May 17 2017
WASHINGTON—Today, U.S. Senator Tom Carper (D-Del.) released the following statement after the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee approved several pieces of legislation that would hamstring the federal regulatory process and put public health and safety at risk.
“The Administrative Procedure Act lays out a roadmap for federal agencies to promulgate rules fairly and efficiently. This law, which has been refined and strengthened through subsequent executive orders, ensures that federal agencies consider the costs and benefits of rules before they are issued. Further, the public has many opportunities to participate and make their voices heard in the process. Unfortunately, the bills approved by the committee today would instruct federal agencies to implement a regulatory process that prioritizes efforts to reduce costs to industry over protecting public health, safety and welfare.
“These bills will make it difficult—if not impossible—for agencies to deliver commonsense safeguards for public health, public safety and consumer protection. Agencies are already required to conduct an extensive and lengthy process to implement regulations, and I am concerned the legislation passed out of the committee today would severely slow or altogether prevent agencies from efficiently and effectively issuing the protections the public counts on. Just last year, by a broad bipartisan and nearly unanimous vote, Congress modernized the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) in an effort to reform the old law that prevented the Environmental Protection Agency from effectively regulating many well-known dangerous substances. These so-called regulatory reform bills fly in the face of common sense efforts like the one to modernize TSCA and would, in fact, only make it harder for agencies to issue even the most reasonable standards and protections. I know there is a call for Congress to alleviate regulatory burdens on business, but blunt and short-sighted efforts that would result in the shedding of critical protections for the public is not the solution.”