Funding cut for product lead testing

February 16, 2011 12:00:00 AM PST
There are more findings of dangerous levels of lead found in jewelry sold mainly to teenagers and at the same time, a move in Washington to reduce oversight.

The Bay Area's Center for Environmental Health hasn't stopped its own oversight. The group found high levels of lead in jewelry sold at Styles for Less stores in Hayward and Fremont. Ironically some of the jewelry is marked "lead-free."

Tests showed metal parts contained up to 92 percent lead. The state attorney general sent a notice of violation to Styles for Less for selling lead-tainted jewelry.

In Washington, Rep. Jackie Speier, D-San Mateo, said this is no time to reduce consumer product oversight as Republican legislators proposed.

"Great, so let's have Chinese companies pour more tainted toys, more lead and cadmium filled toys for our kids," she said.

A Styles for Less spokesman said the company was unaware of a lead problem and now is pulling the jewelry off the shelves.