Dear Members of Congress:
Federal regulations have a significant impact on consumer freedom, public health and safety, and the budgets of all Americans. The goal of regulations should be to ensure the greatest benefits at the lowest possible cost, but poorly conceived regulations can impose high hidden regulatory costs while producing few benefits. In some cases, regulations based on incomplete or inconclusive “junk” science may do more harm than good. For example, overly onerous pesticide regulations can eliminate products that fight disease-carrying pests in order to address negligible risks from those pesticides. In such cases, more people may get sick from disease, though there has been no measurable reduction of risks from the chemicals.
Accordingly, the following organizations recommend support and passage of the “Better Evaluation of Science and Technology Act,” also referred to as “The BEST Act,” sponsored in the House by Representatives Ralph Norman of South Carolina and Paul Gosar of Arizona and in the Senate by Senator James Lankford of Oklahoma.
The BEST Act focuses on improving federal regulations by requiring that they are based on sound science.
Specifically, this legislation would require federal agencies to use scientific research to justify regulations, ensuring that regulators employ some common sense standards. These standards include two critically important requirements: agencies should rely on “best available science,” and consider and weigh the “scientific evidence” when evaluating the science. This demands that agencies consider the full body of research and rely only on the most compelling studies rather than allowing regulators to cherry-pick weak, poorly designed studies to justify regulations.
In addition, the legislation sets standards designed to promote accountability by requiring agencies to provide public access to certain documents related to their rules as well as a summary of risk evaluations and studies that the regulators use to justify rulemakings.
Taxpayers and consumers should expect regulators to deploy such basic standards of science and disclosure before imposing regulatory burdens on society. Accordingly, the following organizations support passage of the BEST Act.
John Droz, Jr., Founder
Alliance for Wise Energy Decisions
Hank Campbell, President
American Council on Science and Health
Angela Logomasini, Senior Fellow
Competitive Enterprise Institute
Matthew Kandrach, President
Consumer Action for a Strong Economy
Thomas Schatz, President
Council for Citizens Against Government Waste
Heather R. Higgins, President & CEO
Independent Women’s Voice
Andrew Langer, President
Institute for Liberty
David Almasi, Vice President
National Center for Public Policy Research
Karen Kerrigan, President
Small Business & Entrepreneurship Council
Ross Marchand, Policy Analyst
Taxpayers Protection Alliance