Law & Order

White House and Congress Pledge Regulatory Review

President Obama issued an Executive Order directing all federal agencies to review their regulations in an attempt to eliminate rules that hinder economic growth. In Congress, Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA), the new chairman of the House Oversight and Investigations Committee, has asked the business community, trade groups and research organizations to identify federal regulations that are restraining the nation’s economic recovery.

The President’s Executive Order reminds government agencies of their responsibility to take flexible approaches to rulemaking so as to impose the least burden necessary when achieving regulatory objectives. While many rules are required by law, the order notes that agencies usually have the ability to create alternative regulatory proposals for small versus large businesses based on differences in size and resources. There is no specific time table for agencies to review their current rules. The order is viewed as an effort to repair relations with the business community and a reminder to the agencies to strike the proper balance between protecting the public and not interfering with economic growth.

In the House, Chairman Issa observed that federal agencies circulated 43 “major” regulations in the last fiscal year, with a projected cost on business of $28 billion. The House Oversight Committee is expected to hold multiple hearings in the coming months to identify existing and proposed regulations that stifle the economy and job growth. For details, contact Dan Sadowski at