Senator Bayer Explains Vote on Portable Fuel Containers Bill

LANSING, Mich. (Sept. 1, 2021) — Today, Sen. Rosemary Bayer (D-Beverly Hills) released the following statement after voting against House Bill 4272, which would exempt gas cans made and used in Michigan from 2009 federal regulations of portable fuel containers (PFCs). The bill goes against long-standing Supreme Court precedent and attempts to undermine the Commerce Clause of the Constitution.

“The name in and of itself, ‘portable fuel containers,’ indicates these devices will inevitably move outside of Michigan. This bill is unconstitutional and goes against one of the federal government’s few oversights, and it is not a part of what we could, or should, be doing in the Michigan Senate at a time when folks are looking for jobs, continuing to navigate a deadly pandemic, or trying to recover their homes from natural disasters made worse by climate change. Therefore, I could not vote in support of this bill.”

Federal regulations are intended to prevent the release and spillage of gasoline and gas vapor. Currently, new portable fuel containers sold in the U.S. are required to have child safety features and methods of restriction against the release of volatile organic compounds. HB 4272 would allow Michigan portable fuel containers to skirt federal regulations if the container is only used in the state.

Sen. Bayer serves as the Minority Vice Chair on the Senate Environmental Quality Committee where the bill was previously voted out of before coming to the Senate floor. She also voted no on the bill in committee.

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