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First Gov  

July 21, 1999
(House Rules)

H.R. 1074 - Regulatory Right-to-Know Act of 1999
(Bliley (R) VA and 49 co-sponsors)

The Administration stongly opposes House passage of H.R. 1074, which would require that the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) annually prepare an extensive report on the costs and benefits of Federal regulations. H.R. 1074 would significantly expand the requirements of reports that OMB has prepared under recent appropriations riders. While the Administration agrees that regulations should be well-analyzed and justified, it has serious concerns with H.R. 1074.

  • By requiring extensive procedures and detailed cost-benefit analyses of each government program and program component, H.R. 1074 would divert attention and resources from the Administration's most important focus: making certain that agency regulatory decisions make sense.

  • Some of the requirements in this bill are beyond the abilities and resources of OMB and the agencies who perform these analyses. Given the methodological and data collection difficulties involved, some of the analytic requirements are even beyond the current capabilities in academia.

  • The imposition of unnecessary and burdensome new procedures would divert resources within OMB, making it difficult for OMB to develop the annual cost-benefit report.

The Administration agrees that cost-benefit analysis on significant regulations is important and has included such a requirement for major rules in its executive order on regulatory reform. However, this legislation would require a cost-benefit analysis by agency, agency program, and program component. The increased burden that this would place on the agencies would crowd out other priorities and would add little value in many cases.