This Week in Ridiculous Regulations

The CEI community mourned the loss of Steve Horwitz, a principled classical liberal, a fine economist, and an even finer person. We’ll miss you, Steve. Meanwhile, agencies issued new rules ranging from space launch spectrum to truck driver training.

On to the data:

  • Agencies issued 73 final regulations last week, after 82 the previous week.
  • That’s the equivalent of a new regulation every two hours and 18 minutes.
  • With 1,609 final regulations so far in 2021, agencies are on pace to issue 3,200 final regulations this year. 2020’s total was 3,218 final regulations.
  • Agencies issued 55 proposed regulations in the Federal Register last week, after 41 the previous week.
  • With 1,061 proposed regulations so far in 2021, agencies are on pace to issue 2,122 proposed regulations this year. 2020’s total was 2,021 proposed regulations.
  • Agencies published 482 notices last week, after 437 notices the previous week.
  • With 11,056 notices so far in 2021, agencies are on pace to issue 22,112 notices this year. 2020’s total was 22,480.
  • Last week, 1,527 new pages were added to the Federal Register, after 1,489 pages the previous week.
  • The average Federal Register issue this year contains 283 pages.
  • With 35,378 pages so far, the 2021 Federal Register is on pace for 70,762 pages in 2021. The 2020 total was 87,352 pages. The all-time record adjusted page count (subtracting 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. There are two such rules so far in 2021, none from the last week. Agencies published five economically significant rules in 2020 and four in 2019.
  • The running cost tally for 2021’s economically significant rules ranges from net savings of $100.7 million to net costs of $362.5 million. The 2020 figure ranges from net savings of between $2.04 billion and $5.69 billion, mostly from estimated savings on federal spending. The exact numbers depend on discount rates and other assumptions.
  • Agencies have published 21 final rules meeting the broader definition of “significant” in 2021, with two in the last week. This is on pace for 42 significant rules in 2021. 2020’s total was 79 significant final rules.
  • In 2021, 332 new rules affect small businesses. Seven are classified as significant. 2020’s totals were 668 rules affecting small businesses, 26 of them significant.

Highlights from last week’s new regulations:

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