This week in the world of regulation:
- Last week, 80 new final regulations were published in the Federal Register. There were 76 new final rules the previous week.
- That’s the equivalent of a new regulation every two hours and six minutes — 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
- All in all, 2,750 final rules have been published in the Federal Register this year.
- If this keeps up, the total tally for 2013 will be 3,718 new final rules.
- Last week, 1,622 new pages were added to the 2013 Federal Register, for a total of 59,578 pages.
- At its current pace, the 2013 Federal Register will run 79,227 pages, which would be good for fourth all time. The current record is 81,405 pages, set in 2010.
- Rules are called “economically significant” if they have costs of $100 million or more in a given year. Five such rules were published last week, for a total of 28 so far in 2013.
- The total estimated compliance costs of this year’s economically significant regulations ranges from $6.39 billion to $11.62 billion.
- So far, 243 final rules that meet the broader definition of “significant” have been published in 2013.
- So far this year, 520 final rules affect small business; 70 of them are significant rules.
Highlights from final rules published last week:
- The Fish and Wildlife Service issued two more sets of economically significant migratory bird hunting regulations, each carrying the standard “estimated consumer surplus across all flyways of $317.8-$416.8 million.” As usual, since this is not a compliance cost, I am scoring both rules as zero-cost in our running compliance cost tally.
- The FDA issued an economically significant rule requiring medical devices to have a unique identifier. The estimated cost is $84.1-85.7 million.
- The remaining two economically significant regulations come from the Federal Contract Compliance Programs Office. Both rules cover affirmative action hiring practices that government contractors must abide by. The first rule, concerning contractor hiring policies for employees with disabilities, has estimated first-year costs of $349,510,926 to $659,877,833. Recurring costs in future years will range from either $162,371,816 to $395,258,387 or $242,345,778 to $480,476,442.
- The second affirmative action rule covers contractors’ hiring policies for various categories of military veterans. Its estimated first year costs range from $177,296,772 to $483,560,138. Recurring costs in future years will be an estimated $120,386,058 to $347,617,359.
- The EPA issued air quality rules for Maryland, Utah, California, Texas, Pennsylvania, Ohio, California again, and the outer continental shelf off the California coast.
- The fluted kidneyshell and the slabside pearlymussel are both considered endangered species. Both species of mussel also received designated critical habitats.
- The grotto sculpin, a small fish, was also classified as endangered and given designated critical habitat.
For more data, go to TenThousandCommandments.com.