Current procedures for rule-making would be changed to require federal agencies to make all preliminary and final factual determinations based on evidence. They would also be mandated to consider:
The legal authority under which a rule may be proposed.
The specific nature and significance of the problem the agency may address with a rule.
Whether existing rules have created or contributed to the problem the agency may address with a rule, and whether these rules can be amended or rescinded.
Any reasonable alternatives for a new rule.
The potential costs and benefits associated with potential alternative rules.
Rule-making notice requirements for agencies would be altered to require that proposed major or high-impact rules be published in the Federal Register. Public comment periods would then be established, and opportunities for interested parties to hold hearings before any such rule could be held. The ability for interested persons to petition for amendment or repeal of a specific rule would also be established.
Electronic access to transcripts of testimony, exhibits, and other documents filed in a rule-making proceeding would be made available. The scope of judicial review would be revised to prohibit a court from deferring to an agency’s:
Interpretation of a rule if the agency didn’t comply with APA requirements.
Determination of the costs and benefits or other economic or risk assessment if the agency failed to conform to the guidelines on such determinations and assessments established by the Administrator.
Determinations made in the adoption of an interim rule.
Sponsoring Rep. Bob Goodlatte (R-VA) Press Release
The Heritage Foundation (In Favor)
Business Roundtable (In Favor)
Union of Concerned Scientists (Opposed)CBO Estimate
(Photo Credit: Flickr user Kevin Dooley)