ALL ECONOMIC REGULATIONS ARE TRANSPARENT ACT OF 2014
(House of Representatives - February 26, 2014)

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[Pages H1971-H1995]
From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]




          ALL ECONOMIC REGULATIONS ARE TRANSPARENT ACT OF 2014


                             General Leave

  Mr. GOODLATTE. Madam Speaker, I ask unanimous consent that all 
Members may have 5 legislative days within which to revise and extend 
their remarks and include extraneous materials on H.R. 2804.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore (Mrs. Roby). Is there objection to the 
request of the gentleman from Virginia?
  There was no objection.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. Pursuant to House Resolution 487 and rule 
XVIII, the Chair declares the House in the Committee of the Whole House 
on the state of the Union for the consideration of the bill, H.R. 2804.
  The Chair appoints the gentlewoman from North Carolina (Ms. Foxx) to 
preside over the Committee of the Whole.

                              {time}  1648


                     In the Committee of the Whole

  Accordingly, the House resolved itself into the Committee of the 
Whole House on the state of the Union for the consideration of the bill 
(H.R. 2804) to amend title 5, United States Code, to require the 
Administrator of the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs to 
publish information about rules on the Internet, and for other 
purposes, with Ms. Foxx in the chair.
  The Clerk read the title of the bill.
  The CHAIR. Pursuant to the rule, the bill is considered read the 
first time.
  The gentleman from Virginia (Mr. Goodlatte) and the gentleman from 
Georgia (Mr. Johnson) each will control 30 minutes.
  The Chair recognizes the gentleman from Virginia.
  Mr. GOODLATTE. Madam Chairman, I yield myself such time as I may 
consume.
  Just over 6 months ago, President Obama announced that he would once 
again pivot to the economy. The bottom line of his speech: after 4\1/2\ 
years of the Obama administration, ``We're not there yet.''
  The President was right. We were not there yet nor are we there 
today. Job creation and economic growth continue to fall short of what 
is needed to produce a real and durable recovery in our country. The 
nominal unemployment rate is down, but that is not because enough 
workers have found jobs; it is because so many unemployed workers have 
despaired of ever finding new full-time work. They have either left the 
workforce or have settled for part-time jobs.
  As long as this situation continues, Congress must stay focused on 
enacting reforms that will stop the losses, return America to 
prosperity, and return discouraged workers to the dignity of a good, 
full-time job. The legislation we consider today is just that

[[Page H1972]]

kind of reform. Through its strong, commonsense measures, the ALERRT 
Act will powerfully and comprehensively reform the Federal regulatory 
system, from how regulations are planned to how they are promulgated to 
how they are dealt with in court.
  This is legislation that Congress cannot pass too soon, for while the 
Obama administration's pivot to the economy has faltered, the Federal 
bureaucracy has not wavered an instant in its imposition of new and 
costly regulation on our economy. The ALERRT Act responds by offering 
real relief to the real Americans who suffer under the mounting burdens 
of tyrannical regulation.
  Consider, for example, Rob James, a city councilman from Avon Lake, 
Ohio, who testified before the Judiciary Committee this term about the 
impacts of new and excessive regulation on his town, its workers, and 
its families.
  Avon Lake is a small town facing devastation by ideologically driven, 
anti-fossil fuel power plant regulations. These regulations are 
expected to destroy jobs at Avon Lake, harm Avon Lake's families, and 
make it even harder for Avon Lake to find the resources to provide 
emergency services, quality schools, and help for its neediest 
citizens, all the while doing comparatively little to control mercury 
emissions, which are the stated target of the regulations.
  Title I of the ALERRT Act helps people and towns like Rob James and 
Avon Lake to know in real time when devastating regulations are 
planned, comment in time to help change them, estimate their real 
costs, and better plan for the results as agencies reach their final 
decisions.
  Consider, too, Bob Sells, one of my constituents and president of the 
Virginia-based division of a heavy construction materials producer. His 
company and its workers were harmed by EPA cement kiln emission 
regulations that were technically unattainable and included provisions 
vastly changed from what EPA proposed for public comment; other EPA 
emission regulations that were stricter than needed to protect health, 
gerrymandered to impose expensive controls on other types of emissions 
and which prohibited commonsense uses of cheap and safe fuel that could 
actually help the environment; and Department of Transportation 
regulations that, without increasing safety, vastly increased record-
keeping for ready-mix concrete drivers, unnecessarily limited their 
hours and suppressed their wages.

