Scalise Introduces Bill to Cap Regulatory Spending

Jul 24, 2014

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Congressmen Steve Scalise (LA-01) and Doug Collins (GA-09) today introduced legislation, the National Regulatory Budget Act of 2014, which establishes a new process for the estimation and reporting of the economic costs of existing and new federal regulations.  The bill also provides for a regulatory budget process where Congress would establish caps for each federal agency.

“Radical regulations strangle small business and increase the costs for hard-working taxpayers,” said Congressman Scalise.  “This much-needed legislation makes unelected bureaucrats think twice before proposing job-killing rules and regulations by increasing transparency and accountability.  If our economy is ever to recover from six years of the president’s failed economic policies, we must rein in the out of control costs of this Administration’s radical regulations.  I applaud Congressman Collins for joining me in introducing this bill and for being a leader in the House on holding this Administration accountable.”

“Our federal budget tells Americans how much money the government spends.  The national Regulatory Budget would tell them how much the government is really costing them,” Congressman Collins said.  “Too many regulations, however they were intended, cost hardworking Americans in money and in opportunity.  We can’t bring about reform and relief if we can’t identify the roots of the regulatory burden, and this is a straightforward and transparent way to do that.  Congressman Scalise is a trusted leader on regulatory reform and I know with his leadership, we can get this moving.”

“Regulations are another impediment to investment.  For free enterprise to work, it needs a reasonable regulatory system that ensures safety, protects consumers and achieves fair competition,” said U.S. Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL).  Putting the federal government on a National Regulatory Budget will help restrain the job-killing impulses of regulators and reduce obstacles to innovation that creates jobs.  I appreciate the leadership of Representatives Scalise and Collins for leading the effort in the House.  I hope this doesn’t ultimately turn into another example of the House acting on commonsense, pro-jobs legislation only to see Harry Reid’s Senate fail to act on it.”

Specifically, the National Regulatory Budget Act would establish the Office of Regulatory Analysis (OAR), which would be required to provide an annual regulatory analysis of federal rules for the upcoming fiscal year and their estimated cost on the economy.  The legislation also creates a National Regulatory Budget, which allows Congress to set a cap on the total economic cost of new federal regulations to be implemented in the coming fiscal year.  Congress would also set caps on the regulatory cost allowed by individual agencies.

The legislation requires that all newly proposed regulations receive an OAR estimate before being implemented.  Agencies that fail to comply with the OAR will be subject to a 0.5 percent reduction in their appropriation based on their previous budget amount.

According to the Competitive Enterprise Institute, federal regulations cost businesses $1.8 trillion in 2013 – more than the Gross Domestic Product of Canada.  Federal regulations cost the average American family $14,974 annually.  The 2013 Federal Register contained nearly 3,500 regulations totaling 79,000 pages – the fourth largest Federal Register in history.

Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) introduced the National Regulatory Budget Act of 2014 (S. 2153) in March of this year.  It has the support of 12 Senate cosponsors.  The bill has been endorsed by the Competitive Enterprise Institute, National Small Business Association, and Center for Freedom and Prosperity.