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Feb 5, 2008

Board Requests Budget of $10,600,000 for Fiscal Year 2009 - Increases to Support More Investigators, Safety Videos

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Washington, DC, February 5, 2008 - The U.S. Chemical Safety Board (CSB) today announced it is requesting an annual budget of $10,600,000 for fiscal year 2009, including funds for three new accident investigators and for the continuation of the CSB's widely used safety video program.

"The new funds will allow the Chemical Safety Board to respond to more of the serious chemical accidents that occur in the U.S. each year," said Board Member William E. Wright, the agency's interim executive. "Currently, the CSB lacks enough staff to investigate more than a fraction of those accidents. In addition, we need a stable funding line for safety videos in order to continue this successful and innovative program that is helping inform businesses around the world."

The CSB's current annual budget, which covers the fiscal year ending September 30, 2008, is $9,263,000. The requested increases include $920,000 for various personnel costs, including the new investigators, and $250,000 for safety videos. The full budget justification is available from the agency's website, www.csb.gov.

Under Section 112(r) of the Clean Air Act Amendments of 1990, the CSB submits its budget request and justification independently from the Office of Management and Budget; as a result the requested amounts differ from those in the President's Budget.

The CSB is an independent federal agency charged with investigating industrial chemical accidents. The agency's board members are appointed by the president and confirmed by the Senate. CSB investigations look into all aspects of chemical accidents, including physical causes such as equipment failure as well as inadequacies in regulations, industry standards, and safety management systems.

The Board does not issue citations or fines but does make safety recommendations to plants, industry organizations, labor groups, and regulatory agencies such as OSHA and EPA. Visit our website, www.csb.gov.

For more information, contact Director of Public Affairs Dr. Daniel Horowitz, 202-261-7613, cell 202-441-6074.

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