In the final week before the midterm election, agencies published new regulations ranging from dairy profits to Japanese oranges. Fittingly, the total number of new regulations on the year passed the 3,000 mark on Hallow’s Eve.
On to the data:
- Last week, 60 new final regulations were published in the Federal Register. There were 74 new final rules the previous week.
- That’s the equivalent of a new regulation every two hours and 48 minutes.
- So far in 2014, 3,004 final regulations have been published in the Federal Register. At that pace, there will be a total of 3,573 new regulations this year.
- Last week, 1,329 new pages were added to the Federal Register.
- Currently at 63,779 pages, the 2014 Federal Register is on pace for 77,143 pages. This would be the 6th-largest page count since the Federal Register began publication in 1936.
- Rules are called “economically significant” if they have costs of $100 million or more in a given year. 35 such rules have been published so far this year, none in the past week.
- The total estimated compliance costs of 2014’s economically significant regulations currently ranges from $7.62 billion to $10.87 billion. They also affect several billion dollars of government spending.
- 245 final rules meeting the broader definition of “significant” have been published so far this year.
- So far in 2014, 564 new rules affect small businesses; 81 of them are classified as significant.
Highlights from selected final rules published last week:
- The Education Department estimates that its revised student aid lending policies will increase government spending by $4.2 billion over the period 2014-2024. This averages to $420 million per year, which is why it qualifies as economically significant. Since this affects government spending and not compliance costs, we are scoring this rule as zero-cost in our running compliance cost tally.
- Another spearmint oil regulation. This makes 141 spearmint oil regulations since 1994. See them all here.
- Intellectual property boffins will be interested in a new digital performance regulation for sound recordings.
- Unlike most other industries, much of the dairy industry has guaranteed profit margins enforced by the federal government. The comment period has been re-opened for the latest revision to this corporate welfare program. Weigh in before December 15 if you like.
- The federal government has a Softwood Lumber Research, Promotion, Consumer Education, and Industry Information Order, for some reason. A new rule for its late payment policies is here.
- The Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service is liberalizing its importation policies for fresh Unshu oranges from Japan.