Senate, who shall be a representative of a state-wide environmental health not-for-profit organization; (C) one by the speaker of the House of Representatives, who shall be a representative of a state-wide occupational health and safety organization or union health and safety committee; (D) one by the minority leader of the Senate, who shall be a health professional or scientist with expertise regarding the health effects of prenatal exposure to chemicals of concern or occupational environmental health; and (E) one by the minority leader of the House of Representatives, who shall have green chemistry training and expertise.

(c) Initial appointments to the board shall be made on or before August 15, 2010. In the event that an appointing authority fails to appoint an initial board member by August 31, 2010, the president pro tempore of the Senate and the speaker of the House of Representatives shall jointly appoint a board member who meets the applicable qualifications for such appointment and such board member shall serve a full term. The term for the initial board member appointed by the Governor shall be two years. The term for the initial board members appointed by the president pro tempore of the Senate and speaker of the House of Representatives shall be three years. The term for the initial board member appointed by the minority leaders of the Senate and the House of Representatives shall be four years. Any person appointed to the board after such initial appointments shall serve a term of four years.

(d) The board shall appoint two members to serve as the cochairpersons of the board. The board shall meet at the discretion of the cochairpersons provided it shall meet not less than once per year. A quorum of the members of the board shall be required to conduct any business. Five members of the board shall constitute a quorum.

(e) The institute shall work with businesses, state agencies, non profit organizations, workers, and community groups as a resource for information about chemicals that are of concern to public health and the environment, safe alternatives to such chemicals, emerging state and federal chemical regulations and the impact of such regulations on the environment and public health. The institute shall: (1) Research and identify chemicals that are important to the state economy, (2) provide research and technical assistance concerning chemicals of concern to the environment and public health, as well as safe alternatives to such chemicals, (3) coordinate and share information with institutes in other states and the interstate chemicals clearinghouse, as described in section 22a-902 of the general statutes, concerning safe alternative chemicals and the impact of such safe alternative chemicals on public health and the environment, and (4) offer trainings for businesses regarding chemical regulations and safer chemical alternatives.

(f) The board shall review progress in meeting the duties described in subsection (e) of this section. The board shall work to identify potential funding sources that may be utilized to establish and administer the institute.

(g) Not later than January fifteenth of each year and in accordance with the provisions of section 11-4a of the general statutes, the board shall submit a report to the joint standing committee of the General Assembly having cognizance of matters relating to the environment on the activities of the past year that were performed by the institute in furtherance of the institute's duties. Such report shall include recommendations on options to fund the institute.

(h) The board shall seek federal funds for the administration of the institute. In addition, The University of Connecticut Health Center may seek funding for the institute from nongovernmental foundations, private citizens, corporations and other government entities. In the event that the board determines that adequate funds exist, the institute may establish technical assistance grants to businesses and nonprofit organizations to assist such businesses and nonprofit organizations in transitioning to the use of safer chemical alternatives.

(i) The University of Connecticut Health Center shall not be required to undertake any duty of the institute if federal, state and private funds, in the aggregate, are insufficient to pay for the initial and ongoing expenses of the institute.

This act shall take effect as follows and shall amend the following sections:

Section 1

from passage

New section

Statement of Purpose:

To establish a Chemical Innovations Institute at The University of Connecticut Health Center.

[Proposed deletions are enclosed in brackets. Proposed additions are indicated by underline, except that when the entire text of a bill or resolution or a section of a bill or resolution is new, it is not underlined.]