A Lamentation on the Status of Guidance Documents

Statement of the Issue

Bottom Line: The USG states that guidance documents are binding on federal agencies, unless an aggrieved party convinces their superiors to the contrary, but not on the regulated community. 

Recently there has been a flurry of concern regarding regulatory guidance documents notwithstanding their multi-decade review by experts in the field. In response to the release and resultant public discussion of the aforementioned documents, both inside and outside of government, CRE has received and has responded to a number of comments from its readers, most of which are captured in the statements which follow.