  Title II of the ALERRT Act helps to protect people like Bob Sells and 
his workers from regulations that ask job creators to achieve the 
unachievable, do not help to control their stated regulatory targets, 
suppress hours and wages for no good reason, and inundate Americans 
with unnecessary paperwork.
  Title III of the ALERRT Act offers long-needed help to small business 
people like Carl Harris, the vice president and general manager of Carl 
Harris Co., Inc., in Wichita, Kansas. Mr. Harris is a small home 
builder. Every day, he has to fight and overcome the fact that 
government regulations now account for 25 percent of the final price of 
a new single-family home.
  Mr. Harris participates in small business review panels of existing 
law uses to try to lower the costs of regulations for small businesses, 
but he has seen firsthand how loopholes in existing law allow Federal 
agencies to ignore small business concerns while ``checking the box'' 
of contacting small businesses. One case is that of the Occupational 
Safety and Health Administration's Cranes and Derricks Rule, which was 
effectively negotiated before small business was ever consulted and 
threatened to impose disproportionate costs on small builders.
  Title III of the ALERRT Act helps small business job creators like 
Mr. Harris make sure that agencies like OSHA stop treating them like 
procedural hurdles and afterthoughts, take into real account the 
difficulties small businesses face, and lower costs on small businesses 
that must be lowered.
  Finally, consider Allen Puckett, III, who is the fourth-generation 
owner of Columbus Brick Company, a family-owned enterprise that has 
been making fired-clay bricks in Columbus, Mississippi, since 1890. His 
company distributes bricks to more than 15 States, has second-, third- 
and fourth-generation employees, offers a fully funded, profit-sharing 
retirement plan and a 401(k) matching program, and has a nurse 
practitioner come on site twice a month to provide a free clinic to all 
of its employees.
  Mr. Puckett's company may now be shuttered in the face of two waves 
of sue-and-settle brick-making emissions regulations that threaten to 
put his company and others like it out of business. After time-
consuming litigation, the first regulations were thrown out in court 
but not before Mr. Puckett's company had already lost at least $750,000 
in compliance costs and the entire industry had lost $100 million. The 
second replacement regulations threaten to be twice as expensive, so 
expensive that Columbus Brick Company expects to have to downsize by 
two-thirds or close.
  The translation for hardworking Americans employed by such businesses 
is: higher prices for goods, fewer job opportunities and lower wages.
  Title IV of the ALERRT Act helps people like Allen Puckett find out 
about sue-and-settle rulemaking deals in time, make sure their concerns 
are heard by agencies and the courts, and have a fighting chance to 
achieve a just result for themselves, their employees, and the families 
and communities that depend on them.
  In all of these ways and more, the ALERRT Act brings urgently needed 
regulatory reform to hardworking Americans, whether they are small 
business people struggling to be heard by faceless Washington 
bureaucracies or whether they are citizens of small towns who are 
crushed by the impacts of regulations that force plant closings, harm 
families, and kill the revenues needed to provide vital services.
  I thank Mr. Bachus, Mr. Holding, and Mr. Collins for joining with me 
in offering the individual bills that now come to the floor together as 
the ALERRT Act, and I urge my colleagues to vote for this urgently 
needed legislation.
  I reserve the balance of my time.
  Mr. JOHNSON of Georgia. Madam Chair, I yield myself such time as I 
may consume.
  Earlier this week, we had a declaration that this week would be 
``stop government abuse'' week. My colleagues on the other side called 
for us to commemorate this week by the introduction of draconian anti-
safety legislation that would allow businesses to declare war on the 
rules that protect Americans, including babies, children, and the 
elderly. That is why, Madam Chair, I rise in opposition to H.R. 2804, 
the Achieving Less Excess in Regulation and Requiring Transparency Act 
of 2014, also known as the so-called ``ALERRT Act.''
  The ALERRT Act is a continuation of the same Republican obstruct at 
all costs paradigm that led to the sequester and to the shutdown of the 
Federal Government. This race to the bottom approach to the regulatory 
process is wasteful and dangerous, and it prioritizes profits over 
protecting Americans.
  Although the ALERRT Act purports to ease the burden of regulations on 
American businesses, it would not create a single job, grow the economy 
or help any small business to thrive, nor does it address serious 
issues--the minimum wage, unemployment insurance, pay equity or 
immigration reform--that would help so many American workers and 
businesses. Instead, the only purpose of this bill is to straitjacket 
the same rulemaking process that protects countless Americans every 
day.
  Title I of the bill imposes a 6-month moratorium on rules. The 
rulemaking process is already transparent, deliberative, and 
exhaustively inclusive of the views of small businesses and other 
interested parties.

