This Week in Ridiculous Regulations   

Stacks of papers GettyImages-973870132

The UK parliament will soon be suspended for a five-week period, something the U.S. Congress should consider emulating as often as possible. Over in the U.S. executive branch, the 2019 Federal Register surpassed 45,000 pages last week, and the number of new regulations will likely hit 2,000 this week. Rulemaking agencies published new regulations ranging from ICE’s FALCON search program to low-powered radar.

On to the data:

  • Last week, 64 new final regulations were published in the Federal Register, after 68 the previous week.
  • That’s the equivalent of a new regulation every 2 hours and 38 minutes.
  • Federal agencies have issued 1,940 final regulations in 2019. At that pace, there will be 2,870 new final regulations. Last year’s total was 3,367 regulations.
  • Last week, agencies published 458 notices, for a total of 14,579 in 2019. At that pace, there will be 21,567 new notices this year. Last year’s total was 21,656.
  • Last week, 1,334 new pages were added to the Federal Register, after 1,734 pages the previous week.
  • The 2019 Federal Register totals 45,871 pages. It is on pace for 67,857 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. Three 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 $294.9 million to $439.2 million. The 2018 total ranges from $220.1 million to $2.54 billion, depending on discount rates and other assumptions.
  • Agencies have published 44 final rules meeting the broader definition of “significant” so far this year. 2018’s total was 108 significant final rules.
  • So far in 2019, 326 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:

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