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NTU Urges House to Support Regulatory Reform Measures

by Nan Swift / /

NTU strongly urges all Representatives to vote “YES” on H.R. 1155, the “Searching for and Cutting Regulations that are Unnecessarily Burdensome (SCRUB) Act.” This legislation would establish the Retrospective Regulatory Review Commission, a panel empowered to inspect and repeal economically detrimental, ineffective, or obsolete business regulations.

Utilizing a non-partisan, common-sense approach for review, H.R. 1155 offers a means to remove some of the endless roadblocks imposed on businesses by a heavy-handed regulatory regime. According to the latest study on the federal regulatory state by the Competitive Enterprise Institute, the extra costs and fees placed upon consumers and business by the 175,268-page Code of Federal Regulations added up to an outsized $1.88 trillion aggregate burden on the U.S. economy in 2014, or $14,976 per household. The overall complexity of these rules and their myriad intricacies can slow or discourage private investment in the market.

With a goal of a 15 percent reduction in regulatory costs, H.R. 1155 sets an attainable milestone and an important first step in the fight against bureaucratic inefficiency. If successful, the Commission could significantly reduce the drag imposed by the current regulatory state on our already sluggish economy and redirect vital resources from regulatory compliance to investment and other productive activities.

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NTU also urges all Representatives to vote “YES” on H.R. 712, the “Sunshine for Regulatory Decrees and Settlements Act of 2015.” This legislation would shed much-needed light on the secretive “sue and settle” practice by which special interests extract preferred regulatory action outside the normal rule-making process.

The practice of federal agencies entering into consent decrees as a result of a collusive lawsuit with special interest groups undermines both the judicial and regulatory process, and limits accountability of federal agencies. The expedited rules that result from sue and settle impose a cost on both the economy and taxpayers through increased regulatory burdens and attorney fees. H.R. 712 would help prevent sue and settle abuse by injecting a greater degree of transparency and public participation, as intended by usual rule-making, into the process. By requiring the publishing of the intent to sue online ahead of filing, notices in the Federal Register, time for public comment and hearing, and additional reporting to Congress, the bill would help ameliorate the economic damage imposed by this underhanded practice.

Roll call votes on H.R. 1155 and H.R. 712 will be included in our annual Rating of Congress and “YES” votes will be considered the pro-taxpayer positions.

If you have any questions, please contact NTU Federal Affairs Manager Nan Swift at (703) 683-5700