                              {time}  1700

  Adding an additional 6 months to this process would do little except 
create uncertainty and increase compliance costs.
  Instead of cutting through red tape, title II of the bill would add 
over 60 additional procedural and analytical requirements to the 
rulemaking process. This is yet another clear message that this bill 
would lengthen, not shorten or streamline, the rulemaking process, thus 
undermining the regulatory certainty and predictability that small 
businesses rely on to make long-term decisions.

[[Page H1973]]

  In case the first two titles didn't adequately convey the message 
that Republicans are dead serious about helping deep-pocketed interests 
create regulatory mischief and confusion instead of offering serious 
solutions, titles III and IV would authorize virtually any party under 
the sun to challenge a proposed rule or intervene in litigation in 
Federal court no matter their connection, or lack thereof, to the 
issue.
  Make no mistake. This bill is a wolf in sheep's clothing. It would 
jeopardize critical public health and safety regulatory protections and 
undermine the very small businesses it claims to protect.
  By giving a handout to well-funded organizations to challenge 
proposed rules, consent decrees, and settlement agreements at every 
opportunity, the ALERRT Act would stack the deck against the public 
interest and the American taxpayer.
  And who would be harmed by this deregulatory train wreck? Every 
American who wants to be able to breathe fresh air and who wants to 
drink clean water; every mother who wants safe formula for her baby and 
cribs that don't collapse on the baby in the middle of the night; and 
every small business competing for an edge in a marketplace dominated 
by large, well-funded competitors. And the list goes on and on and on.
  I hope you will join me in my observation of stop government abuse by 
Republicans week and my opposition to the ALERRT Act.
  I urge my colleagues to oppose this dangerous legislation, and I 
reserve the balance of my time.
  Mr. GOODLATTE. Madam Chairman, it is now my pleasure to yield 4 
minutes to the gentleman from North Carolina (Mr. Holding), a member of 
the Judiciary Committee and a contributor of one of the bills that has 
been included in the ALERRT Act.
  Mr. HOLDING. Madam Chairman, I rise in support of H.R. 2804, the 
ALERRT Act.
  I would like to thank Chairman Goodlatte, Chairman Bachus, and the 
gentleman from Georgia for their hard work and contributions to making 
this legislation better.
  In my district in North Carolina, small businesses are a primary 
driver of the economy. The businesses, like many across the country, 
are being harmed by excessive regulations. Excessive regulations mean 
lower wages for workers, fewer jobs, and higher prices for consumers.
  Oftentimes, Madam Chairman, small businesses are not given enough 
notice of how new regulations will affect their everyday operations. 
They are faced with tough decisions like whether to cut workers' hours 
or wages or adjust their business plan elsewhere. That is why I 
introduced the ALERRT Act, to ensure that the administration publishes 
its regulatory agenda in a timely manner and provides annual 
disclosures about planned regulations, their expected costs, final 
rules, and cumulative regulatory costs, in general.
  During President Obama's first term, our Nation's cumulative 
regulatory cost burden increased by $488 billion. Compounding the 
problem, this administration has failed to make public, as required by 
law, the effects of new regulations in a timely, reasonable manner.
  The administration is required to submit a regulatory agenda twice a 
year, but they have consistently failed to do so on time. You will 
recall, Madam Chairman, that in 2012 the administration made neither 
disclosure required by law until December, after the general election. 
This deprived voters of the opportunity to see how proposed regulations 
would increase prices for household goods, lead to stagnant wages, and 
decrease job opportunities. This is important when Federal regulations 
already place an average burden of almost $15,000 per year on each 
American household. That is not a burden that folks in this economy--or 
any economy--should have to bear.
  Madam Chairman, this bill is not about shutting down the regulatory 
