"Independence" Day: ACIL Meets on Capitol Hill

  ACIL members Mike Chang (Restek), Allison Mackenzie (Babcock Labs), and Joe Konschnik (Restek) meeting with Colorado Senator Cory Gardener at his DC office

ACIL members Mike Chang (Restek), Allison Mackenzie (Babcock Labs), and Joe Konschnik (Restek) meeting with Colorado Senator Cory Gardener at his DC office

by Allison Mackenzie, Babcock Labs CEO

Last week I attended the American Council of Independent Laboratories (ACIL) Policies and Practices (P2) Conference in Washington, D.C. This annual conference is comprised of educational sessions that combine government relations and business practices in support of ACIL’s mission to provide the independent testing community with advocacy, education, and alliances that enable members to better address environmental and product risks to the public.

Most notably, one full day of the conference was spent on Capitol Hill meeting with various Congressional representatives. In addition to members attending special session meetings, ACIL and its guests delivered a Congressional Briefing on the value of 3rd party independent testing and conformity assessment under the Energy Star program. The briefing, which was sponsored by Congressmen McKinley (R-WV) and Loebsack (D-IA), explained that 3rd party independent testing and conformity assessment are paramount to consumer confidence in the products and resources they use, such as energy-efficient washing machines and refrigerators.

Addressing congressional concerns regarding the cost and viability of continuing the Energy Star program, ACIL and International Federation of Inspection Agencies (IFIA) representatives explained the value of the program to the consumer. The speakers shed light on the cost effectiveness and impartiality of independent testing and the success of the program beyond our borders, around the globe. 

Moreover, the presenters illuminated the fact that 3rd party testing employs thousands of people in the U.S. at large and accounts for many small businesses, much like independent testing laboratories. As an independent commercial testing laboratory and certified employee-owned Small Business Enterprise (SBE), Babcock Laboratories employs 70 Inland Empire residents, contributing to the economic growth and well-being of our local community, the State of California, and the nation as a whole. These economic benefits, in addition to the environmental and public health benefits afforded by 3rd-party-accredited analytical data, are part of what make independent laboratories indispensable.

I am proud to have represented Babcock Labs and other independent laboratories in my conversations with our Congressional leaders, and feel confident that our nation will continue to value the numerous benefits offered by 3rd party independent testing and conformity assessment programs.  

Babcock Laboratories is a proud member of ACIL. View our certificate.