SawStop Inches Closer to Reality – California’s Liberal Mandate

California’s Table-Saw Safety Bill

Here we go again folks. I hate to say it but we are on the brink of total disaster when it comes to making free choices about the tools we use on a day to day basis. Steven Gass is at  it again and instead of waiting on the US Government to mandate a table-saw safety bill that would forever change table-saws he’s somehow convinced lawmakers in California to do just that. With a population of 38 million people he’s betting that if California passes the law, manufacturers will likely cave and start paying him a hefty price to use his patented technology.

I’ve written about this issue several times, here, here, and here. Frequent readers know how I feel and know that I’m sick to my stomach about this possible intrusion of privacy and personal choice. My bigger fear though is how Mr. Gass is already planning on expanding this issue to most every power tool we own. His motives are very clear, this is about money and nothing more. If he truly felt like protecting users of power tools then he would have made an offer to the tool companies that was fair, reasonable (he’d still be a multi-millionaire), and affordable. The fact is he asked for so much money that no one was willing to pay him.

Anyone that doesn’t believe his motive only needs to read about the lobbying he’s been doing in both Washington DC and California. Just last month Gass gave $46,400 in political contributions (LA Times) to almost 30 lawmakers in California. The list also includes a $2,500 donation to the Bills author.

It’s Not Too Late

First let me say I have nothing against Mr. Gass selling his saws to willing and able buyers. He makes an exceptional saw and no one is taking away the amazing invention that he created. What I have a problem with is he and our Government dictating what tool we use. Let’s make one thing perfectly clear, table-saws do not cut users. Users make poor decisions that result in injuries. Cars, guns, knives and many other objects do not kill people, people make poor decisions that result in death and injury.

So what can you do? You need to speak up, you need to write to your State Senators and Representatives. You need to check out information at the Power Tool Institute site. They have lots of great information on how you can send a clear message to our Government.

If we the users of power tools don’t stand up and protect our freedom to choose the tools we work with, then we’ll be left paying a hefty premium so that Mr. Gass’ estate will forever get richer and richer.

About the author

Todd Fratzel

Todd Fratzel is the Editor-in-Chief and Founder of Tool Box Buzz, and the President of Front Steps Media, LLC, a web based media company focused on the Home Improvement and Construction Industry.He is also the Principal Engineer for United Construction Corp., located in Newport, NH. In his capacity at United he oversees the Residential and Commercial Building Division along with all Design-Build projects.He is also the editor of Home Construction & Improvement.

@tfratzelTodd Fratzel

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  1. Jeff Williams

    I wonder if any new saws were put on hold to see how this all shook out in the US government. I can only recall a couple portable table saws released in the last year.

    1. Todd Fratzel

      I’ve asked that question a few times and the answer I get is everyone is continuing to develop their saws based on the latest blade guard that Bosch, Delta and many others are using.

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