Make Regulations and Our Legal System Great Again

Regulatory and legal reform are key components of our “Competing to Win” agenda, and with a new Congress and new president taking office next month, we are proposing detailed solutions to create a smarter and efficient system of governance and eliminate government-imposed barriers to economic growth and job creation.

President-elect Donald Trump has asserted that regulatory reform is a “cornerstone of the Trump administration” and that his team will be “committed to regulatory reform that will produce sensible regulations that allow America to be great.” This is music to manufacturers’ ears.

Manufacturers Face an Immense Regulatory Burden

  • In constant 2009 dollars, federal spending for regulatory agencies tripled from $16.46 billion ($72.44 per person) in 1980 to $50.09 billion ($155.84 per person) in 2015.
  • Through October 2016, the current administration has issued 637 major new regulations, translating to a new major regulation once every 4.46 days.
  • These regulations are placed on top of the thousands of requirements with which manufacturers must already comply, and regulators make no effort to repeal or modify duplicative or unnecessary requirements that exist.

Reforming Our Regulatory System Equals Jobs

  • Regulatory decisions must focus on outcomes to improve the quality of regulations: Agencies should be forced to thoughtfully examine existing regulations and their cumulative costs to improve the effectiveness of existing and new rules. Importantly, sound regulatory analysis should be strengthened and codified so that regulatory decisions are based on the best available science.
  • Regulators must be held accountable with improved oversight to improve the quality of the regulations they issue. Independent regulatory agencies should comply with universally accepted sound regulatory principles, and Congress should improve its oversight of all regulating agencies.
  • Fairness should be restored to our legal system so that manufacturers and individuals in need of relief do not fall victim to opportunism. There should be clear standards for liability, and disincentives for filing frivolous lawsuits should be reinstated.

We are urging President-elect Trump and our leaders in the government to listen to manufacturers and follow our roadmap to expanding our economy and reforming our system of governance. Regulatory and legal reform alone could dramatically improve companies’ ability to grow in America. We should not miss this opportunity.

This blog is part of the NAM’s 12 Days of Transition series, an effort to provide the presidential transition team and other Washington policymakers with a roadmap to bolster manufacturing in the United States. Read the other blogs in the series here.

Rosario Palmieri

Rosario Palmieri

Rosario Palmieri is the vice president for infrastructure, legal and regulatory policy at the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM). In that capacity, he works with NAM members to develop and articulate the association's position on regulatory, civil justice, antitrust, transportation and infrastructure issues. Mr. Palmieri also leads the NAM's efforts in the Alliance for Improving America's Infrastructure, a coalition formed under the leadership of the NAM to address the urgent need to modernize the nation's roads, bridges, rail, ports, inland waterways and airports.
Rosario Palmieri

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