On January 30th, the Office of the Press Secretary released the Executive Order (EO) on reducing federal regulations and controlling regulatory costs. This latest EO requires that all federal agencies “cut two existing regulations for every new regulation they implement”. According to President Trump, this EO is meant to help small businesses by easing “the opening and expansion of small businesses” and the “incremental costs for the new regulations in 2017 will be zero dollars”. The EO requires “for every one new regulation issued, at least two prior regulations be identified for elimination, and that the cost of planned regulations be prudently managed and controlled through a budgeting process.” There will also be “certain categories of regulations that will be exempt from this new policy, including those dealing with the military and national security”.

According to some researchers, this EO could have some significant ramifications. One such researcher, from the George Washington University, stated that “such a measure raises a number of issues, including the definition of a ‘new’ regulation, how offsets should be measured, the workload and enforcement involved, and how likely it is that this policy would survive in future administrations”. A Harvard Law professor believes this EO could be a potential weapon that the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) could use to harass the agencies that are required to follow this order. Many environmentalists and consumer groups have criticized this EO because they feel this order would end up “removing important protections for the public”.

While signing the executive order, President Trump stated that “America’s small businesses have been treated badly and it was virtually impossible to expand existing businesses because of the regulations”. The EO is meant to help with easing the burden on trying to open a new business or expand a current business. A survey produced by the National Small Business Association (NSBA) “found that small business owners reported spending an average of $12,000 a year on regulations and 58% of owners said federal regulations were the most burdensome source”. The NSBA found that the agencies that created the most burdensome regulations are the Department of Labor, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).

Small business owners, are you excited about this new rule? Believe it will reduce your compliance costs? If you want assistance in pre-compliance to ensure you are complying with the vast federal regulations, contact us at info@diaztradelaw.com.