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Blog

If You Build the Blockchain, Regulators Will Come

The hardest part of drafting any new regulation is establishing a definition. In fact, most of the policy work is in the definition and there are alarmingly few policy considerations after something is defined as a covered entity. The definition of cryptocurrency has already proved problematic for regulators. Essentially, to commodities regulators, virtual currency is a commodity. For bank regulators, it is a bank. For securities regulators, it is a security. For those who regulate money transmitters, it is a money transmitter. For the purpose of property taxes, it is a property. Everyone wants a stake in the new world of virtual currency.

07/12/2016
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Blog

USDA Spends $19.9M on One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish...Catfish?

The Senate recently passed legislation that would result in a minor victory against the regulatory state and for the legislative branch reclaiming its powers. The measure is now pending in the House, where Republican leadership should bring the measure up for a vote. What is the target of this unnecessary regulation? Catfish. Yes, catfish.

06/09/2016
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Blog

Obama Vows to Veto Bill to Block Fiduciary Rule, Industry Groups Prepare to Sue

Last week, the Senate voted to rescind the Department of Labor’s “Fiduciary Rule” using the Congressional Review Act. Under the Congressional Review Act, the House and the Senate reserve the right to jointly overrule unnecessary or burdensome acts of regulatory overreach.

05/31/2016
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Blog

Regulations Work Overtime to Hurt Employees, Small Businesses

Last week, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) announced revisions to the proposed rules interpreting the Fair Labor Standard Act’s regulations on the overtime compensation pay of white-collar, salaried workers. Currently, salaried employees making more than $23,660 annually are exempt from the DOL requirement that employers pay time-and-a-half for each hour over 40 hours weekly. The final rule, with several key changes to the proposed rule, will extend overtime pay protections to over 40 million American workers.

05/24/2016
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Blog

Bill's Not Just a Bill. And He's Not Just Sitting Here on Capitol Hill.

As the "drop dead date" for Obama administration regulations draws near, we are expecting a flood of "midnight regulations." Regulatory agencies, in an eleventh-hour attempt to pass new rules before the start of the next administration, will make a huge push in ushering in new proposals. In preparation for this regulatory outburst, we have provided a brief guide explaining how proposed rules become regulations.

05/16/2016
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Blog

With Seven-Day Extension, Obama Midnight is Dark and Full of Regulatory Terrors

The "drop dead date" for federal regulations is fast approaching and we are expecting more overreaching proposals. This is the last date that proposed rules can be finalized by the Obama administration, without fear that the next President will overturn them under the Congressional Review Act. Regulatory agencies are expected to release a flood of regulations before this date. This regulatory outburst, first noted in the final days of the Carter Administration, is known as "midnight regulations."

05/16/2016
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Blog

London Whale-Sized Regulations on Wall Street Pay

Financial regulators released a 279-page proposal that would set parameters around how and when Wall Street Executives make their money. The proposal, mandated by the Dodd-Frank Act, is a five-year project spanning across six regulatory agencies.

05/11/2016
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Op-ed Placement

Regulations Are Stifling Economic Growth

As the size and scope of government have expanded, regulators have come to play a much larger role in our day-to-day lives. The advent of the administrative state has created a web of regulations covering everything from design standards for electric appliances to new rules that require hotels and restaurants to accommodate miniature horses as service animals. All too often, common sense is being replaced with exacting statutes and regulations that dictate very specific forms of compliance.

09/03/2014