Albany Schenectady Counties

Albany and Schenectady Counties Give BPA a 1-2 Punch

Group with BottleThis week the Albany and Schenectady County Legislatures each voted to ban the sale of baby bottles and sippy cups made with the toxic chemical bisphenol A.

Both bills passed unanimously and had tremendous support from legislators. In Albany County the ban was co-sponsored by 28 out of 39 legislators. In Schenectady County 12 of the 15 legislators co-sponsored the ban.

Albany County Executive Michael Breslin is expected to sign the bill soon, and it will go into effect on January 1, 2010.

In Schenectady County, the law will go into effect 90 days after Sue Savage, Chair of the County Legislature, files it with the Secretary of State, which is standard for all County bills.

Albany and Schenectady counties will then join Suffolk County as locations where only BPA-free baby bottle and sippy cups are sold. Additional New York counties are considering similar measures, including Dutchess, Nassau, Tompkins and Westchester counties.

“I’m proud to be sponsoring a bill that will take an important first step to protect our families from toxic BPA,” said Bryan Clenahan, Albany County Legislator and sponsor of Local Law “C” of 2009. “This is an important issue, and one that needs a broader action. New York State should make sure all families are protected from BPA in the products we’re banning and beyond.”

Advocates from Clean New York, Capital Region Action Against Breast Cancer (CRAAB), LDA of NYS and New York Public Interest Research Group (NYPIRG) were all instrumental in moving the bills forward with support from Consumers Union, NYS Nurses Association, New York City Environmental Justice Alliance (NYCEJA), Breast Cancer Fund, Center for Health and Environmental Justice (CHEJ) and Physicians for Social Responsibility.

Russ Haven, Legislative Counsel for NYPIRG, noted “Albany and Schenectady Counties are on the leading edge of preventive action to protect public health and safety, particularly for young children, by banning BPA.”

“I hope our representatives in the state and federal government follow our lead and take broader action on this important issue,” said Dr. Brian Gordon, Chairman of the Schenectady County Legislature’s Committee on Health and a co-sponsor of the measure.