process but about providing much-needed sunlight and transparency. It 
requires monthly online updates of information on planned regulations 
and their expected costs so everyone who is going to be affected can 
know, in real time, how to plan for the regulations' impacts or how to 
cast their vote.
  The ALERRT Act is comprehensive reform that promotes economic growth 
and takes steps toward reform of the regulatory system to provide the 
government accountability that our citizens deserve.
  Mr. JOHNSON of Georgia. Madam Chair, I yield 2 minutes to the 
gentleman from Georgia (Mr. Barrow).
  Mr. BARROW of Georgia. I thank the gentleman for yielding.
  Madam Chair, I rise today in support of H.R. 2804, the All Economic 
Regulations Are Transparent, or ALERRT, Act of 2013, and in support of 
the Miller-Courtney amendment.
  I am pleased that this legislation includes the Regulatory 
Flexibility Improvements Act, a bill for which I am an original 
cosponsor with my Republican colleague from Alabama (Mr. Bachus).
  There are 30 million small businesses in America, and they employ 
over half of our workforce. These are companies in my district like 
Sarah in the City in Baxley or Buona Caffe in Augusta. Every day they 
open their doors and go to work helping American families and drive 
American commerce.
  I also rise in support of the Miller-Courtney amendment. In February 
of 2008, 14 people were killed and 40 people were injured in a 
combustible dust explosion at the Imperial Sugar refinery in Port 
Wentworth, Georgia. Since then, I have worked with my colleague, Mr. 
Miller, to pressure OSHA to mitigate this known hazard. I am hopeful 
that OSHA can complete its long-overdue work in this area to save 
families from ever having to go through this kind of grief again.
  Now is the time for us to focus on getting people back to work and 
creating good-paying local jobs. That is why I support the Miller-
Courtney amendment and the underlying legislation.
  I urge ``yes'' votes on both.
  Mr. GOODLATTE. Madam Chairman, at this time it is my pleasure to 
yield 2 minutes to the gentleman from Missouri (Mr. Graves), the 
chairman of the Small Business Committee.
  Mr. GRAVES of Missouri. Madam Chair, I want to thank the chairman of 
the committee for working with us today.
  I rise in support of H.R. 2804, the ALERRT Act. This legislation 
represents a very important effort to bring some common sense and 
transparency to an out-of-control regulatory process that is stifling 
job growth, especially among small businesses.
  I am especially pleased that legislation which the Committee on Small 
Business worked on, H.R. 2542, the Regulatory Flexibility Improvements 
Act, was incorporated into the ALERRT Act. Again, I want to thank 
Chairman Goodlatte for working with the committee on the title of this 
bill.

  For over 30 years, agencies have been required by the Regulatory 
Flexibility Act, or RFA, to examine the impacts of regulations on small 
businesses. If those impacts are significant, agencies must consider 
less burdensome alternatives. The problem is that agencies still fail 
to comply with that law, and the result is unworkable regulations that 
put unnecessary burdens on America's best job creators, which are small 
businesses.
  In numerous hearings over the years, the Small Business Committee has 
heard about the consequences that burdensome regulations have on 
farmers, homebuilders, manufacturers, and many others. Instead of using 
their limited resources to grow and create jobs, small businesses have 
to spend more time and money on regulatory compliance and paperwork.
  The Regulatory Flexibility Improvements Act is going to eliminate 
loopholes that agencies have used to avoid compliance with the RFA. 
Most importantly, it requires agencies to generally scrutinize the 
impacts of regulations on small businesses before they are finalized.
  Examining whether there are less burdensome or less costly ways to 
implement a regulation just makes common sense. Reducing unnecessary 
regulatory burdens frees up scarce time, money, and resources that 
small businesses can use to expand their operations and hire new 
employees.
  The Regulatory Flexibility Improvements Act is bipartisan 
legislation. It has strong support among the business communities. It 
simply requires agencies to do their homework before they regulate. If 
agencies do their work,

