Editor’s Note: Conducting Benefit-Cost Analyses of federal programs traces its vintage to the passage of the Flood Control Act of 1936. It is possible that the current debate might be one of the few times that a prolonged attention is being given to addressing income distribution in the exercise of benefit-cost analyses by either the President or the Congress since such actions were championed by leading members of Congress during the Johnson Administration. The Administration has indicated that it is going to address income distribution in the rulemaking process. Stakeholders can either wait and comment on the Administration’s position or in the alternative take a proactive position by making a recommendation; the purpose of this note is to lay the foundation for the latter option by soliciting the views of experts on the alternatives presented herein.
Two days after the election CRE published a paper titled: “Questions to Nominees for the Administrator of OIRA” which was distributed widely to affected parties.
Option #2 received considerable attention in that it deals with OIRA assuming a proactive role in addressing existential threats.
Option #3 at least until now, received considerably less attention. The thrust of this option is the need for OIRA to develop a multi-year, multi-agency regulatory program which is reviewed by the public, the Congress and stakeholders.
The presentation set forth below was made to a panel at the 2021 Annual Conference of the Society for Benefit-Cost Analysis on March 24 by the Center for Regulatory Effectiveness and duly forwarded to members of the Biden Administration.
Here are CRE’s takeaways from the aforementioned presentation which is posted below this summary statement:
A number of Trump judicially determined abuses of Executive Branch rulemaking authorities have been struck down without reliance on Chevron. What remains is being addressed by the Biden Administration either through the exercise of its rulemaking authorities or in response to petitions filed pursuant to the Information Quality Act. What’s there not to like about representatives of an elected official acting as the tie breaker in lieu of an unelected individual(s)? Furthermore, with the ever increasing use of holistic decision-making processes and the attendant improvement in the analytical tools used in the Executive Branch it is clear that neither of these are in the long suit of the judiciary.