OMB Revives Use of Regulatory Return Letters Under Bush Administration
Inadequate quality of agency analyses related to
Regulatory standard(s) adopted under the rule are
not justified by the agency's analyses;
Agency rule is not consistent with the principles
of Executive Order 12866 or with the President's other policies and priorities;
Agency rule is not compatible with other statutes
or Executive Orders.
One useful tool available to OMB to ensure sound regulation is the Regulatory Return Letter, through which
rules may be returned to an agency for further consideration. Issuance of a Return Letter does not
necessarily indicate OMB opposition to the draft rule, but reflects a belief and explains why a given
rulemaking may benefit from additional agency review. An OMB Return Letter may be warranted for a variety
of reasons, inculding:
Despite their potential to positively impact
agency rulemaking activities, under the Clinton Administration, Return Letters fell out of use, with none
being issued from 1996 to 2000. In contrast, the Bush Administration has revived use of this important
regulatory mechanism, having issued 14 Return Letters since July 2001. CRE strongly supports use of
Return Letters to ensure that federal agencies promulgate rules which are well-reasoned and in compliance
with all relevant requirements.
Click to review the OMB Return Letters Issued in 2001.
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