This Week in Ridiculous Regulations
Washington, D.C. was hit by a flash flood, but agencies were still able to publish new regulations ranging from electric program procedures to Fort Ord dog management.
On to the data:
- Last week, 49 new final regulations were published in the Federal Register, after 73 the previous week.
- That’s the equivalent of a new regulation every 3 hours and 26 minutes.
- Federal agencies have issued 1,482 final regulations in 2019. At that pace, there will be 2,765 new final regulations. Last year’s total was 3,367 regulations.
- Last week, agencies published 405 notices, for a total of 11,579 in 2019. At that pace, there will be 21,668 new notices this year. Last year’s total was 21,656.
- Last week, 1,432 new pages were added to the Federal Register, after 1,084 pages the previous week.
- The 2019 Federal Register totals 33,492 pages. It is on pace for 62,486 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. Two such rules have 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 $205.1 million to $294.8 million. The 2018 total ranges from $220.1 million to $2.54 billion, depending on discount rates and other assumptions.
- Agencies have published 37 final rules meeting the broader definition of “significant” so far this year. 2018’s total was 108 significant final rules.
- So far in 2019, 256 new rules affect small businesses; 14 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:
- The Environmental Protection Agency is enacting stricter standards for lead dust and leaving unchanged its definition of “lead-based paint.” This marks the second economically significant regulation of 2019. Recent years have typically seen 40-50 new such regulations. As usual, the EPA makes its cost estimate difficult to find. An earlier proposed rule estimates annual costs of $66 million to $119 million.
- Technical amendments to North Korea sanctions.
- Dog management at Fort Ord Federal Monument in California.
- The Rural Utilities Service is streamlining some of its Electric Program procedures.
- The Library of Congress’ Copyright Office now has a digital licensee coordinator.
- The Environmental Protection Agency is repealing its clean power plan.
- Standards of conduct for investment advisors, broker-dealers, and the Securities and Exchange Commission’s interpretations of them.
For more data, see “Ten Thousand Commandments” and follow @10KC and @RegoftheDay on Twitter.