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HR 527 – Debate Regulatory Flexibility Improvements Act of 2011

December 1, 2011



Passed/agreed to in House: On passage Passed by recorded vote: 263 – 159 (Roll no. 880).

Listening the debate on the floor of the US House of Representitives about mandatory review and acceptance of all business regulations by government agencies, HR 527.  The dramatic descriptions presented by the Republicans about how awful Federal Regulations are, has pushed me to comment.  The result of no regulation is asking for an environment more like China.  China has a hold on the world consumer because it does not regulate its industry. However, look at the problems lack of regulation in China has created for itself and the people who consume their products.  After each environmental or manufacturing hazard, that impacts China’s Internal and International customers, their authorities issue horrible punishment to the designated scapegoat AFTER the damage is done.  This bill does not eliminate regulations, it allows regulations to be delayed or altered at the whim of the majority for the day.  It handcuffs all government agencies from protecting the consumer.

The United States already has environmental problems that it refuses to regulate … like FRACKING and inadequate food safety.  Making business, small or large, responsible for its actions is critical to the survival of this country.  If the regulations at the SEC were actually enforced, America would not have suffered financial collapse of business too big to fail. This bill wants to add new review requirements to further delay implementing regulations that keep this country civilized, safe and accountable. 

What we see is that Congress wants to review new regulations so it can give a pass to its financial contributors.  Why do you think industry and corporations finance politicians in the first place?  No matter who the majority in Congress is, this power to give free passes to specific industries is wrong!  This is NOT about Small Business, this is about the power to protect a politician’s buddies.  This is a bill about bias in favor of unaccountable activities.  We have too much of that already.

Bill Summary & Status
112th Congress (2011 – 2012)
CRS Summary

Regulatory Flexibility Improvements Act of 2011 – Amends the Regulatory Flexibility Act of 1980 (RFA) to revise the definition of “rule” under such Act to exclude a rule of particular (and not general) applicability relating to rates, wages, and other financial indicators and to define “economic impact” with respect to a proposed or final rule as any direct economic effect on small entities from such rule and any indirect economic effect on small entities that is reasonably foreseeable and that results from such rule. Includes tribal organizations within the definition of “small governmental jurisdictions” for purposes of such Act.

Requires initial and final regulatory flexibility analyses to: (1) describe alternatives to a proposed rule that minimize any adverse significant economic impact or maximize the beneficial significant economic impact on small entities, and (2) include revisions or amendments to a land management plan developed by the Secretary of Agriculture or the Secretary of the Interior under specified Acts.

Expands elements of initial and final regulatory flexibility analyses under RFA to include estimates and descriptions of the cumulative economic impact of a proposed rule on a small entity.

Repeals provisions allowing a waiver or delay of the completion of an initial regulatory flexibility analysis. Requires the Chief Counsel for Advocacy of the Small Business Administration (SBA) to issue rules governing federal agency compliance with RFA requirements. Authorizes the Chief Counsel to modify or amend such rules, to intervene in agency adjudication relating to such rules, and to inform an agency of the impact of its rulemaking on small entities.

Revises requirements for agency notification of the SBA Chief Counsel for Advocacy prior to the publication of any proposed rule. Requires agencies to provide the Chief Counsel with: (1) all materials prepared or utilized in making the proposed rule, and (2) information on the potential adverse and beneficial economic impacts of the proposed rule on small entities.

Requires each agency to publish in the Federal Register a plan for the periodic review of existing and new rules that have a significant impact on a substantial number of small entities to determine whether such rules should be continued, changed, or rescinded.

Provides for judicial review of an agency final rule for compliance with RFA requirements after the publication of such rule. Grants federal courts of appeal jurisdiction to review all final rules issued in accordance with RFA.

 Both sides talk a lot about “consequences of your actions”.  Republicans insist that Federal Regulations hurt small business and job growth.  However, from the Small Business Administration Blog:

Today, we need to do everything possible to clear the way for entrepreneurs to go ahead and start that business. One critical way to do that is to reduce barriers that get in their way.

To understand more about these barriers, the Small Business Administration recently traveled around the country to talk to more than 1,000 entrepreneurs, investors, and others who want to play a role in building the next great American companies. A summary of their great ideas is in our new report, Startup America: Reducing Barriers, which highlights five areas:

  • People.  We need to attract and retain the best entrepreneurial workforce in the world.
  • Money.  We need to help startups and high-growth firms access the kinds of capital they need to create jobs.
  • Ideas.  We need to transform more of America’s discoveries and breakthroughs into commercial success.
  • Customers.  We need to ensure that small firms can compete for customers in all sectors and abroad.
  • Lean government.  We need to make the U.S. Government work better for entrepreneurs, such as making it faster, simpler, and easier to navigate.

The best part is, we’re already implementing some of the ideas that these entrepreneurs recommended.

Laws & Regulations

Below you will find Public Law and Code of Federal Regulations titles related to the U.S. Small Business Administration.

  • Code of Federal Regulations (CFR)
    The Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) is the codification of the general and permanent rules published in the Federal Register by the executive departments and agencies of the Federal Government. It is divided into 50 titles that represent broad…
  • Public Laws (PL)
    Public law is the branch of law that governs the behavior of people and is enforced by the state. This section includes Public laws related to Small Business
  • Laws & Regulations Resources
    The following are links that will provide more information on laws and regulations: Federal Acquistion Regulation (FAR) Electronic Regulations (Find, Review and Submit Comments on Proposed …

  • SBA Significant Guidance Documents
    In accordance with Executive Order (EO) 12866 on Regulatory Planning and Review, as amended by EO 13422 (January 18, 2007), and the Bulletin for Agency Good Guidance Practices, adopted by the Office of Management and Budget, SBA is maintaining …


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