Brexit happened, President Trump signed the USMCA trade agreement, and the 2020 Federal Register topped 5,000 pages. Agencies issued new final regulations ranging from rice inspection fees to a Hurricane in Alabama.
On to the data:
- Last week, 52 new final regulations were published in the Federal Register, after 44 the previous week.
- That’s the equivalent of a new regulation every three hours and 14 minutes.
- Federal agencies have issued 235 final regulations in 2020. At that pace, there will be 2,798 new final regulations. Last year’s total was 2,964 regulations.
- There were also 38 proposed regulations in the Federal Register last week, for a total of 164 on the year. At that pace, there will be 1,953 new proposed regulations in 2020. Last year’s total was 2,106 proposed regulations.
- Last week, agencies published 567 notices, for a total of 1,725 in 2020. At that pace, there will be 20,536 new notices this year. Last year’s total was 21,804.
- Last week, 1,331 new pages were added to the Federal Register, after 1,338 pages the previous week.
- The 2020 Federal Register totals 5,901 pages. It is on pace for 71,204 pages. The 2019 total was 70,250 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. Four such rules were published in 2019.
- The running cost tally for 2020’s economically significant regulations is currently zero. 2019’s total ranges from net savings of $350 million to $650 million, mostly from estimated savings on federal spending. The exact number depends on discount rates and other assumptions.
- Agencies have published nine final rules meeting the broader definition of “significant” so far this year. 2019’s total was 66 significant final rules.
- So far in 2020, 36 new rules affect small businesses; two of them are classified as significant. 2019’s totals were 501 rules affecting small businesses, with 22 of them significant.
Highlights from last week’s new final regulations:
- If your ocean transportation intermediary license is being suspended or revoked, there are new regulations for your hearing.
- The Labor Department is rescinding some regulations for nondisplacement of contract workers.
- The FDA said “no” to a coalition of environmental activists regarding food coloring regulations.
- Fees for rice inspection services.
- The Drug Enforcement Agency is classifying several types of fentanyl as Schedule I substances, its most severe category.
- The IRS is extending the due dates for certain types of tax returns.
- Small cuts to the Head Start program, which, according to the Education Department’s own research, doesn’t work.
- Minimum bids for an upcoming auction of FM broadcast spectrum.
- A security zone in the waters around Miami during yesterday’s Super Bowl.
- There actually is a hurricane in Alabama. The Coast Guard has issued a new drawbridge scheduling regulation in the city of Hurricane, Alabama.