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MRAA supports efforts to stop over regulation

Wednesday, October 09, 2013   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Larry Innis
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One of the biggest issues facing small business, and especially marine retailers, is the continuing movement in the federal government to over regulate. MRAA would prefer that many federal regulations simply be eliminated, but a key first step is to simplify the process.

Three key House bills with companions in the Senate have been reported out of the House Judiciary Committee and are waiting for floor action. These three bills passed the House in the last Congress but the Senate failed to act on them. Over 300 trade associations back the three bills. The bills would provide significant reforms to the regulation process, from how rules are made to how permits are granted in a timely manner.The bills help to reduce the "behind the closed doors” process seen by many businesses in the current process when agencies issue new rules with no notice to the business community.

The three bills are:

· H.R. 2641, the RAPID Act, sponsored by Rep. Tom Marino (R-PA). This bill is designed to create more efficient permitting especially for environmental decision making, empowers a lead agency to manage environmental reviews from start to finish, including setting deadlines, identifying a range of best management practices, and accepting a broader range of relevant existing documents, and directs all the agencies involved in the rule to work concurrently to complete the review process.

· H.R. 2122, the Regulatory Accountability Act, sponsored by Rep. Bob Goodlatte (R-VA). The bill would modernize a rule procedural act last passed by Congress in 1946.

· H.R. 1493, the Sunshine for Regulatory Decrees and Settlements Act, sponsored by Rep. Dug Collins (R-GA). The bill brings greater transparency to the "sue and settle” process.

MRAA believes these three bills would overhaul the regulatory writing process and streamline the permitting process by placing deadlines on federal agency reviews preventing the abuse to small businesses evident in rulemaking. Without significant changes, the rulemaking process will continue to delay many projects, from property expansion to permitting for NPDES.

Hill staff expect the three House bills will see floor action in October or November. No action is expected in the Senate until next year.