Senate panel passes chemical safety bill

Senate panel passes chemical safety bill
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A Senate panel passed a bill aimed at preventing chemical spills Thursday, which a group of Senate Democrats proposed in response to the West Virginia leak earlier this year.

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After working across party lines, the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee passed the Chemical Safety and Drinking Water Protection Act.

Co-sponsored by Democratic Sens. Barbara BoxerBarbara BoxerBarbara Boxer recounts harassment on Capitol Hill: ‘The entire audience started laughing’ 100 years of the Blue Slip courtesy Four more lawmakers say they’ve been sexually harassed by colleagues in Congress MORE (Calif.), Joe ManchinJoseph (Joe) ManchinDemocrats scramble to contain Franken fallout  Overnight Finance: House passes sweeping tax bill in huge victory for GOP | Senate confirms banking regulator | Mulvaney eyed for interim head of consumer agency Overnight Regulation: Senators unveil bipartisan gun background check bill | FCC rolls back media regs | Family leave credit added to tax bill | Senate confirms banking watchdog MORE (W.Va.) and Jay RockefellerJay RockefellerOvernight Tech: Trump nominates Dem to FCC | Facebook pulls suspected baseball gunman's pages | Uber board member resigns after sexist comment Trump nominates former FCC Dem for another term Obama to preserve torture report in presidential papers MORE (W.Va.), the bill affords states additional oversight power of chemical facilities like the Freedom Industries facility along Elk River, which spilled a coal-cleaning contaminant in January.

The spill left 300,000 residents without clean water for several days.

Sen. David Vitter (R-La.), ranking member on the committee, supported the bill after working with Boxer to address Republicans' concerns.