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®: CRE Regulatory Action of the Week

GAO Reports on Agencies' Retrospective Rule Reviews
The US Government Accounting Office issued a July 2007 report entitled Reexamining Regulations: Opportunities Exist to Improve Effectiveness and Transparency of Retrospective Reviews. The report found that between 2001 through 2006 nine selected federal agencies conducted over 1300 reviews of existing regulations. The report finds that the processes and standards governing reviews, and the extent of public involvement, varies widely depending on the agency and the subject matter.

The lack of transparency and public involvement is a concern raised by the report, which states:

"Nonfederal parties said that the lack of transparency was a barrier; they were rarely aware of the agencies' reviews. Both agencies and nonfederal parties identified limited public participation as a barrier."

The report recommends several initiatives to improve public participation in reviews, and to improve the review process in general. These initiatives include congressional revision and consolidation of existing review requirements.

This report is particularly useful because it contains a detailed analysis of nine federal agencies' existing regulation review processes and practices. The nine agencies covered by the report are

  • Department of Agriculture
  • Department of Justice
  • Department of Labor
  • Department of Transportation
  • Consumer Product Safety Commission
  • Environmental Protection Agency
  • Federal Communications Commission
  • Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation
  • Small Business Administration

  • Click here to read GAO report