News from Reeves & Dola, LLP 
*** R|D ALERT ***


In our previous A lert of August 22, 2016, we announced ATF had reclassified wetted Nitrocellulose containing greater than 12.6 percent nitrogen as a high explosive under the federal explosives laws. As we noted, this was a significant change in policy that ATF announced without any advance notice or input from members of the explosives or ammunition industries. 
Yesterday, ATF posted an announcement
 titled "Nitrocellulose - Update."  The text of the update is as follows:

"ATF's June 2016 Explosives Industry Newsletter included a brief discussion of Nitrocellulose and attempted to clarify the circumstances under which wetted Nitrocellulose is considered a high explosive under 27 CFR, Part 555. As with all explosives, ATF's focus is on the potential public safety risks associated with materials that can be misused or diverted to unlawful purposes. Subsequent contact from industry members who import, transport, store or employ wetted Nitrocellulose in the production of ammunition, however, has brought to our attention issues that were not fully addressed in the Newsletter and require further consultation and consideration with the industry. Accordingly, ATF has and will conduct further industry outreach concerning wetted Nitrocellulose. In the interim, previously authorized industry practices concerning wetted Nitrocellulose will not be affected."

Reeves & Dola has confirmed with ATF that the purpose of the update is to reinstate the regulatory environment that existed prior to issuance of the June 2016 Explosives Industry Newsletter. This "reset" will give ATF and members of the explosives industry the opportunity to have a meaningful dialogue on Nitrocellulose. Until ATF announces a different position, wetted Nitrocellulose containing greater than 12.6 nitrogen is not subject to the requirements of the federal explosives laws. ATF officials have expressed their commitment to working with members of the industry to arrive at an appropriate agency position. 
We will continue to keep you posted as ATF and industry members work through this challenging issue.                

The above alert is for informational purposes only and is not intended to be construed or used as legal advice. Receipt of this alert does not establish an attorney-client relationship. 

Questions about this alert can be directed to: 

Johanna Reeves: 202.715.9941  | [email protected]
Teresa Ficaretta:    202.715.9183  [email protected]
About Reeves & Dola

Reeves & Dola is a Washington, DC law firm that specializes in helping clients navigate the highly regulated and complex world of manufacturing, sales and international trade of defense and commercial products. We have a deep understanding of the federal regulatory process, and use our expertise in working with a variety of Federal agencies to assist our clients with their transactional and regulatory needs.

Reeves & Dola, LLP
1775 Eye Street, NW, Suite 1150
Washington, DC 20006