June 24, 2013 by Erin Kesler

Congressional Briefing: Anti-Regulatory Myths: What Regulatory Critics Don't Tell You

Is the annual cost of federal regulation really $1.75 trillion?  Do regulations really hinder job creation and economic growth? Is it true that agencies are free to issue costly regulations without legal authority or political accountability? These are just some of the myths spread by supporters of legislation to further weaken the ability of protector agencies, such as the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), to carry out their congressionally mandated mission of safeguarding the public.

The subject will be explored in detail at a congressional briefing on June 25, organized by the Center for Progressive Reform and the Coalition for Sensible Safeguards, and is hosted by Reps. John Conyers (D-MI) and Steve Cohen (D-TN). The briefing is open to the media.

What: Congressional Briefing: Anti-Regulatory Myths: What Regulatory Critics Don't Tell You, hosted by Reps. John Conyers, Jr. (D-MI) and Steve Cohen (D-TN) addressing common misconceptions about the impact of federal regulation.

When:  10a.m. on Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Where: Room 2237 Rayburn House Office Building.

Speakers: Sidney Shapiro holds the University Distinguished Chair in Law at the Wake Forest University School of Law …

June 10, 2013 by Erin Kesler

Three years later, it was time for a new episode.  Back in 2010, Congress listened to some climate-denial rants, counted votes, and decided to do absolutely nothing about climate change; this year on Capitol Hill, the magic continues.
Also in 2010, the Obama administration released an estimate of “the social cost of carbon”` (SCC) – that is, the value of the damages done by emission of one more ton of carbon dioxide. Calculated by an anonymous task force that held no public hearings and had no office, website, or named participants, the SCC was released without fanfare as, literally, Appendix 15A to a Department of Energy regulation on energy efficiency standards for small motors.
This year, the Obama administration updated the SCC calculation. The update was done by an anonymous task force that held no public hearings, and had no office, website, or named participants. It first appeared …

Dec. 12, 2009 by Erin Kesler

U.S. EPA plans to conduct fewer in-person inspections and bring fewer cases against industrial rule-breakers over the next five years, the agency said in a recent document outlining its goals.

The agency aims to carry out 30 percent fewer inspections and evaluations than the past five years. It will seek to initiate 40 percent fewer civil cases, and it will keep criminal goals mostly static with 2012.

Officials have hinted at this shift in the past, but last month, it showed up in writing, when the agency released its draft strategic plan for 2014 through 2018. The 86-page document lays out all the expected goals -- address climate change, prevent pollution, protect waters -- with some new ideas for accomplishing them.

When it comes to enforcement, the agency wants to target the biggest problems first, which it argues will mean a decrease over time in "conventional performance measures …

Dec. 12, 2009 by Erin Kesler

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