From: The Hill/RegWatch
By Tim Devaney
The Obama administration is poised to issue regulations that target truck drivers who have failed drug or alcohol tests.
The new rule from the Department of Transportation would establish a federal database of commercial truck and bus drivers who have failed or refused to take the tests. The database would be available to trucking companies so that they can perform background checks before hiring prospective employees.
The White House’s Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA) this week completed a review of the rule, which was originally submitted for approval in March 2013. All economically significant regulations must go through OIRA before they are published in the Federal Register.
From: Farm and Dairy
The Food and Drug Administration is considering updating those nutrition labels on food packaging. The last time nutrition labels were updated was the 1990s. Since then we’ve learned a lot about nutrition.
According to an online summary on the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs website, the FDA is looking at: serving sizes of foods that can reasonably be consumed at one-eating occasions, dual-column labeling, updating, modifying and establishing certain RACCs. RACC stands for “reference amounts customarily consumed.
Why the change?
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From:Visualize Regulations: Regulation Data Like You’ve Never Seen It Before
by Steven Posnack
From reporters to academics, crunching numbers on regulations is sexy (especially during election time). So before I dive in to the details behind this post’s title, here’s a tip: you can’t count regulations that don’t get published. I take this concept and many others on in my post on the positives and pitfalls of available regulation datasets.
Riddle me this one my regulation counting colleagues: what if I told you your stats were wrong if you were using Reginfo.gov data?
Editor’s Note: CRE’s white paper “Carbon Capture and Sequestration: EPA’S Technology Availability Determinations Need to be Reproducible” is available here.
From: Inside EPA
An EPA data notice now under White House review could help EPA rebut critics’ claims that requiring new coal plants to use carbon capture and sequestration (CCS) is illegal.
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Editor’s Note: The text of the PRBA letter to OIRA is available here.
From: PRBA–The Rechargeable Battery Association
PHMSA Rule Would Align U.S. Rules with Stricter International Safety Regulations
WASHINGTON, Jan. 13, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ – PRBA–The Rechargeable Battery Association, with other trade groups, manufacturers and transportation companies, has urged the Office of Management and Budget to “act promptly” and finish its review of U.S. Department of Transportation regulations that would advance safety goals by harmonizing U.S. requirements for the air transport of lithium batteries with tougher international rules.
Editor’s Note: As Professor Sunstein explains, “Endorsed for more than three decades and by five presidents, cost-benefit analysis is here to stay.”
From: RegBlog/The Penn Program on Regulation
Is the enjoyment of an after-dinner coffee worth being kept awake at night and being tired the next day? When we answer that kind of question and many others like it, we evaluate the pros and cons of our choices. In effect, we do a cost-benefit analysis. Although “cost-benefit analysis” may sound like a complex concept, it is actually a practice we engage in daily.
Safety fitness rule scheduled for January, as e-log, driver database rule still expected
In its Semiannual Regulatory Agenda report published Jan. 7, the Department of Transportation included an entry on the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s Safety Fitness Determination rule, which hints that a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking will be published in January.
The rule would alter the agency’s Compliance, Safety, Accountability program and the data it uses to produce a carrier’s Safety Fitness Determination. Now, the agency only uses on-site compliance reviews to produce an overall safety rating for carriers.
From: Commerical Carrier Journal
Rulemaking 101: The process behind FMCSA’s regulatory agenda
By Jill Dunn
Ever wondered what exactly the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s rulemaking process actually is? And how it gets off course or delayed in pushing out a rule, like the current situation with the electronic logging device mandate?
Federal law dictates how agencies make regulations, but numerous factors affect that process.
For example, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s current regulatory roster includes rulemaking ordered by the 2005 transportation omnibus act. Last year’s transportation reauthorization added to that, directing agency officials to complete 29 rulemakings to over 27 months.
By Bruce Rolfsen
Dec. 23 –A review of the draft final rule for protecting workers constructing and repairing high-voltage power lines was completed Dec. 20 by the White House’s Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, ending an examination that lasted 18 months, according to an OIRA statement.
The final rule, Electrical Power Transmission and Distribution; Electrical Protective Equipment standard (RIN 1218-AB67), is now back with the Occupational Safety and Health Administration.
The next step is expected to be the publishing of the final rule in the Federal Register. An OSHA spokesman told Bloomberg BNA Dec. 23 that a publication date hadn’t been set.