This Week in Ridiculous Regulations   


Pundits spent the week engaging in mortal combat over the Mueller Report, which none of them have read, and spring officially sprung with baseball’s opening day on Thursday. Meanwhile, rulemaking agencies issued new regulations ranging from goat scrapie to pulse crop enforcement.

On to the data:

  • Last week, 48 new final regulations were published in the Federal Register, after 59 the previous week.
  • That’s the equivalent of a new regulation every three hours and 30 minutes.
  • Federal agencies have issued 554 final regulations in 2019. At that pace, there will be 2,271 new final regulations. Last year’s total was 3,367 regulations.
  • Last week, agencies published 474 notices, for a total of 4,870 in 2019. At that pace, there will be 19,960 new notices this year. Last year’s total was 22,205.
  • Last week, 1,074 new pages were added to the Federal Register, after 1,277 pages the previous week.
  • The 2019 Federal Register totals 12,046 pages. It is on pace for 49,369 pages. The 2018 total was 68,082 pages. The all-time record adjusted page count (which subtracts skips, jumps, and blank pages) is 96,994, set in 2016.
  • Rules are called “economically significant” if they have costs of $100 million or more in a given year. One such rule has been published this year. Six such rules were published in 2018.
  • The running compliance cost tally for 2019’s economically significant regulations currently ranges from $139.1 million to $175.8 million. The 2018 total ranges from $220.1 million to $2.54 billion, depending on discount rates and other assumptions.
  • Agencies have published 20 final rules meeting the broader definition of “significant” so far this year. 2018’s total was 108 significant final rules.
  • So far in 2019, 108 new rules affect small businesses; 7 of them are classified as significant. 2018’s totals were 660 rules affecting small businesses, with 29 of them significant.

Highlights from last week’s new final regulations:

For more data, see Ten Thousand Commandments and follow @10KC and @RegoftheDay on Twitter.