OIRA releases final hit list and new reg report

Wednesday was a big day for OIRA: the office released both the final selections from the industry-nominated hit list and this year's annual draft report on the costs and benefits of regulations. Hit List: What the White House released is a selection of 76 out of the original 189 anti-reg nominations for the hit list. These are the hit list suggestions that the White House and the agencies are endorsing as anti-regulatory priorities. This new release gives us a roadmap for only part of what we saw in the December report. This new release only reveals what the White House has endorsed from the hit list items nominated by the public. Missing from the new release is the agencies’ response, and any action timelines for, the other two worrisome lists from the December report: the White House’s own hit list nominations (the “unfinished business” table, which included having EPA grant variances from safe drinking water standards to poor communities, and “streamlining” HUD’s predatory lending rules), and the White House fast-track list (identifying initiatives in early stages of the rulemaking process — among them, the mercury rule, and adding more “flexibility” to Title IX regs — that the White House wants the agencies to propel to the top of their priorities). Draft Report: OIRA is required to produce, every year, a report on the cumulative costs and benefits of regulations. This report has often been the vehicle for anti-regulatory initiatives -- last year's draft report, for example, called for industry to submit nominations for the anti-regulatory hit list, described above. This year, the report calls for suggestions to improve transparency in the implementation of the Data Quality Act, as well as suggestions for look-back studies comparing actual costs of regulatory compliance with industry's ex ante estimates of those costs. We will have more detailed analysis of each release in the next issue of The Watcher, coming in two weeks, and on the Regulatory Policy web pages.
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