U.S. Chamber’s Donohue Outlines Plan for Regulatory Reform

Tuesday, December 2, 2014 - 8:00am

Presents Four Principles to Reform Broken Regulatory System

WASHINGTON, D.C.— U.S. Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Thomas J. Donohue today highlighted the urgent need to fix the U.S. regulatory system and identified four principles for reform to fix the current system and lead to greater growth, more jobs, and better government. Those principles include restoring accountability, ensuring greater transparency, allowing participation by stakeholders, and guaranteeing a safe but swift permitting process.

“It’s time to restore accountability, transparency, public participation, and efficiency to our regulatory system and our government, and to unleash the power of businesses large and small to create jobs and growth without unjustified, unnecessary, and overly burdensome rules,” Donohue said. “This is what our government reform agenda is all about—and it begins by modernizing what has become a virtual fourth branch of the American government—the regulatory branch.”

In an address to business leaders from across the country, Donohue called on Congress to reclaim its authority and exercise rigorous oversight of federal agencies and on the agencies themselves to follow both the letter and the spirit of the law. Additionally, he called for greater transparency in the regulatory process by eliminating sue-and-settle agreements and requiring agencies to fully disclose information and data used in rulemaking.

Donohue also stated that for the regulatory system to work properly, regulators must allow meaningful participation by stakeholders and citizens, informing the public of pending regulatory decisions on high impact rules earlier in the process, sharing data and economic models, and allowing adequate time for comments. Finally, Donohue focused on permitting, proposing that the permitting process can and should be both swift and safe.

“There is a larger discussion we need to have and it’s one that should unite Americans and their competing interests, not divide them,” Donohue said. “It’s the compelling need to reform the regulatory process itself—not for the purpose of steering it to specific outcomes, but to ensure that we have rules that really work, that are fair to all, that meet the test of common sense, and that are compatible with our principles of economic freedom and our strong desire for jobs and growth.”

A copy of Donohue’s full remarks is available here.

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is the world’s largest business federation representing the interests of more than 3 million businesses of all sizes, sectors, and regions, as well as state and local chambers and industry associations.