Regulations in 2013

January 14, 2014

Regulators published $112 billion worth of net regulatory costs and added 157.9 million paperwork burden hours in 2013, says Sam Batkins, director of regulatory policy at the American Action Forum.

  • Over the last four years, regulators have published a total of $494 billion in final rules, far exceeding the gross domestic product of countries like Sweden and Ireland.
  • Already, there are more than $87.6 billion in proposed rule costs this year.

Here are some of the top proposed rules of 2013 by cost:

  • The Environmental Protection Agency's Tier 3 emissions standard would add $2.4 billion in annual costs, over 160,000 annual paperwork burden hours, at a total cost of $35 billion in order to reduce the sulfur content of gasoline by two thirds. The Obama administration plans to finalize the standards in February.
  • The Department of Energy's most expensive rule was a proposed standard for commercial and industrial electric motors, which would add $462 million in costs annually (that's $11.7 billion in the long run). Some small manufacturers would have to spend 188 percent of their annual capital expenditures in order to comply.

Here are some of the paperwork burdens for final rules in 2013:

  • New affirmative action and nondiscrimination rules imposed on contractors would add $800 million in total costs and 9.9 million paperwork burden hours.
  • The IRS's individual mandate tax will add 7.5 million burden hours.

In terms of regulated industries, energy and environment were hit with the highest cost impacts from 2013 regulations. Public health and the food and drug industry also saw an increase (at $16 billion in new costs), while the banking and commodities and securities sectors added $4 billion in costs this past year.

Source: Sam Batkins, "A Regulatory Flurry: The Year in Regulation, 2013," American Action Forum, January 8, 2014.

 

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