• Video

Significant Regulations and OIRA Review

The Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs does not assess every regulation proposed by an agency. Professor Sally Katzen outlines the four criteria for a regulation to require OIRA review. If the new rule would have a $100 million impact on the economy; if it would have a major impact on the federal budget; if a proposed regulation might conflict or overlap with regulations from another agency; or if the rule addresses a novel question of law or policy. A regulation would be considered “significant” if it fit in any of these categories. https://youtube.com/watch?v=s65fLdj-UfE


OIRA review applies only in the case of significant regulations. Not the run-of- the-mill regulations. For example, if April 15th, the day you have to file taxes, falls on a Saturday, then the IRS will accept taxes on Monday. That's done through a regulation. It's not controversial. It's not significant. On the other hand, if they're setting how much arsenic in the water, that can be highly consequential. So, OIRA looks only at the significant regulations. There are four criteria for that. One is $100 million or more effect on the economy, either cost or benefits, in any year. A major impact on the budget. This would happen with reimbursables or other kinds of federal funding that could have an impact on the budget. The third criteria is where an agency is proposing to do something that is inconsistent with what another agency is doing or proposing. So for example, the Department of Labor might want to have regulations about the transport of hazmats, hazardous materials. The Department of Transportation has regulations about the transport of hazmats. You want them to be consistent, because you don't want a regulated entity to be going crazy trying to figure out which set of rules to comply with. And the fourth is a novel question of law or policy, which is more open-ended. But if it isn’t significant, OIRA doesn’t review it. If it is significant, OIRA does review it.

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