Barr Joins Bipartisan Group to Unveil Proposal to Reform Federal Regulations

Bill Would Establish “Regulatory Improvement Commission” Tasked with Eliminating or Revising Outdated, Redundant Regulations

May 20, 2014

Washington, D.C. – Today, Representative Andy Barr joined a bipartisan group of Members of Congress to introduce H.R. 4646, the Regulatory Improvement Act of 2014. H.R. 4646 would reform the Code of Federal Regulations and create a commission tasked with eliminating or revising outdated or redundant federal regulations. The National Association of Manufacturers (NAM), the Progressive Policy Institute, and the American Enterprise Institute support this bill and these important efforts to rein in out-of-control regulations that hinder the ability of manufacturers to grow jobs and expand facilities.

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“The Regulatory Improvement Act is just the sort of commonsense, bipartisan approach so sorely lacking in Washington these days,” said Congressman Barr.  “H.R. 4646 would clear away some of the regulatory burden that is disrupting our economic recovery and impeding much-needed job creation with a logical and measured approach that would also include input from the public.”

“We need to get beyond the tug-of-war between more or less regulation; this bill is fundamentally about making the regulatory system smarter and more responsive to the needs of America’s job creators,” said Congressman Patrick Murphy (D-FL). “If we really want to kick-start job growth in America, we need to shift the discussion away from the standard partisan positions on regulation and start thinking about how we can build an adaptable regulatory framework worthy of the 21st Century. Our plan does just that, modernizing and streamlining the regulatory framework to encourage growth while safeguarding America’s consumers.”

According to an analysis of the Progressive Policy Institute, the Code of Federal Regulations grew to 169,301 pages in 2011 – an increase of 138 percent since 1975. Every President since Carter has undertaken an effort to encourage federal agencies to self-review and self-revise regulations, but these efforts have fallen short of the goal of restraining regulatory accumulation. Over time, as older regulations become outdated and new rules are layered on top, American companies are forced to comply with a growing maze of confusing, often useless regulations.

The Regulatory Improvement Act seeks to balance regulatory restraint with consumer and labor well-being by empowering a new, independent, bipartisan commission called the Regulatory Improvement Commission (RIC) to review regulations as submitted by the public and present recommendations to Congress for an up-or-down vote. Modeled along the lines of the Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC) process, the RIC would be composed of representatives from business and civic organizations.

To read the full text of HR 4646, click here.