One Instance of an Illusive OMB Review of a Regulation (Revised)

OMB, through its Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs,  is vested with the responsibility to review regulations before they are disseminated as a final rule. During its more than forty years of existence it has done an excellent job and is the pinnacle of “neutral competence”.

However, OMB is located within the Executive Office of the President and often its review is “assisted” by personnel less visible than the career officials of OMB(OIRA). A possible case in point is the recent handling of proposed rule dealing with Over- the- Counter Hearing Aids authored by the FDA.

The Origins of Centralized Regulatory Review


OIRA’s Formative Years:  The Historical Record of Centralized Regulatory Review Preceding OIRA’s Founding

Jim Tozzi


This publication traces the development of one of the most controversial mechanisms for managing the administrative state in the United States, the White House Office of Management and Budget review of regulations. The article begins with the design of the program during the Johnson Administration, its partial implementation during the Nixon and Ford Administrations, its integration with related government programs during the Carter Administration and its government-wide implementation in the Reagan Administration. The author was the ranking career civil servant in charge of the implementation of the program during these five Presidential Administrations.