ISPA continues to fight EPR bills in states

The International Sleep Products Association opposes state-level legislation that would require mattress manufacturers to establish and pay for extended producer responsibility programs to recycle used mattresses. And the association recently took action in two states that are considering such mattress recycling laws: Connecticut and California.

On April 17, supporters of an EPR bill for mattresses in Connecticut announced their intent to rush the legislation to the Senate floor for a vote the following day, said Chris Hudgins, ISPA vice president of government relations. Learning of this effort, ISPA mobilized an ISPA member who lives in the state, as well as the state’s retailer trade association and, together, they persuaded lawmakers to drop the bill from the agenda for the day.

Supporters of the Connecticut bill are maintaining pressure and have stated that they intend to pass the legislation this year, Hudgins said. ISPA has met with bill supporters several times, explaining the industry’s opposition to the legislation and has proposed alternatives that would minimize the impact of the bill on mattress manufacturers, retailers and consumers, if it is, in fact, enacted. The Connecticut legislature adjourns May 9.

On April 23, the California Senate Environmental Quality Committee held a hearing on EPR legislation for mattresses.

Hudgins testified in opposition to the bill (read ISPA’s statement), while proponents cited the prevalence of illegally dumped mattresses in Oakland as a primary need for the legislation.

Following the hearing, the committee voted 5-1 to advance the bill. At this time, Hudgins said, it appears that the bill will be considered by one or more other Senate committees.

ISPA members or other manufacturers, suppliers or retailers in the mattress industry who are interested in supporting the association’s efforts against EPR legislation in Connecticut and California should contact Hudgins at chudgins@sleepproducts.org or call 703-683-8371.

While ISPA opposes state-by-state bills because they can impose unnecessary costs and bureaucracy on the mattress industry, it has proposed federal legislation, the Used Mattress Recycling Act, to help create a national program for recycling used mattress parts. The Used Mattress Recycling Act would establish a national mattress recycling system that would be an industry-led, efficient solution to the challenge of recycling used mattresses.