[[Page H1974]]

more Americans are going to be working.
  Mr. JOHNSON of Georgia. Madam Chair, I yield 4 minutes to the 
gentlewoman from Texas (Ms. Jackson Lee).
  Ms. JACKSON LEE. I want to thank my good friend, Congressman Johnson, 
for his leadership and the management of this legislation.
  I would just like us to take a journey down memory lane:
  I am sure that many of us will be reminded of the famous Pinto and 
the crafting of that automobile. I have no commentary on the great 
industry that so many of us admire, but for those of us who have 
memories, we realize some of the injuries that occurred in the 
structure of the Pinto;
  Or maybe it is cars without seatbelts or airbags;
  Or maybe we recall times when we travel throughout our community and 
we notice not only a heavy fog but polluted air. Maybe some of us have 
been exposed to polluted water;
  Or maybe you traveled internationally, even in the 21st century, 
seeing the conditions that many who live outside of the United States 
live in, with the utilization of dirty water because they have no other 
water or the food danger because it is not regulated.
  Well, my friends, unfortunately, the legislation that is here on the 
floor of the House seems to take us backwards down a poisonous memory 
lane. So it is very difficult to support this legislation.
  I said today in a committee hearing that I know that Members come 
here with good intentions. So I will not attribute to anyone that this 
bill does not come to the floor with good intentions, but it is a bill 
that has not been, as a whole, considered by the Judiciary Committee.
  This is now being brought to the floor with three separate bills 
combined, now called the ALERRT Act. But it really imposes unneeded and 
costly analytical and procedural requirements on agencies that would 
prevent them from performing their statutory responsibilities to 
protect the public health and safety. This, I believe, is an important 
responsibility. It creates unnecessary regulatory and legal uncertainty 
and increases costs for businesses and State, local, and tribal 
governments and impedes plain common sense.
  I will offer an amendment dealing with homeland security. We just had 
a hearing today that emphasized the importance of the work of the 
Homeland Security Department. With our new Secretary of Homeland 
Security, Secretary Johnson, we are very much on the right track, 
recognizing franchise terrorism and the need for securing the border. 
Much of the work done by Homeland Security is a regulatory structure.
  Why would we want to impede securing America?
  Well, my friends, that is what is going to occur with this 
legislation, the All Economic Regulations Are Transparent Act.
  I also offered an amendment dealing with baby formula. For those of 
us mothers who have raised children and tend to their needs as newborns 
and use infant formula, it is well known that there is a great need to 
regulate companies that manufacture infant formulas in an effort to 
protect babies from food-borne illnesses and promote healthy growth.
  On Thursday, the FDA announced plans to revise, earlier this month, 
infant formula regulations with an interim final rule that will be 
published soon. But guess what. The legislation that we have will stand 
in the way as an iron wall, if you will, prohibiting any rule from 
being finalized until certain information is posted for 6 months.
  How long will 6 months be in the life of an infant?
  The CHAIR. The time of the gentlewoman has expired.
  Mr. JOHNSON of Georgia. Madam Chair, I yield the gentlewoman an 
additional 1 minute.
  Ms. JACKSON LEE. It will override existing statutes, such as the 
Clean Air and Clean Water Act, and override any aspect of regulating 
this important food product, adding more than 60 additional procedural 
and analytical requirements to the FDA's work on trying to help babies 
and making it easier for rules to be delayed or stopped by allowing 
regulated industry and entities to intervene.
  And so, in actuality, this is not saving money. It will be a quagmire 
of spending money. In the meantime, the protections of our innocent 
babies who demand the responsibility of adults to protect the food 
products that they need for life by good regulations will be stopped.

