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Two senators and one congressman received the award
Members of the Plumbing Manufacturers Intl. (PMI) executive committee and PMI Executive Director Barbara C. Higgens traveled to Washington, D.C., to present Sens. Barbara Boxer and James Inhofe and Rep. Tom Petri with Legislator of the Year awards. These officials were recognized for their leadership and support of the PMI-supported Reduction of Lead in Water Act, signed into law Jan. 4 by President Barack Obama. The bill requires a 0.25% maximum lead content for plumbing products and provides a 36-month implementation period.
PMI has bestowed the Legislator of the Year award upon only four elected representatives since 1998. Jack Krecek, PMI president; Stewart Yang, PMI first vice president; and Lee Mercer, PMI past president, were on hand with Higgens and PMI Washington, D.C., office staff, to express their thanks and present the awards to their recipients.
"PMI is grateful to these legislators for their help in securing the passage of this important bill. Without a uniform national standard, a patchwork of requirements could have emerged," Higgens said. "PMI was on top of this legislation from its inception and worked to aggressively lobby members of the Senate and House to pass the bill through Capitol Hill visits [and] letters and phone calls to representatives. This bill harmonizes lead standards across the country. These standards were already achieved in California and in Maryland and Vermont through PMI's active lobbying efforts."
On the Senate side, passage of the Reduction of Lead in Drinking Water Act involved the bipartisan efforts of Boxer and Inhofe. Working together for several months, they positioned the legislation in the Environment and Public Works Committee and on the Senate floor so that it passed by unanimous consent on Dec. 16, 2010.
"In the waning days of the 111th Congress, Congressman Petri worked very hard to encourage his colleagues to vote in favor of the Reduction of Lead in Drinking Water Act by writing a 'Dear Colleague' letter and urging lawmakers on the House floor for passage," said Higgens. The bill narrowly passed the House by a four-vote margin on Dec. 17, 2010.