Clinton's Pesticide Bill Aims to Protect Children
PROTECTING the safety of children is a key goal in pesticide-control bills introduced April 26 for the Clinton administration.
Seven months after describing its proposals, the administration has put them into bills that will be considered by four congressional committees.
The proposals will run up against a less-restrictive bill, supported by the food industry and American Farm Bureau Federation, which has 220 sponsors - a majority - in the House and 20 in the Senate.
The administration proposal would curtail the system of considering economic impact on farmers in deciding whether a pesticide should be allowed in the food supply.
The health-based standard would be the only one used. It would replace often-conflicting standards in food-safety laws, some of which allow several levels of pesticide residue, while others allow none at all. The tolerances would have to recognize the eating habits and size of infants and children, who, for their body weight, eat more fruits and vegetables than do adults.
The proposal says the Environmental Protection Agency would allow some pesticide residue in foods unless the chemicals posed ``a potential dietary risk of cancer in humans.''
When setting levels, the EPA would have to consider ``all other anticipated consumer exposures for which there is reliable information'' - such as exposure through drinking water, lawn chemicals, and household bug killers. The changes would require a wealth of new data from the government and from the pesticide industry, which would have seven years to demonstrate that 9,000 pesticide tolerances fit the new standards. Battle over Nixon papers
THE fight that President Nixon began 20 years ago for control of his presidential papers and tapes will continue despite his death.
The late president's lawyer, R. Stan Mortensen, said April 25 the fight would continue, but he would not say whether the legal pursuit was requested by Nixon before his death, or if the heirs or estate had requested it.
The latest legal action was a motion filed about a week ago, Mr. Mortensen said.
Just months after he resigned in 1974, Nixon began filing lawsuits to stop the release of the records.
Mortensen has represented Nixon during 20 years of legal wrangling over which of Nixon's papers and tapes, seized by the government when he resigned, should be made public and which should be considered Nixon's personal property.
Among the documents are at least 200 hours of taped conversations and 150,000 pages of presidential papers. Only 63 hours of the tapes, provided to the federal grand jury in the Watergate affair, have been made public.
The regulations restrict the release of purely personal or political matters or those covered by executive privilege, communications between a president and his advisers. Clinton asks ban on semiautomatics
PRESIDENT Clinton made a strong plea to the public and Congress April 25 to ban 19 types of semiautomatic weapons as part of a crime bill. ``The weapons of choice for drug traffickers, gang members and paramilitary extremist groups are these assault weapons,'' Mr. Clinton said at a White House ceremony honoring crime victims.
``I want to ask the law-abiding citizens of this country to tell Congress that it's okay to vote for this and take these kinds of weapons off our streets.
Last November, the Senate passed a ban on semiautomatic weapons as part of its crime bill. A similar bill, passed by the House of Representatives last week, did not include the ban, so the issue will have to be resolved by a House-Senate conference committee or in separate legislation.
Clinton said if the House could pass the ban quickly, it could be included in the final version of the crime bill.