Regulatory lookback gaining traction, says new OIRA head

From: Fierce Government

By Zach Rausnitz

The new head of the White House Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs offered tentative praise for agencies’ efforts to review existing regulations during a House hearing July 24.

“I am satisfied that they are taking it seriously, but I want to be careful with the word ‘satisfied.’ I’m very  encouraged by the signs that I have seen,” Howard Shelanski told  the House Small Business Committee. Shelanski was confirmed as the new OIRA administrator on June 27, replacing Cass Sunstein.

Under an executive  order (.pdf) that President Obama issued in January 2011, agencies must  review regulations to find those that are duplicative, outdated or too costly.

“What I have seen is an increasing engagement by the agencies in  this process. So I am satisfied that it is getting traction, but I want to see more,” Shelanski said.

In response to a question from Rep. Nydia  Velázquez (D-N.Y.), the committee’s ranking member, about whether the executive order would actually have a lasting impact, Shelanski said that “a culture of  retrospective review and of lookback” has begun to take hold.

Earlier  this month, agencies submitted updates of their retrospective review plans to  OIRA. Shelanski said each of those reports has a significant number of initiatives and that they will be publicly available on agency websites “very shortly.”

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