                              {time}  1715

  Well, Madam Chairman, I don't want to go back down memory lane and 
horrible car crashes and no seatbelts and no airbags and polluted air 
and dangerous water. That is what we will be doing.
  I look forward to introducing my amendment on the floor regarding the 
U.S. Department of Homeland Security. I can't imagine that my 
colleagues would want to stand in the way of securing America.
  With that in mind, I hope that we will find a way to defeat this 
legislation, or to make it better, and ask our colleagues who are they 
standing for.
  Madam Chair, I rise today to speak on H.R. 2804, the ``All Economic 
Regulations Are Transparent Act of 2014,'' the so-called ``ALERRT 
Act.''
  H.R. 2804 makes numerous changes to the federal rule-making process, 
including: (1) requiring agencies to consider numerous new criteria 
when issuing rules, such as alternatives to rules proposals; (2) 
requiring agencies to review the ``indirect'' costs of proposed and 
existing rules; (3) giving the Small Business Administration expanded 
authority to intervene in the rule-making of other agencies; and (4) 
requiring federal agencies to file monthly reports on the status of 
their rule-making activities.
  I cannot support this legislation in its present form for two 
reasons, one procedural and one substantive.
  Procedurally, I oppose the bill because in its present form it was 
never considered by the Judiciary Committee. This bill was reported by 
the Oversight and Government Reform Committee on a party line 19-15 
vote but was not acted on by Judiciary Committee.
  As reported, the bill contained only provisions relating to monthly 
reporting requirements regarding agency rule-making.
  But the bill being brought to the floor now includes three additional 
and very controversial Judiciary bills (H.R. 2122, Regulatory 
Accountability Act; H.R. 1493, Sunshine for Regulatory Decrees and 
Settlements Act; and H.R. 2542, Regulatory Flexibility Improvements 
Act).
   This is not the way to legislate on matters that have such serious 
consequences for the public health and safety.
   Substantively, I oppose the bill because it imposes unneeded and 
costly analytical and procedural requirements on agencies that would 
prevent them from performing their statutory responsibilities to 
protect the public health and safety.
  I oppose the bill also because it creates unnecessary regulatory and 
legal uncertainty, increases costs for businesses and State, local and 
tribal governments, and impedes common-sense protections for the 
American public.
  Madam Chairman, the bill is unnecessary and invites frivolous 
litigation. When a federal agency promulgates a regulation, it already 
must adhere to the requirements of the statute that it is implementing.
  Agencies already must adhere to the robust and well-understood 
procedural requirements of federal law, including the Administrative 
Procedure Act, the Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA), the Unfunded 
Mandates Reform Act of 1995 (UMRA), the Paperwork Reduction Act (PRA), 
and the Congressional Review Act.
   Regulatory agencies already are required to promulgate regulations 
only upon a reasoned determination that the benefits of the regulations 
justify the costs and to consider regulatory alternatives. Final 
regulations are subject to review by the federal courts which, among 
other things, examine whether agencies have satisfied the substantive 
and procedural requirements of all applicable statutes.
  Finally, Madam Chairman, H.R. 2804 in its current form does not 
include an exemption for rules promulgated by the Department of 
Homeland Security to protect the safety of the American people and the 
security of our country.
   For this reason, I offered an amendment that provides this important 
exception and I thank the Rules Committee for making it in order.
  The security of the homeland is one of the most preeminent concerns 
of the federal government. The increased need for national security 
following the attacks of September nth makes it important that the 
Department of Homeland Security not be unduly impeded in the 
promulgation of rules that may preempt attacks against our nation.
  Unnecessary delays to rules set forth by the Department of Homeland 
Security can wastes

