Trump mandates task forces to cut regulatory red tape

Feb. 24, 2017 -- Task forces meant to eliminate red tape are required to be established by each federal agency under a new executive order signed by President Trump today, with each agency required also to evaluate existing regulations and identify candidates for repeal or modification.

The order, signed by Trump, is intended to enforce the administration’s regulatory reform agenda, according to the administration. It requires each agency head to, within 60 days, to designate an agency official as a “regulatory reform officer” (RRO). That individual is charged with overseeing “the implementation of regulatory reform initiatives and policies to ensure that agencies effectively carry out regulatory reforms, consistent with applicable law,” according to the text of the order.

Additionally, each agency is tasked with creating a “regulatory reform task force,” which will evaluate existing regulations and make recommendations to the agency head regarding repeal, replacement or modification of the rules. The rule states that, at a minimum, each task force will look for regulations that eliminate jobs, or inhibit job creation; are outdated, unnecessary, or ineffective; impose costs that exceed benefits; “create a serious inconsistency or otherwise interfere with regulatory reform initiatives and policies;” and that rely in whole or in part on “data, information, or methods that are not publicly available or that are insufficiently transparent to meet the standard for reproducibility.”

Also, rules that are derived from Executive Orders that are no longer in force (because they have been rescinded or modified) are earmarked for special scrutiny.

The order does not include exemptions for federal financial institution regulators; instead, it requires agencies to seek a waiver from the director of the Office of Management and Budget. The waiver, the administration stated, would be granted if an “agency generally issues very few or no regulations.”

Presidential Executive Order on Enforcing the Regulatory Reform Agenda