The Regulatory Review for January 13 – 26, 2018

Welcome to our Regulatory Action Center’s second Regulatory Review. Our Regulatory Action Center is proud to update you with our favorite tidbits from the swamp. Our goal is to smash the barrier between bureaucracy and the American people by keeping you up-to-date on the world of regulatory policy and reform. Check back every two weeks for another edition!

In this edition, we’re highlighting:

1) Video of the week: How Dirty Laws Trash the Environment. Federal agencies ignore property rights when it comes to protecting innocent people from pollution. Courts often do a better job.

2) Statistic of the week: Acting Director Mulvaney requests $0 for Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) in Q2. The CFPB currently operates with a $171 million surplus, enough to cover the $145 million quarterly operating expenses. Mulvaney wants to reduce the surplus to zero for deficit reduction. We think $0 is a good permanent budget for this unconstitutional agency.

3) Regulations kill home food sales by forcing food safety standards intended for restaurants and grocery stores on the kitchens of small business entrepreneurs. Home food sales are particularly important for rural women with lower incomes. Have you ever worried about safety while eating a home-cooked meal with grandma?

4) Trump-appointed regulator outlines plans for banking deregulation. Improving clarity and reducing burdens from “stress tests” as well as size-based restrictions on financial institutions will be a 2018 regulatory priority. The goal is to ensure that heavy regulations only apply to banks with size large enough to impact financial markets. The Trump administration wants to make cost-benefit analysis a staple for considering new financial regulations.

5) Don’t fear the federal hiring freeze, it won’t hurt anybody. Employment at the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has remained at about 1,000 people since 1980. Fast forward to today, and the workforce has drastically expanded while reducing work-related injuries. Clearly, companies are fixing safety problems independently from government.

6) EPA repeals Obama-era regulations on public lands oil drilling. The Obama administration sought to deter public lands drilling by wrapping companies in red tape. Federal Courts were likely to strike down this regulation in the future for overreaching executive authority.

7) Federal lands should be sold to ranchers who use them. Federal management of lands rented by ranchers causes perverse incentives such as short-term overuse. Overuse happens because ranchers are often uncertain about their future rent status, causing them to shirk investment for the future. If ranchers owned land, they would have better incentive to keep it environmentally sustainable.

8) Burger King Doesn’t Want You to Have the Internet Your Way. Burger King decided to wade into the wrong side of the debate about public utility-style regulation of the Internet. Don’t ask us why… but check out our response.

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