DIANE KATZ: Reforming Regulation to Spur Economic Growth.
During the Obama administration, the nation’s regulatory burden increased by an astonishing $122 billion annually, according to analyses by Heritage Foundation experts, or “nearly double the $68 billion in private-sector costs imposed under the Administration of President George W. Bush.”
As large as that cumulative cost is, however, it does not account for the total costs of the Obama administration rules. The $122 billion figure includes only major regulations, not the thousands of administrative rules issued every year. It also does not capture significant but intangible costs such as lost innovation or violations of individual liberty.
On January 30, 2017, President Donald Trump issued Executive Order 13771, which requires agencies to offset the cost of any new significant regulation (or guidance) with at least two deregulatory actions.
The executive order also established a regulatory budgeting system under which the Office of Management and Budget assigns to agencies a cap on the amount of “incremental costs” that would be allowed for the fiscal year.
This regulatory budgeting is intended to inject a modicum of economic discipline into rule-making. If agencies are compelled to restrict the costs imposed on the public, they must engage in a type of rolling retrospective review of the vast accumulation of rules that comprise more than 185,000 pages in the Code of Federal Regulations.
The Office of Management and Budget’s Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs projects that the fiscal year 2020 caps will reduce regulatory costs by $51.6 billion (in present value).