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Trump Focuses on Repealing Regulations

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

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President Donald J. Trump's plan to roll back federal regulations is in play.

Trump signed an executive order Friday (Feb. 24) that establishes task forces within executive departments to identify regulations that might be ripe for repeal or modification under the new administration, and gives them 90 days to report back with recommendations.

The White House
© / Triggerphoto

President Trump's Executive Order on Enforcing the Regulatory Agenda calls for executive branch departments to identify existing regulations that might be eligible for repeal or modification.

The Executive Order on Enforcing the Regulatory Agenda calls on executive agencies to designate one official as its Regulatory Reform Officer.

The RRO will work with other agency officials on finding regulations currently on the books that the administration might want to eliminate in order to comply with an earlier executive order that requires the elimination of two regulations for every new regulation put into place.

Trump first announced plans to roll back regulations in this fashion back in November.

Guidelines for Repeal

The order calls on the RROs and their task forces to concentrate on rooting out regulations that:

  • Might be eliminating jobs or inhibiting job creation;
  • Are outdated or unnecessary;
  • Impose costs that exceed their benefits;
  • “Create a serious inconsistency or otherwise interfere with regulatory reform initiatives”;
  • Are inconsistent with section 515 of the Treasury and General Government Appropriations Act of 2001, which deals with the quality and objectivity of information disseminated by government entities; or
  • Derive from past executive orders that have since been rescinded.

The order, as issued, affects all federal departments, but allows for a waiver for agencies that can prove they rarely issue regulations.

There are some 80,000 pages in the Federal Register, where all regulations are published, according to NPR. To actually repeal a rule, federal agencies must go through the notice and public-comment process just as they must to create a rule, the report said, citing expert Susan Dudley, who heads the Regulatory Studies Center at George Washington University.

Dudley told the news bureau that recently approved regulations may be the exception, as lawmakers might use the Congressional Review Act to repeal rules by a simple majority vote.

Regulations Affecting Coatings Pending

A number of new regulations that may affect the paints and coatings industry were put into place during the final year of the Obama administration.

For instance, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration approved new rules regarding electronic reporting, which also includes provisions related to workplace safety incentives. OSHA also put into place new rules on workplace exposure to respirable crystalline silica and beryllium, both of which could affect abrasive blasting operations.

The Environmental Protection Agency is gearing up to begin enforcement of changes to the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act as it governs generators of hazardous waste. The new regulations, which go into effect in April, could affect both coating manufacturers and field coating removal operations.

And some legislators have been working to find ways to circumvent the Fair Pay and Safe Workplaces Act, which was set to go into effect last fall but remains in legal limbo. That order would subject business receiving federal contracts of over $500,000 to increased scrutiny regarding past violations of labor, environmental and other rules.

Other countries have similar policies when it comes to regulations. NPR reports, "Canada and Britain both have policies that require old regulations be eliminated each time a new one is enacted."


Tagged categories: Department of Labor; EPA; Good Technical Practice; Government; Government contracts; OSHA; President Trump; Regulations

Comment from Jesse Melton, (3/1/2017, 8:46 AM)

Canada and Britain have functional healthcare, wage and benefit regulations that don't hate your family and good manners too. We are far too underdeveloped for any reasoned approach to organizing our legislative cellar. If we're going to let private policy firms delete laws they don't want we might as well just torch it all and start over.

Comment from John McCormac, (3/2/2017, 10:52 AM)

Ha! Canada & Britain's healthcare systems are a joke; their wage and benefit systems are bringing down their economies, and their regulations effectively limit freedoms and liberties. Ours were approaching those under the previous administration, so any sort of regulatory reform is a welcome approach. To claim private policy firms are deleting laws is nonsense without evidence. While Trump and some of his proposed policies have issues, the reduction of unnecessary and burdensome regulations is long overdue.

Comment from Neil Surplice, (3/5/2017, 4:49 PM)

John. Would you care to elaborate on why you think Canada & Britain's healthcare systems are a joke and how the US system is superior?? Have you lived in either country?I have lived and worked in both as well as the US, am currently in NZ and my own personal experience is out of all of them the US healthcare system was by far and away the worst. I'm not saying that any of the systems are perfect, far from it and I'm unable to comment on the current situation in the US but I strongly suspect that, on balance, Obamacare is a positive step. Prior to Obamacare good healthcare was only open to those with enough money and money/greed is why the world is in such disarray with the rich/poor gap far too wide.

Comment from M. Halliwell, (3/6/2017, 11:09 AM)

Canada's healthcare system does have its shortcomings...funding and wait times being the two biggest...but considering that private health insurance is simply not affordable to so many Americans, I'll stick to what I have north of the border.

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