May 4, 2015

Learning More from the Data the Federal Government Already Collects

From: OMBlog

Posted by Aviva Aron-Dine

Last week the Departments of Labor and Education published the draft regulations implementing the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA).  These proposed regulations, and the underlying WIOA legislation, will improve our Nation’s public workforce system by strengthening coordination and accountability. One of their most exciting features is that they would require States to produce standardized, easily-understandable “scorecards.” What that means is that – for the first time – workers choosing among different training programs that receive WIOA funding will be able to easily compare them on criteria that matter, like how much the program costs, the percent of participants who actually complete the program, and the average earnings of participants. Right now, workers seeking training may not even be able to find apples-to-apples data on how much different programs would cost, much less how their students fare in the job market. WIOA and the proposed regulations published last week seek to change that. In addition, the draft regulations put in place the WIOA requirement that States implement high-quality evaluations of the core WIOA employment, education, and training programs. That will let them improve workforce outcomes over time by learning which approaches work best and then scaling-up those approaches.

April 27, 2015

Undoing the suppression of substance use data

Editor’s Note: All privacy-related regulatory proceedings from Executive Branch agencies are subject to OIRA review. 

From: The Incidental Economist | Contemplating health care with a focus on research, an eye on reform.

Nicholas Bagley

In welcome news for the research community, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) is planning on proposing a rule to restore research access to substance use data in Medicare and Medicaid files.

***

April 23, 2015

BIA Takes Heat From Connecticut Lawmakers, Others On Indian Recognition

From: Connecticut Mirror

By ANA RADELAT

WASHINGTON — Kevin Washburn, the head of the U.S. Bureau of Indian Affairs, hinted Wednesday that he may have eliminated a provision in new tribal recognition rules that would stymie efforts by several Connecticut tribes to seek federal status.

***

But no one has seen the final regulations Washburn sent this week to the Office of Management and Budget. The OMB’s Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs has by law 90 days to finish its review of the regulations before they are implemented, but it usually takes less time.

April 22, 2015

Advisory Committee Urges Americans to Adopt a Sustainable Diet

Editor’s Note: All federal dietary guidance must comply with the requirements of the Data Quality Act. HHS has already demonstrated that they will reject internationally-developed dietary guidelines that fail to comply with the DQA. For more information, please see CRE’s letter to HHS and USDA, CRE’s letter to WHO and FAO and HHS’s letter to WHO.

From: RegBlog | Penn Program on Regulation

A federal advisory panel tasked with recommending dietary guidelines believes that Americans should consume less meat to promote healthy and environmentally responsible eating.

April 17, 2015

E-log mandate rule still slated for Sept. publication, speed limiter mandate delayed

From: Overdrive

***

Speed limiter mandate: The DOT’s April report now projects a proposed speed limiter mandate rule to be published July 27, instead of the June 22 projection in its March report. The rule was sent to the Office of the Secretary of Transportation in August and has been awaiting approval there before sending to the White House’s Office of Management and Budget for its approval. The DOT does project it will send the rule to the OMB within the next week, however.

April 10, 2015

DOJ eyes music regulation update

From: Politico

By

The Justice Department is poised to make changes to decades-old music industry regulations that could impose significant new costs on Pandora and other digital streaming services, according to five sources briefed by agency officials.

***
The Justice Department, which has been reviewing the consent decrees since last June, is considering several other changes, including an update to the rate-court system to allow for alternative dispute resolution; new rules that would make it clearer who owns the rights to what songs, a major Pandora ask; and a shift that would allow songwriters to collect royalties through ASCAP and BMI when songs are downloaded or bought on CDs.

Read Complete Article

April 8, 2015

Clean Water rule advances to OMB for review

From: Agri-Pulse

By Philip Brasher

WASHINGTON, April 6, 2015 – The Obama administration has advanced a final Clean Water Act rule with revisions that the EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy promises will address a range of objections raised since it was first proposed a year ago.

A final version of the rule was sent to the Office of Management and Budget for review on Friday. Administration officials have said they intend to release the final rule this spring.

Read Complete Article

April 6, 2015

Battling nightmare infections: CDC’s plan to beat superbugs

Editor’s Note: Antibiotic-resistant bacteria are a public health threat which has previously received insufficient federal attention. See here.

From:  Bangor Daily News

By Julie Steenhuysen and Sharon Begley, Reuters

***

The White House on Friday told the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to slash rates of infections from antibiotic-resistant bacteria by 2020 as part of a plan to prevent patient deaths and curb overuse of antibiotics administered to humans and animals.

***

While the CDC has no regulatory authority, the government’s Medicare and Medicaid health insurance programs require all participating hospitals to develop a stewardship strategy within three years. Failure to do so would disqualify them from the health plans.

April 3, 2015

Truck Makers Seek Complete-Vehicle GHG Rule

From: Truckinginfo

By David Cullen

A Notice of Proposed Rulemaking for Phase 2 of the federal GHG/MPG rules has been forwarded to the Office of Management and Budget for formal review. At the moment, the NPRM is slated to be published in the Federal Register sometime in June. With that notice, a period for public comment on the rule will be announced.

Formally entitled “Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Fuel Efficiency Standards for Medium- and Heavy-Duty Engines and Vehicles — Phase 2,” the new rule is being promulgated by the Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of Transportation’s National Highway Transportation Safety Administration and will impact new medium- and heavy-duty vehicles of “model years beyond 2018.”

April 1, 2015

US EPA looking at bans/restrictions on three chemicals

From: Chemical Watch

Risk assessments found substances pose health risks

The US EPA plans to develop proposed rules to ban or restrict the use of trichloroethylene (TCE), n-methylpyrrolidone (NMP) and methylene chloride in certain applications. It is seeking input on the possible impact of the proposed rules on small businesses.

***

The Regulatory Flexibility Act requires agencies to establish a small business advocacy review panel (SBAR) for rules that may have a “significant economic impact on a substantial number of small businesses,” the agency said. This panel will include federal representatives from the Small Business Administration (SBA), the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) and the EPA.