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  • Why Do We Have Excess Regulation, and Can We Get Rid of It?

    Veronique de Rugy. National Review. (November 18, 2013.)

    As a general rule, the main incentive faced by regulatory agencies is to produce more and more regulations. They have no incentives to even make sure that these regulations are needed, appropriately addressing a problem, or not causing more harm than good. The result is more and more regulations. How much more? Over at the Competitive Enterprise Institute’s blog, Ryan Young gives a list of 66 new regulations produced in a week:

    It was a short work week because of the Veterans Day holiday, but agencies still added nearly 1,700 pages to the 2013 Federal Register, which is on track to be the fifth-largest ever despite a two-week shutdown.

    • Last week, 66 new final regulations were published in the Federal Register. There were 78 new final rules the previous week.
    • That’s the equivalent of a new regulation every two hours and 33 minutes.
    • All in all, 3,186 final rules have been published in the Federal Register this year.
    • If this keeps up, the total tally for 2013 will be 3,604 new final rules.
    • Last week, 1,689 new pages were added to the 2013 Federal Register, for a total of 68,313 pages.
    • At its current pace, the 2013 Federal Register will run 77,278 pages, which would be good for fifth all time. The current record is 81,405 pages, set in 2010.
    • Rules are called “economically significant” if they have costs of $100 million or more in a given year. No such rules were published last week, keeping the total at 35 so far in 2013.
    • The total estimated compliance costs of this year’s economically significant regulations ranges from $6.42 billion to $11.82 billion.
    • So far, 289 final rules that meet the broader definition of “significant” have been published in 2013.
    • So far this year, 629 final rules affect small business; 86 of them are significant rules.

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