Regulatory Action Center Review – September 9, 2019

Welcome to FreedomWorks Foundation’s seventeenth regulatory review of 2019! Our Regulatory Action Center proudly updates you with our favorite tidbits from the swamp. We want to smash barriers between bureaucracy and the American people by delivering regulatory news straight to FreedomWorks activists. Check back in two weeks for the next edition.

1) Video of the Week: It’s no small secret that excessive government regulation hurts business. Yet, what some fail to realize is that stringent regulations have a tendency to hurt small, local business far more than large corporations who are more adequately equipped to bear the costs of regulation. In this weeks video, PragerU outlines that dangers that would come of more strictly regulating the relationship between local franchises and their parent organizations.

2) EPA Wants to Revoke California Auto Regulation Powers: “The Trump administration is preparing a plan to strip California’s authority to set tougher auto efficiency regulations than the federal government, even while agencies continue finalizing a rollback of national standards, according to people familiar with the matter. The matter is still under consideration and no final decision has been made though one is expected in the coming days, said the people, who requested anonymity to discuss the matter.”

3) CMS targets healthcare providers’ affiliates in new rule: “As part of the CMS’ ‘Program Integrity Enhancements to the Provider Enrollment Process’ going into effect Nov. 4, its new ‘affiliations’ provision allows authorities to bar individuals and organizations that ‘pose an undue risk of fraud, waste or abuse based on their relationships with other sanctioned entities.’ Medicare, Medicaid and CHIP providers will have to disclose any current or previous affiliation with an organization that has uncollected debt, has had a payment suspension under a federal healthcare program, has been excluded from those programs, or has had billing privileges denied or rescinded.”

4) TSA Bans Coke Bottles That Resemble Fictional Star Wars Explosives: “The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) has banned passengers from bringing special bottles of Coca-Cola sold at Disney theme parks onto planes because the containers resemble the fictional "thermal detonator" devices in the Star Wars universe…’It could create concern that it’s the real thing,’ TSA spokesperson Jim Gregory told the Orange County Register, which first reported on the ban. Really? Let’s think through this. Anyone familiar enough with Star Wars to recognize a Coke bottle made to resemble a thermal detonator is also going to be aware of the fact that thermal detonators are fictional. Anyone else is just going to think, "Wow, that’s an odd-looking Coke bottle."

5) Trump administration walks back decision to end protections for migrants who receive medical care: “The Trump administration reportedly said on Monday that it is reconsidering putting an end to a policy that enables migrants to not be deported while they or their family members receive lifesaving medical treatment. United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) faced widespread backlash after it severed the “deferred action” program on Aug. 7 without notifying the public, The New York Times reported.”

6) A DEA Agent Got a Drug Dealer to Buy a Truck So the Agent Could Seize it Through Asset Forfeiture: “A former Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) agent was convicted Tuesday of lying and falsifying records to hide a long-running scheme to skim money and other property during drug busts. In one scheme, he convinced a confidential informant buy a truck so the agent could seize it through asset forfeiture. A New Orleans jury found former DEA special agent Chad Scott guilty of seven counts of perjury, obstruction of justice, and falsifying government records.”

7) Full speed ahead for deregulation train: “Labor Secretary Patrick Pizzella knows he is likely to be demoted by the Trump administration before the end of the year, but doesn’t mind. He is, in fact, eagerly helping the process along by setting things up for his expected replacement, Eugene Scalia, the former Labor Department solicitor under the Bush administration. Pizzella is only the department’s acting secretary and still views himself as the deputy secretary. He took over after Alexander Acosta stepped down in July, but still does mostly the same work: presiding over the administration’s deregulatory agenda.”

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