Week in Regulation

Deregulatory Measures Continue to Flow

The past week in rulemaking saw a handful of deregulatory measures addressing such varied topics as swine inspection, defense procurement, and environmental waste management. Between both final and proposed rulemakings, agencies published roughly $210 million in total net cost savings ($20.5 million annually). However, two rulemakings put forth a combined 97,216 hours of new paperwork burdens. The per capita regulatory burden for 2018 is negative $3.96.

Regulatory Toplines

  • New Proposed Rules: 35
  • New Final Rules: 65
  • 2018 Total Pages of Regulation: 4,844
  • 2018 Final Rules: -$1.3 Billion
  • 2018 Proposed Rules: $713.4 Million

Tracking Regulatory Modernization

The most notable deregulatory action was a Department of Agriculture (USDA) proposal regarding the “Modernization of Swine Slaughter Inspection.” Specifically, the proposed rule seeks “to amend the Federal meat inspection regulations to establish a new inspection system for market hog slaughter establishments that has been demonstrated to provide public health protection at least equivalent to the existing inspection system.” While USDA estimates that there will be some costs involved under new safety requirements (with more than 57,000 hours of new paperwork), it also estimates that “industrial efficiency” improvements under the new program will outweigh such burdens, producing roughly $25 million net cost savings annually.

There were also two final rules that contribute to cost savings in the “regulatory budget” established by Executive Order (EO) 13,771. The first, from the Environmental Protection Agency, would remove certain monitoring requirements for “pressure relief devices” that the agency now finds to be extraneous. This action saves affected entities $4.3 million on an annual basis. The other rule is a Department of Defense measure to streamline procurement submission requirements, producing $100,000 in annualized savings.

According to American Action Forum (AAF) analysis, since the start of FY 2018 (beginning Oct. 1, 2017), executive agencies have promulgated 18 deregulatory actions with quantified cost savings against 5 regulatory measures that impose costs, under the rubric created by EO 13,771 and the administration’s subsequent guidance document on the matter. These rules combine for a net annual savings of roughly $613.8 million. The administration’s goal for FY 2018 is $687 million in net annual savings.

Click here to view AAF’s examination of the administration’s progress under the “one-in, two-out” executive order through the end of Fiscal Year 2017.

State of Major Obama-Era Initiatives

Based on total lifetime costs of the regulations, the Affordable Care Act has imposed costs of $53 billion in final state and private-sector burdens and 176.9 million annual paperwork hours.

Since passage, the Dodd-Frank financial reform legislation has produced more than 82.9 million final paperwork burden hours and imposed $38.9 billion in direct compliance costs.

Total Burdens

Since January 1, the federal government has published $567.1 million in net costs savings ($1.3 billion from final rules) and new paperwork burdens amounting to 1.5 million hours (however, this includes 709,502 hours cut under final rules). Click here for the latest Reg Rodeo findings.


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