H.R. 527, the Regulatory Flexibility Improvements Act and H.R. 3010, the Regulatory Accountability Act of 2011
WASHINGTON, Dec. 2, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- This week the US House of Representatives passed H.R. 527, the Regulatory Flexibility Improvements Act, and H.R. 3010, the Regulatory Accountability Act of 2011, two bills to help restore balance to the federal regulatory system. Both pieces of legislation are intended to help produce more effective regulations at a smaller cost to the economy. If enacted, the bills would increase transparency throughout the regulatory process by inviting more public participation, and they would limit the burden on business owners by requiring cost-benefit analysis of all new rules. The US House of Representatives approved H.R. 527 by a vote of 253-167 on Thursday; H.R. 3010 was approved today by 263-159.
A recent Gallup poll found that compliance with government regulations is the single-biggest problem facing small business owners today. With over 4,200 new rules awaiting approval at a national level, Congress' approval of both the Regulatory Accountability Act and the Regulatory Flexibility Improvements Act comes at a much needed time. Small Businesses for Sensible Regulations Chairwoman Blanche Lincoln released the following statement commending Congress for supporting the regulatory reform bills:
"Congress' approval of the Regulatory Accountability Act and the Regulatory Flexibility Improvements Act is an important first step toward returning balance to the federal rulemaking process. Both bills enjoy the strong support of the hardworking men and women who feel the pressure of government regulation the most – small business owners.
"To get the economy back on a path of recovery, we need to remove the barriers that stand in the way of small businesses' success. These pieces of legislation are just one avenue available. Currently there are hundreds of regulations on the books that the President could address to bring needed relief to the small business community. I stand united with small business owners in calling on the President and other lawmakers to continue to put the needs of small businesses at the forefront of any economic recovery plan."
Last month, Small Businesses for Sensible Regulations along with the National Federation of Independent Businesses sent an open letter to President Obama proposing five commonsense principles to help reform the regulatory system. Many of these same points are reflected in the regulatory reform bills approved by Congress yesterday and today. They include: giving small businesses a greater voice in the regulatory process; providing assistance to small businesses before assessing penalties; requiring major regulation to undergo rigorous cost-benefit analysis; basing decisions only on objective, validated science; and requiring more transparency and accountability.
Before adding any new layers of regulation, lawmakers need to ensure a rational, constructive regulatory system is in place that uses the best available information and takes into account long-term impacts to our economy, workforce, and competitiveness. The approval of the Regulatory Accountability Act and the Regulatory Flexibility Improvements Act marks an important step in that direction, and lawmakers should stand behind it.
SOURCE Small Businesses for Sensible Regulations