Archive for March, 2014

Public Citizen to Host Symposium With Howard Shelanski, Head White House Regulatory Official

From: Public Citizen

WHAT: A symposium with Howard Shelanski, administrator of the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA) since June 2013. A small but powerful division of the Office of Management and Budget, OIRA plays a crucial role in vetting draft regulations proposed by various federal agencies, including a wide array of key public health and safety standards.

WHEN: 12-1 p.m. EDT, Mon., March 31

WHERE: Public Citizen, 1600 20th St. N.W., Washington, D.C. (at 20th and Q Sts., N.W.)

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Reeder recognized for role in launching Fed 100

From: FCW

Posted by Troy K. Schneider

FCW’s 25th Federal 100 gala included one additional award that was long overdue. Frank Reeder, a 25-year Office of Management and Budget official who has also shaped federal IT from the legislative branch and various non-governmental organizations, was honored for his role in creating the Fed 100.

Reeder, who in the late 1980s was head of the information policy branch at OMB’s Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, approached FCW’s editors about finding a way to shine a light on the good things happening in government. The result — with its community-driven nomination process, blue-ribbon judging panel, and stand-up comic instead of drawn-out speeches — was the Federal 100 awards that continue to this day.

Garbage in, garbage out? Some micro sources of macro errors

Editor’s Note: The Journal of Institutional Economics article by Cass R. Sunstein and Reid Hastie found here provides a theoretical basis for understanding the importance of independent review of planned federal regulations.

OMB green lights FDA eye-tracking studies on labels

From: Politico


With Jason Huffman and Helena Bottemiller Evich

The White House Office of Management and Budget has cleared the way for FDA to conduct experimental studies to gain a better understanding of how consumers eyes’ read food packages, including the Nutrition Facts panel, according to a Monday Federal Register notice.

The approval comes eight months after the agency asked OMB for permission and three weeks after first lady Michelle Obama unveiled two proposed re-designs for the Nutrition Facts panel at the White House.

OIRA reducing number of extended reviews of rules, Shelanski says

From: FierceGovernment


The Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs is working toward faster review of regulations and improved technology to support the process, head rulemaker Howard Shelanski told a Senate panel Tuesday.

OIRA has already reduced the number of rules that have been under review for more than 200 days and the number of rules under review for more than 90 days is  considerably down, Shelanski said at a March 11 hearing of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee subcommittee on the efficiency and effectiveness of federal programs and the federal workforce.

Avoiding the cost of needless fear

From: The Boston Globe/Opinion

Obama’s former regulatory czar explains how to avoid bad rules

By Cass Sunstein

It isn’t easy to love cost-benefit analysis. When the Department of Transportation compares the monetary benefits of a new vehicle safety requirement with the monetary costs, or when the Environmental Protection Agency does the same for air pollution controls, we don’t hear sustained applause.

Reg Stats

From: George Washington University/The Regulatory Studies Center

The Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA) reviews draft proposed and final regulations to ensure they comply with the regulatory principles stated in Presidential Executive Orders and reflect the President’s policies and priorities. E.O. 12866 established a 90 day period for review, but authorized the rulemaking agency head to request, or the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) director to approve, extensions of review beyond 90 days (E.O. 12866 Section 6(b)(2)(c). Figure 1 below shows the average length of review for regulations concluded in each year.

Can Protected Data Be Shared to Improve Services?

From: Government Executive

By John Kamensky   IBM Center for the Business of Government

“Start with what you have,” is the advice consultants recommend to organizations that are just launching performance measurement initiatives. Now the Office of Management and Budget has issued guidance encouraging agencies to use existing program data in new ways.

The Obama administration has championed open data by encouraging agencies to make a wider range of statistical information available to the public. The philosophy is “information is a valuable national resource and strategic asset.” To that end, OMB has issued directives and created, a centralized website for public data.

OMB Regulatory Studies Fall Fellowship

From: OMB Regulatory Studies Fall Fellowship


The George Washington University Regulatory Studies Fellowship offers a unique, cross-cutting perspective on how federal regulations are developed. Experience in the Office of Management & Budget, Executive Office of the President is invaluable for anyone interested in working in or with the federal government, and the Office of Information & Regulatory Affairs (OIRA) within OMB is the key policy coordination office for federal regulatory, statistical, and information policy. The deadline to apply for the fall Fellowship is June 1.