Prior to Congress' spring recess, the House Homeland Security Subcommittee on Emerging Threats, Cybersecurity and Science and Technology approved a bill (H.R. 1680), which sets new limitations on ammonium nitrate sales. Ammonium nitrate is of course a chemical commonly found in agriculture fertilizer that has explosive properties.

If passed, the legislation would instruct the U.S. Homeland Security Secretary to regulate ammonium nitrate sales and purchase, which has been used by terrorists to make bombs. Here are some of the details:

  • Create a registry of ammonium nitrate purchasers.
  • Require owners of ammonium nitrate facilities to be registered.
  • Give the secretary the power to fine owners up to $50,000 for unregistered sales of the substance.
  • Require ammonium nitrate facility owners to maintain sales transaction records for three years.

A similar bill was approved by the full committee last June, but it never reached the House floor. A full committee markup is expected the week after the House and Senate return from the spring recess.

Source: National Pork Producers Council