Regulatory Transparency Is Decidedly Lacking

Regular readers know that the federal government issues about 3,700 new regulations in an average year. But how many of those rules actually receive proper review, with cost and benefit estimates? Wayne Crews and I did some digging on that front, and the answer is not pretty: the Office of Management and Budget reviewed a grand total of 47 regulations last year, or a little more than 1 percent of the total. In today’s Washington Times, we lay out the problem and propose some solutions:

The OMB should ensure any new proposal creates more value than it destroys. One reason agencies regulate so recklessly is that they know few people are paying attention. Expanding Executive Order 12866 to include independent agencies would allow the agency to review more rules, though it would still fall well short of transparency. The Code of Federal Regulations contains more than 1 million regulations, with thousands more being added every year, according to George Mason University’s RegData project.

If only Washington paid as much attention to regulations as we’re learning it pays to our private phone calls and emails.

Read the whole thing here.