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News updates

* On July 9, the Food and Drug Administration issued final rules banning the use of six different types of sulfites in fresh produce. Used to prevent wilting and discoloring, these compounds can initiate life-threatening allergic reactions in asthmatics (SN:8/17/85,p.100). The rules take effect in 30 days.

* Practical ramifications of the new U.S. Supreme Court ruling on the Gramm-Rudman-Hollings law are being tested by a lawsuit filed in U.S. District Court last week. The action, which could have broad implications for any of those whose federal funds were withheld under the law, seeks to test whether the government can keep money it has already impounded under the law. Last week the high court ruled that the role of a key actor in that impoundment--the Comptroller General, head of the General Accounting Office -- was unconstitutional (SN:7/12/86,p.22). In its suit, the National Treasury Employees Union asks that more than $1 billion in congressionally authorized 1986 cost-of-living adjustments be released to the union's more than 1 million retirees.

* On June 20, President Reagan signed the 1986 Safe Drinking Water legislation (SN:5/31/86,p.341), making it the first major environmental bill to become law this year.
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Title Annotation:sulfite ban, Supreme Court ruling on Gramm-Rudman, Safe Drinking Water Act
Publication:Science News
Date:Jul 19, 1986
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