On February 24, 2017, President Trump signed an Executive Order (EO) directing the heads of federal agencies to designate a Regulatory Reform Officer to oversee the implementation of regulatory reform initiatives including the directives set forth in his previous EO issued on January 30th. As reported previously, the January 30th EO establishes a “regulatory cap” for fiscal year 2017 and requires federal agencies that propose for public notice and comment or otherwise promulgate a new regulation to identify at least two existing regulations to be repealed. In addition, the January 30th EO stipulates that for fiscal year 2017, the total incremental cost of all new regulations, including those that have been repealed, must be no greater than zero unless otherwise required by law or consistent with written guidance from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB).
In addition to calling for the appointment of a Regulatory Reform Officer, the February 24th EO directs each federal agency to establish a Regulatory Reform Task Force that will have responsibility for evaluating existing regulations and making recommendations to the agency head regarding the repeal, replacement or modification of existing rules. Federal agencies that issue few or no regulations could seek a waiver from OMB exempting them from the requirements of the EO. A list of agencies with current waivers will be published by the OMB at least every three months.
In performing its duties, the Regulatory Reform Task Force is instructed to identify regulations that eliminate or inhibit job creation, are unnecessary or ineffective, and impose costs that exceed benefits. In carrying out its charge, the Regulatory Reform Task Force is directed to solicit input from state, local, and tribal governments, small businesses, consumers, non-governmental organizations, and trade associations. Within 90 days from issuance of the EO, the Regulatory Reform Task Force must provide a report to the agency detailing its progress in carrying out these obligations.