The Country of Law. And the Possible Revolution

Editor’s Note: The following has been translated from the original Italian. For the pre-history of OIRA and cost-benefit analysis, see here.


Francesco Delzio


Yet, in the era of complex societies one of the main objectives of the Government should be to simplify the lives of citizens. With laws written in simple language, understandable to the average citizen, based on the principle of “minimum essential” red tape. But none of these virtues belong to the Italian legislature, which is Byzantine for setting and cryptic by vocation.

The CBO-CBA Analogy, or What Wonks Could Learn from Each Other

From: Notice & Comment | A Blog from the Yale Journal on Regulation and the ABA Section of Administrative Law & Regulatory Practice

by Jennifer Nou


Like the CBO Director, the OIRA Administrator is often a punching bag for both the Left and the Right. When you’re trying to maintain a reputation for nonpartisan number-crunching, you can’t please everyone. And like CBO, OIRA must also make predictions about the future amidst uncertainty: How many companies will go out of business as a result of technology-forcing requirements? How many people will no longer get lung cancer as a result of tobacco warning labels? These judgments require answers to hard questions about the right modeling assumptions, discount rates, and time horizons.

The Structure of Regulatory Revolutions

Editor’s Note: Reforming the administrative state requires reforming, i.e., broadening, the education of future administrators. See, Discussion Group: Educating Citizens on Rulemaking, Administrative Hearings and Other Administrative Procedures on the Southeastern Association of Law Schools (SEALS) draft Agenda for its annual meeting.

From: Yale Notice & Comment | A Blog from the Yale Journal on Regulation and the ABA Section of Administrative Law & Regulatory Practice

by Adam White


A Macroeconomic Study of Federal and State Automotive Regulations with Recommendations for Analysts, Regulators, and Legislators

From: Indiana University/School of Public and Environmental Affairs

Sanya Carley, Denvil Duncan, John D. Graham, Saba Siddiki, and Nikolaos Zirogiannis


This study examines how the U.S. economy is likely to be impacted by the combined effects of three automotive regulatory programs that were adopted in 2012: the U.S. Department of Transportation’s corporate average fuel economy (CAFE) standards for model years 2017-2025; the Environmental Protection Agency’s greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions standards for model years 2017-2025; and the California Air Resources Board’s Zero-Emission Vehicle (ZEV) requirements for 2018-2025.

Cost-Benefit Analysis and the Judicial Role

From: SSRN

The Economist: “beef up . . . OIRA”

From: The Economist | Grudges and kludges

Too much federal regulation has piled up in America

Republicans and Democrats have been equally culpable in adding to the rulebook


When a government agency writes a significant regulation—mostly defined as one costing more than $100m—it must usually prove that the rule’s benefits justify its costs. Its analysis goes through the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA), a nerdy outpost of the White House. The process is meticulous. The OECD, a club of mostly rich countries, finds that America’s analysis of regulations is among the most rigorous anywhere.


Symposium Issue: A Future Without the Administrative State? (AdLaw Bridge Series)

From: Notice & Comment, A Blog from the Yale Journal on Regulation and the ABA Section of Administrative Law & Regulatory Practice

by Chris Walker

Last March the Missouri Law Review hosted a terrific symposium, organized by Professor Erin Morrow Hawley, entitled A Future Without the Administrative State? (video here). The published issue from the symposium was just posted to the Law Review‘s website. I tweeted out thread of summaries/links to each piece here. Professor Hawley’s introduction is definitely a great place to start.

Here is the table of contents, with links to each article:

Read Complete Article

President Trump Signs Executive Order Introducing Significant Changes into the Federal Regulatory Process

Editor’s Note: To learn more about regulatory budgets, read Towards a Regulatory Budget: A Working Paper on the Cost of Federal Regulation (1979).

From: Notice & Comment | A Blog from the Yale Journal on Regulation and the ABA Section of Administrative Law & Regulatory Practice

by John Cooney


Improving Regulatory Analysis at Independent Agencies

From: RegBlog | Penn Program on Regulation

When conducting the analysis needed to inform sound regulatory decision-making, independent agencies could benefit from following key analytical standards that over the years have been imposed on executive branch agencies by executive orders. As a Commissioner of the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), too often I have seen my Agency depart from these analytical best practices, which then can lead to misinformed and even unnecessary regulations. Regulatory decision-making at independent agencies like CPSC would benefit from adherence to four main analytic requirements contained in executive orders.


Improving the Process of Making Rules at Independent Agencies

From: RegBlog | Penn Program on Regulation


First, independent agencies like CPSC should be expected to improve the accuracy and timeliness of their regulatory agendas. The regulatory agenda concept began with Executive Order 12,044, issued by President Jimmy Carter in 1978. Its plainly stated purpose was “to give the public adequate notice” of how agencies would be spending their time in the near term, which would allow for and encourage meaningful public participation in the regulatory process. The Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA) extended the regulatory agenda requirement to all agencies, including independent agencies.