Tag Archives: executive order

FCC Repeals 83 Regulations

In July, President Obama issued an executive order requiring independent agencies to comb through their books and axe obsolete or harmful rules. A similar order for cabinet-level agencies in January saved an estimated $1.5 billion in regulatory costs, or a little less than 0.1 percent of total annual federal regulatory costs.

The order gives agencies 100 days to act. The FCC struck a little early by announcing yesterday it was getting rid of 83 rules. The White House is expected to release the final package for all independent agencies today. Total estimated savings are $10 billion over five years. Combined with the earlier executive order, federal regulatory costs could go from $1.752 trillion per year to about $1.749 trillion per year.

One of the rules the FCC is chucking is the Fairness Doctrine, which empowers the FCC to regulate the ideology of political programming. It hasn’t been enforced since 1987 because it violates the First Amendment (“Congress shall make no law… abridging the freedom of speech”). But until now, nobody thought to actually remove it from the Code of Federal Regulations. It’s been sitting there the whole time!

Other hygienic measures the FCC is taking include “the deletion of obsolete  “broadcast flag,” cable programming service tier  rate, and broadcast applications and proceedings rules,” according to an FCC press release.

The repeals will become official upon publication in the Federal Register.

6 Painless Ways to Cut Federal Red Tape

President Obama signed an Executive Order this week that will initiate a “government-wide review of the rules already on the books to remove outdated regulations that stifle job creation and make our economy less competitive.”

Over at AOL News, Wayne Crews and I explain why this will hardly change a thing. We also offer 6 suggestions for reducing regulatory burdens with a minimum of political pain. Here are three of them:

  • Appoint an annual bipartisan commission to comb through the books and suggest rules that deserve repeal. Congress would then vote up-or-down on the repeal package without amendment, to avoid behind-the-scenes deal-making.
  • Require all new regulations to have built-in five-year sunset provisions. If Congress decides a rule is worth keeping, it can vote to extend it for another five years.
  • Consider Sen. Mark Warner’s, D-Va., “one in, one out” proposal, which holds that for every new rule that hits the books, an old one must be repealed.

Read the rest here.

Regulation of the Day 62: Government Employees and Texting while Driving

Many, if not all, people depend on government employees to be positive role models for their children. They can give kids something to which to aspire; to show what they can be if they only work hard and stay in school. To give us all a walking, talking example of a life well lived.

It is in that spirit that Executive Order No. 13513 prohibits federal employees and contractors from texting while driving while on duty.

As the Order reminds us, “With nearly 3 million civilian employees, the Federal Government can and should demonstrate leadership in reducing the dangers of text messaging while driving.” The texting-while driving ban will “set an example for State and local governments, private employers, and individual drivers.”