From: American Action Forum

Douglas Holtz-Eakin

Eakinomics: Checking in on Regulatory Budgets

People have different capacities for suspense. I, for example, have been breathless about whether the Trump Administration could hit its regulatory burden targets this year. After all, fiscal 2017 and 2018 were simply remarkable. After 8 years of the Obama Administration increasing the private sector regulatory burden by over $100 billion annually, the current administration held the increase to $5 billion in fiscal 2017 and reduced the burden by $6 billion in 2018. Stunning. The mechanism for achieving control of regulatory burdens was using the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs to assign each agency a regulatory budget — an amount by which its rulemaking efforts could increase the cost of compliance for the private sector — and those budget targets were either zero or a negative number. The budgets worked better than I ever believed they could.

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