This week in ridiculous regulations: lowfat yogurt and halibut sharing
Debt ceiling negotiations remain stalled, and will likely remain that way until the deadline draws nearer. The Supreme Court left Section 230 intact. A new credit card late fee rule would penalize people who pay their bills on time. Meanwhile, agencies issued new regulations ranging from tracing food to portable air conditioners.
On to the data:
- Agencies issued 60 final regulations last week, after 47 the previous week.
- That’s the equivalent of a new regulation every two hours and 48 minutes.
- With 1,145 final regulations so far in 2023, agencies are on pace to issue 2,951 final regulations this year. For comparison, there were 3,168 new final regulations in 2022, and 3,257 new final regulations in 2021.
- Agencies issued 27 proposed regulations in the Federal Register last week, after 46 the previous week.
- With 839 proposed regulations so far in 2023, agencies are on pace to issue 2,162 proposed regulations this year.
- For comparison, there were 2,044 new proposed regulations in 2022, and 2,094 in 2021.
- Agencies published 437 notices last week, after 454 notices the previous week.
- With 8,648 notices so far in 2023, agencies are on pace to issue 22,289 notices this year.
- For comparison, there were 22,505 notices in 2022, and 20,018 in 2021.
- Last week, 1,728 new pages were added to the Federal Register, after 1,352 pages the previous week.
- The average Federal Register issue in 2023 contains 336 pages.
- With 32,619 pages so far, the 2023 Federal Register is on pace for 84,070 pages.
- For comparison, the 2022 Federal Register totals 80,756 pages, and 2021’s is 74,352 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. This will soon change to $200 million. There are eight such rules so far in 2023, none in the last week.
- This is on pace for 21 economically significant regulations in 2023.
- For comparison, there were 43 economically significant rules in 2022, and 26 in 2021. These comparisons will not be strictly apple-to-apple after the threshold change takes effect. This will likely lower this year’s number.
- The total estimated cost of 2023’s economically significant regulations so far ranges from $55.92 billion to $78.74 billion, according to numbers self-reported by agencies.
- For comparison, the running cost tally for 2022’s economically significant rules ranges from net costs of $45.28 billion to $78.05 billion. In 2021, net costs ranged from $13.54 billion to $1992 billion. The exact numbers depend on discount rates and other assumptions.
- There were four regulations meeting the broader definition of “significant” last week, after three the previous week.
- So far this year, there are 93 new regulations meeting the broader definition of “significant.” This is on pace for 240 significant regulations in 2023.
- For comparison, there were 255 such new regulations in 2022, and 387 in 2021.
- So far in 2023, 292 new regulations affect small businesses, on pace for 753. Twenty-seven of them are significant, on pace for 70.
- For comparison, in 2022 there were 912 rules affecting small businesses, 70 of them significant. 2021’s totals were 912 rules affecting small businesses, 101 of them significant.
Highlights from last week’s new regulations:
- Food traceability.
- Iranian sanctions.
- South Sudan sanctions.
- Global Magnitsky sanctions.
- Commercial Mail Receiving Agencies.
- Garnishing federal workers’ wages for child support.
- Federal Maritime Commission user fees. While these user fees are small, consumers and shippers pay billions in extra costs each year thanks to the 1920 Jones Act, which the Federal Maritime Commission helps to enforce.
- Detroit ozone standards.
- Audit policies for Rural Utilities Service grant winners.
- The FDA responds to comments on recent changes to lowfat yogurt standards.
- AmeriCorps is updating some of its regulations.
- New immigration rules from the Homeland Security Department and the Executive Office for Immigration Review.
- Corrected halibut sharing rules.
- Energy conservation tests for portable air conditioners.
For more data, see Ten Thousand Commandments and follow @10KC and @RegoftheDay on Twitter.