Legislation to Increase Congressional Oversight of Major Federal Regulations Passes House

Washington, Aug 2, 2013 -

Excessive regulations impose huge costs on our economy, hindering job creation and economic growth. According to the Small Business Administration, federal regulations cost our economy $1.75 trillion per year. Currently, Congress may only check regulatory overreach by the executive branch by passing a joint resolution disapproving a federal regulation, which must then be signed into law by the President.

To reduce the burden of costly government mandates while ensuring that sensible and needed regulations may take effect, the House of Representatives this week passed H.R. 367, the REINS Act. The measure would require congressional approval for all federal regulations that have an estimated economic impact of $100 million or more. The REINS Act would restore accountability to the rule-making process by preventing regulations that will have a major impact on our economy from being implemented without congressional approval.

In addition to the REINS Act, the House passed a measure to specifically address regulations that would have an impact on energy prices. H.R. 1582, the Energy Consumers Relief Act, would require the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to submit a report to Congress prior to finalizing any energy-related regulation that would cost more than $1 billion. The report must contain a cost-benefit analysis and estimate whether the regulation would raise energy prices and state how it would impact American jobs. Furthermore, H.R. 1582 would prevent the EPA from finalizing such a rule if the Secretary of Energy determines that the rule would have an adverse impact on our economy. I supported these common-sense measures to reduce the influence of unelected bureaucrats, restore congressional oversight to the regulatory process, and hold federal agencies accountable for the economic impacts of their regulations.

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