[[Page H1975]]

scarce resources that keep our nation safe as well as impede the 
regular operations of the agency.
  The Jackson Lee Amendment to H.R. 2804 will improve the bill. But, on 
balance, the bill still has too many defects and should not be passed 
by this body.
  Mr. GOODLATTE. Madam Chairman, at this time it is my pleasure to 
yield 1 minute to the gentleman from Virginia (Mr. Cantor), the 
majority leader.
  Mr. CANTOR. Madam Chair, I thank the gentleman from Virginia.
  Madam Chair, I rise today in support of the ALERTT Act and in defense 
of working middle class families who face the danger that overzealous 
Washington regulators will destroy their jobs and impose new red tape 
that cuts their wages.
  An America that works allows small businesses to flourish, jobs to be 
created, and for folks to have more take-home pay in their pockets. 
America doesn't work when Washington regulators impose more red tape on 
businesses, large and small, regardless of the cost. This bill fixes 
that.
  Madam Chair, I hear a lot on this floor about the warnings of days 
gone by and the fearmongering attached to trying to at least instill 
some accountability on this bureaucracy in Washington. I don't think 
any of us on either side of the aisle wants to defend overzealous 
bureaucrats and imposing unnecessary burdens that have clogged this 
economy.
  Now, America doesn't work when special interest groups use the courts 
to impose backroom regulations that destroy jobs and reduce take-home 
pay. This bill before us fixes that.
  Now, make no mistake, excessive red tape hurts working middle class 
families. For example, it was recently reported that a proposed OSHA 
regulation would impose costs on a portion of the growing domestic 
energy sector equal to $1,120 per affected employee. These employees 
should not have to worry that the proposed regulations could mean 
smaller paychecks.
  Or take, for example, another emerging practice of Washington 
regulators that hides the real impact that excessive regulation has on 
jobs. Under the pretense of minimal regulatory impact, this 
administration argues that the jobs lost, for instance, in mining, 
manufacturing, or construction, will be offset by new jobs in 
regulatory compliance. Therefore, a majority of their regulations look 
a lot better and not as harmful.
  This is wrong. This is not being straight with the public. We must 
deliver transparency and accountability on the part of this 
administration and its bureaucracy.
  I doubt it is any solace to the plant worker who loses his or her job 
because of regulations that a new job in another sector will be created 
to comply with these regulations.
  Today, we will consider an amendment by a colleague, the gentleman 
from Pennsylvania, Keith Rothfus, to fix these problems. This amendment 
will help protect middle class jobs and wages. It is exactly the kind 
of reform that will make America work again.
  Americans should not have to settle for the ``new normal'' of slow 
economic and job growth that the Obama administration seems to have 
embraced. We, in this House, reject this ``new normal'' and we will 
continue to fight to create an America that works again.
  I want to thank the gentleman from Virginia, Chairman Goodlatte, and 
Representatives Holding, Collins and Bachus, who have worked hard on 
this bill before us, and I urge my colleagues in the House to support 
working middle class families by supporting this bill.
  Mr. JOHNSON of Georgia. Madam Chair, I yield myself such time as I 
may consume.
  Mining, construction work, manufacturing, those are the kinds of 
livelihoods that have made this country a great nation, people being 
able to go to work with a lunchbox in hand and work hard every day, 
make a decent wage.
  By the way, $7.25 an hour for a full-time worker would equate to 
about $14,500 a year. That is just simply not enough for a working 
person to raise a family and take care of that family. They need help 
when they make $7.25 an hour. They would need help from the government 
if they couldn't rely on friends and relatives for support.
  So that is a shame, in this day and time, where a person working a 
manufacturing job, or even a job in a mine or on a construction site, 
would be making $7.25 an hour.
  We should, perhaps, Madam Chair, be paying attention to income 
generators such as that kind of legislation, as opposed to legislation 
like H.R. 2804, which would simply make it difficult to protect those 
workers in those unsafe occupations like mining, like construction 
work, like manufacturing, keeping the work site, the job place safe. 
Regulations are what do that.
  With that, Madam Chair, I reserve the balance of my time.
  Mr. GOODLATTE. Madam Chairman, at this time it is my pleasure to 
yield 2 minutes to the gentleman from Washington (Mr. Hastings), the 
chairman of the Natural Resources Committee.
  Mr. HASTINGS of Washington. Madam Chair, I thank the gentleman for 
yielding.
  I rise to support this measure, and particularly the portion that is 
sponsored by our colleague from Georgia (Mr. Collins) that will ensure 
transparency of Federal agencies' litigation settlement practices.
  In 2011, the Obama administration entered into a mega-settlement, 
which was a closed-door, sweeping Endangered Species Act settlement 
with two litigious groups that greatly increased the ESA listings and 
habitat designations that could impact tens of thousands of acres and 
thousands of river miles across the country.
  These settlements shut out affected States, local governments, 
private property owners, and other stakeholders who deserve to know 
that the most current and best scientific data is being used on these 
decisions.
  In my own district, the Fish and Wildlife Service just listed a plant 
subspecies, despite clear data showing that the plant was not a species 
likely to go extinct. In other words, settlement deadlines trumped the 
science.
  Let me give a couple of examples. These settlement listings could 
result in a listing of the Lesser Prairie Chicken that would impact 
five Western States, and next year the listing of the Greater Sage 
Grouse could cover an area of 250 million acres in 13 Western States.

