The Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI) commends the U.S. House of Representatives and Congressman Mark Walker for passage of the Guidance Out Of Darkness (GOOD) Act, which will help rein in overreach by federal regulatory agencies, increase transparency, and improve accountability.
Wayne Crews, CEI vice president for policy, said the following about the vote:
“The GOOD Act is an important step toward getting a handle on the thousands of guidance documents, memoranda, notices, and other forms of “regulatory dark matter” that federal agencies employ in ways that can sometimes circumvent the public notice and comment process of the Administrative Procedure Act and inappropriately influence policy. The scope of guidance proliferation and abuse largely remains a mystery. But guidance continues grow unchecked, and whatever positive benefits it may bestow, it unfortunately allows the federal government to intervene more and more into our businesses, communities, and personal lives without input from Congress or agency consultation with the American people. While guidance documents and policy statements are not supposed to be legally binding, the Administrative Conference of the United States has noted the concerns of a regulated public reluctant to ignore them, and recommended better practices. A better dark matter inventory — which is lacking and which the GOOD Act would provide — is complementary to this goal.
“Requiring more disclosure, and ensuring that federal agencies post all guidance documents online, is a straightforward, sensible and essential step for public access and for holding federal agencies more accountable for their actions and interpretations. We also hope the Senate will bring Chairman Johnson’s companion bill to the floor quickly and get this overdue regulatory disclosure legislation to the president’s desk.”
- More analysis from Wayne Crews: Mapping Washington’s Lawlessness, 2017 Edition
- Crews in Forbes: Here’s What Donald Trump And Congress Should Do About Regulatory Dark Matter
- VIDEO: What is Regulatory Dark Matter?