Trump Administration Cuts Red Tape

President pledges to reduce federal regulations to 1960 levels
December 15, 2017 11:56, Last Updated: December 15, 2017 16:41
By Emel Akan, The Epoch Times

President Donald Trump is pushing hard on deregulation. He disclosed his administration’s achievements in reducing red tape and federal regulations since taking office in January.

“We canceled or delayed over 1,500 planned regulatory actions—more than any previous President by far,” Trump said during his speech on deregulation at the White House on Dec. 14.

He said the results are reflected in the stock market rally and financial performance of U.S. companies.

Within ten days of taking office, Trump ordered his team to slash regulatory hurdles aggressively. He signed in January an executive order that required two past rules to be discarded for every new regulation proposed.

“Instead of eliminating two old regulations, for every one new regulation we have eliminated 22,” he said.

“I am challenging my Cabinet to find and remove every single outdated, unlawful, and excessive regulation currently on the books.”

Trump pledged to restore the regulatory environment of the 1960s.

In 1960, the Code of Federal Regulations had nearly 20,000 pages; now it is over 185,000 pages, he said.

“When we’re finished, which won’t be in too long a period of time, we will be less than where we were in 1960,” he said.

In the fiscal year 2017, agencies withdrew or delayed 1,579 planned regulatory actions.

Deregulatory actions include rules that have been pulled back as well as the withdrawal of guidance documents or reductions in paperwork burdens, said Neomi Rao, administrator of the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs during a meeting with reporters on Dec. 14.

Through the end of September—the end of the fiscal year 2017—federal agencies issued 67 deregulatory actions and three regulatory actions, she said.

By cutting excessive regulations, the federal agencies achieved $8.1 billion net cost savings, which equals to $570 million savings per year.

“The $8.1 billion is a present value number, using a seven percent discount rate,” Rao explained.

The administration released its first “Unified Agenda of Regulatory and Deregulatory Actions,” which provides detailed information on how the government tackles the regulatory burden.

“I think that there is still a long way to go,” said Rao.

The administration will continue rolling back regulations in 2018. Federal agencies will further cut more than $9.8 billion in costs in the fiscal year 2018, according to the White House.

“I want every Cabinet Secretary, agency head, and federal worker to push even harder to cut even more regulations in 2018,” said Trump.

“We must liberate our economy from years of federal overreach and intrusion so that we can compete and win on the world stage.”