May 18, 2023
A Down Year for Small Businesses’ Federal Advocate
The Office of Advocacy of the Small Business Administration is a relatively small, obscure agency with a rather unique mission: to be “the independent voice for small business in the federal government.” In a new insight, Director of Regulatory Policy Dan Goldbeck walks through the agency’s most recent annual report — which shows that fiscal year 2022 has been its least successful in a decade — and examines underlying trends presenting concerns that agencies are not taking the regulatory issues of small businesses as seriously as they have in prior years.
- Over the past decade, the Small Business Administration Office of Advocacy has contributed to regulatory changes that saved small businesses nearly $17 billion in initial costs and $10.7 billion in recurring costs.
- In the most recent fiscal year, however, reported costs savings from Office of Advocacy input translated to only $73.5 million, which marks the lowest such total across the past 10 years despite both a record level of regulatory activity and the agency engaging federal agencies at its highest rate over that span.
- This notable divergence from recent trends provides an opportunity to revisit what policies are in place to ensure federal agencies take more seriously the unique issues facing small businesses in the regulatory process.