Responses to Questions for the Record of Jerry Ellig on Moving to a Stronger Economy Through Regulatory Budgeting

From: Western Free Press

February 3, 2016

Senator Michael B. Enzi
Committee on the Budget
United States Senate
Washington, DC 20510

Dear Chairman Enzi:

Thank you for the opportunity to testify at the Senate Budget Committee’s December 9, 2015, hearing on the regulatory budget. Below are my responses to the four questions for the record:


Answer: Like a family budget or the federal budget, a regulatory budget is a plan for the allocation of resources. The purpose of a budget is to place an overall limit on spending, based on the family’s or the government’s projected income, then divide that spending among competing priorities based on the expected benefits. No one would seriously suggest that the federal government operate without a budget; that would mean individual agencies could spend federal money as they parochially see fit, with no consideration of the government’s ability to pay or the implications such spending could have on other programs.

Unfortunately, the current regulatory system creates an analogous dysfunctional situation. Regulatory agencies can direct individuals, businesses, and state, local, and tribal governments to sacrifice money, time, privacy, and other values with no consideration of the total cost to society of all regulations, as long as the regulation is intended to accomplish the agency’s goals.

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