New rules last week covered everything from relaxed grape handling to unclaimed funerary objects.
On to the data:
- Last week, 77 new final regulations were published in the Federal Register, after 83 the previous week.
- That’s the equivalent of a new regulation every two hours and 11 minutes.
- So far in 2015, 2,914 final regulations have been published in the Federal Register. At that pace, there will be a total of 3,388 new regulations this year, far fewer than the usual total of 3,500-plus.
- Last week, 1,850 new pages were added to the Federal Register, after 2,137 pages the previous week.
- Currently at 69,377 pages, the 2015 Federal Register is on pace for 80,671 pages.
- Rules are called “economically significant” if they have costs of $100 million or more in a given year. 30 such rules have been published so far this year, two in the past week.
- The total estimated compliance cost of 2015’s economically significant regulations ranges from $3.63 billion to $4.88 billion for the current year.
- 253 final rules meeting the broader definition of “significant” have been published so far this year.
- So far in 2015, 469 new rules affect small businesses; 67 of them are classified as significant.
Highlights from selected final rules published last week:
- $479.5 million of new steam-generated electricity rules from the EPA.
- A new Medicare rule aims to save $260 million in government spending in FY 2016. Since this is government spending and not compliance costs, I am scoring this rule as zero-cost in the running compliance cost tally.
- Federal regulations for unclaimed funerary objects.
- Energy efficiency rules for high-rise apartments and condos.
- The federal government has a Watch, Watch Instruments, and Jewelry Program.
- Relaxed handling requirements for grapes from southeastern California.
- New labeling requirements for room air conditioners’ water and energy usage.
- Slowly but surely, the FCC moves into the 20th century with regulations partially inspired by Nobel economist Ronald Coase’s 1959 article on spectrum auctions. See here and here. It’s good to see the FCC catching up with best practices from two generations ago, though one fears what will happen when its attention turns to the current century. Hopefully that won’t happen until the next century.