|01/29/2019||REFERRED TO TRANSPORTATION|
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STATE OF NEW YORK ________________________________________________________________________ 2809 2019-2020 Regular Sessions IN SENATE January 29, 2019 ___________ Introduced by Sen. COMRIE -- read twice and ordered printed, and when printed to be committed to the Committee on Transportation AN ACT to amend the public authorities law, in relation to prohibiting the metropolitan transportation authority from using cleaning materi- als or chemicals which may cause or exacerbate asthma The People of the State of New York, represented in Senate and Assem- bly, do enact as follows: 1 Section 1. Legislative intent. Occupational asthma has become the 2 most prevalent work-related lung disease in developed countries. Accord- 3 ing to the American Lung Association, ammonia and chlorine are among 4 cleaning solvents and chemical irritants that have been proven asthma 5 triggers. According to the Federal Centers for Disease Control (CDC), 6 asthma rates have gone up 105 percent for females over the past 15 7 years, compared to about a 41 percent increase for males. Asthma hits 8 the highest in low income neighborhoods with the largest minority popu- 9 lation, these are the people who use public transportation the most. 10 Furthermore, the Agency for Toxic Substance and Disease Registry 11 (ATSDR) says that over the past decade, the prevalence of asthma in both 12 children and adults has increased in the United States. Workplace expo- 13 sures have been linked to exacerbations of asthma. 14 The American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology, further indi- 15 cates that while a previous personal or family history of allergies will 16 make a person more likely to develop occupational asthma, many individ- 17 uals who have no such history still will develop this disease if exposed 18 to conditions that trigger it. 19 One cause of occupational asthma is known as Direct Irritant Effects. 20 These are irritants that provoke occupational asthma and include hydro- 21 chloric acid, sulfur dioxide or ammonia, which is found in the petroleum 22 or chemical industries. Workers exposed to these substances will 23 frequently begin wheezing and experiencing other asthma symptoms imme- 24 diately after exposure to the irritant substance. Workers who already EXPLANATION--Matter in italics (underscored) is new; matter in brackets [ ] is old law to be omitted. LBD07405-01-9S. 2809 2 1 have asthma or some other respiratory disorder are particularly affected 2 by this type of exposure. 3 It is therefore, the intent and purpose of the legislature to prevent 4 the use of those cleaning materials and chemicals which may cause 5 persons employed by, or persons using the facilities and equipment of, 6 the metropolitan transportation authority to develop asthma, or to have 7 symptoms of asthma triggered or exacerbated. 8 § 2. The public authorities law is amended by adding a new section 9 1279-e to read as follows: 10 § 1279-e. Prohibited use of asthma causing chemicals. 1. Notwith- 11 standing any other law, rule or regulation to the contrary, the metro- 12 politan transportation authority shall not use for any purpose, includ- 13 ing the cleaning and maintenance of its facilities and equipment, 14 cleaning materials or chemicals exposure to which may cause persons to 15 develop the disease of asthma, or which may exacerbate or trigger the 16 symptoms of asthma. 17 2. A determination of which cleaning materials or chemicals exposure 18 to which may cause persons to develop the disease of asthma, or which 19 may exacerbate or trigger the symptoms of asthma, shall be made by the 20 commissioner of health of the state of New York who shall promulgate a 21 list of such cleaning materials or chemicals and transmit the list to 22 the chairman of the metropolitan transportation authority forthwith. 23 § 3. This act shall take effect on the one hundred eightieth day after 24 it shall have become a law.