House approves CPSC bill, other noncontroversial bills

It would also allow the sale of used children's products that may not meet the new thresholds and ease lead content rules for bicycles and all-terrain vehicles.

House Energy and Commerce Committee ranking member Henry Waxman (D-Calif.), who initially resisted changes to the 2008 law in the last Congress, spoke Monday afternoon in favor of the bill. He said the bill represents a compromise between Republicans who wanted to ease CPSC rules more and Democrats who wanted to avoid eroding the strict standards of the agency.

"It is a compromise bill in the best sense," Waxman said. The bill was passed in a 421-2 vote.

Three other bills were debated briefly today, two of which were approved. H.R. 398 which would make it easier for married couples in which one spouse has temporary citizenship status to get permanent status when the other spouse is serving overseas in the U.S. Armed Services. This bill was passed 426-0.

Lawmakers also passed H.R. 1933 in a 407-17 vote. This bill would extend a program allowing non-resident nurses to work in the U.S. in areas where there is a shortage of nursing professionals. A current work visa program for nurses has expired, and this bill would reauthorize it and allow people receiving these visas to stay in the U.S. for six years, not three as was allowed in the prior iteration of the program.

Also today, the House debated H.R. 2480, which would reauthorize the Administrative Conference of the United States (ACUS) through 2014. This independent agency aims to find ways to reduce the federal regulatory burden on companies.

The bill would cut ACUS funding by about 10 percent for the next three years, putting its budget at $2.9 million per year. A vote on this bill was postponed.

-- This story was updated at 2:58 p.m. to reflect the votes.

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