In the early morning of Saturday, September 22nd, the United States Senate passed language that is nearly identical to the Better Use of Refrigerator Regulations (BURR) Act introduced by Rep. Bruce Braley (IA-01) and Rep. Lynn Westmoreland (GA-03). This bill removes burdensome government regulations that threatened the future of manufacturing of refrigerated deli-style display cases in the United States.
Lennox Industries, Inc., which makes the deli-style display cases covered by the regulation, has a manufacturing facility in Marshalltown, Iowa, that employs about 1,000 people. The adoption of this bill will help protect Iowa manufacturing jobs.
"I'm proud to continue working across the aisle in the House and Senate to remove these regulations that are putting Iowa jobs at risk," said Braley. "The Department of Energy had effectively outlawed refrigerated display cases found in grocery stores and delis and that was completely unfair to manufacturing in Iowa. We're making progress to fix this misguided regulation. Passing this language is an example of getting results by putting politics aside, and coming together to fight for common sense solutions that save jobs in Iowa."
The problem remedied by this language stems from the federal government's interpretation of a 2005 law that increases energy efficiency standards for appliances. The Department of Energy believed it was required by law to include refrigerated deli display cases in the same category as standard refrigerators. However, the inherent design of such display cases makes it impossible for the equipment to reach the minimum efficiency standards set forth for refrigerators in the 2005 law, effectively outlawing their manufacture in the United States.
Braley and Westmoreland's Better Use of Refrigerator Regulations Act creates a new energy efficiency category for refrigerated deli-style display cases, effectively reversing the regulation and safeguarding the product's continued manufacture in Marshalltown and other locations in the US. This language passed the Senate as an amendment to H.R. 4850, the Enabling Energy Saving Innovations Act. It previously passed the House with overwhelming support on June 21, 2012, as an amendment to HR 4480, the Strategic Energy Production Act of 2012.
A copy of the Better Use of Refrigerator Regulations Amendment can be downloaded at the following link: http://go.usa.gov/vQM