OIRA recently celebrated its thirtieth anniversary with a conference at the George Washington University. The focus of the conference was to draw upon the experiences of former Administrators and Deputy Administrators of OIRA, as well as the current Administrator, to develop recommendations for the future of the Office.
There seemed to be a consensus that the substantive centralized review of regulations began under President Reagan This consensus mistakenly discounts the fifteen years preceding OIRA during which centralized review was developed and implemented by OMB and vetted in the agencies and by Congress and the judiciary. Although OIRA was created under President Carter and began operations under President Reagan, its beginnings should rightfully be traced back to President Johnson’s Administration.
Failure to recognize the crucial contribution of the four preceding Administrations to centralized regulatory review is to ignore the formative decisions made by the Executive, Legislative, and Judicial Branches during the 1965–1980 time period. In doing so, one is ignorant of OIRA’s forceful statutory and judicial foundations
The article attached below, published in the Administrative Law Review, describes the evolution of OIRA.