  Then there is the long-eared bat that could impact 39 Midwestern and 
Eastern States.
  That is not all, Madam Chairman. The settlements also mandate 
decisions for 374 aquatic species in the Gulf of Mexico.
  The point is, important ESA discussions should not be forced by 
arbitrary court decisions or deadlines, or negotiated behind closed 
doors by Federal lawyers supposedly on behalf of the public interest.
  This legislation aims to help correct this abuse by ensuring affected 
States and other parties can have a say in settlements before an 
unelected judge signs them, and it ensures that no settlement moves 
forward without the public knowing what is in it.
  I thank the gentleman for yielding.
  Mr. JOHNSON of Georgia. Madam Chair, I yield myself such time as I 
may consume.
  Madam Chair, oh, how I wish that my friends on the Republican side of 
the aisle cared as much about America's workers as they do about 
America's big businesses.
  Oh, how I wish that they cared more to let a minimum wage bill come 
to the floor, where I believe that most Members of the House of 
Representatives would find it within their hearts to realize that 
$7.25, you just can't make it on that without help. Everyone who goes 
out and works hard every day should be able to be paid a fair living 
wage and be able to support themselves and their family.
  Madam Chair, I reserve the balance of my time.
  Mr. GOODLATTE. Madam Chairman, at this time it is my pleasure to 
yield 2 minutes to the gentleman from Texas (Mr. Smith), a member of 
the Judiciary Committee, and chairman of the Science, Space, and 
Technology Committee.
  Mr. SMITH of Texas. Madam Chairman, I thank the gentleman from 
Virginia, the chairman of the Judiciary Committee, for yielding me time 
this afternoon.
  Madam Chairman, I support H.R. 2804, the Achieving Less Excess in 
Regulation and Requiring Transparency Act, known as the ALERTT Act.

[[Page H1976]]

  One of the biggest concerns that I hear from Texas employers is the 
avalanche of unnecessary Federal regulatory costs. Regulation redirects 
scarce capital from investment and job creation to compliance with the 
Federal Government. In fact, the Small Business Administration has 
determined that Federal regulations cost the economy $1.75 trillion 
each year.
  This commonsense legislation is an omnibus package of regulatory 
relief bills that the Judiciary Committee has worked on in recent years 
to protect businesses. I previously authored two of the bills that are 
included in H.R. 2804, and appreciate their being considered again this 
Congress.
  The ALERTT Act adds transparency to the regulatory process. It 
strengthens existing laws in order to prevent Federal agencies from 
bypassing cost-benefit analyses designed to protect small businesses, 
and the bill requires Federal agencies to pick the least costly 
alternative rule to achieve that statutory goal.
  H.R. 2804 limits organizations' ability to bring sue-and-settle 
lawsuits against Federal agencies. These lawsuits result in one-sided 
regulations that shut stakeholders out of the process. The ALERTT Act 
restores the proper balance to regulatory consent decrees and 
settlements.
  Madam Chairman, I thank Chairman Goodlatte and my colleagues for 
their efforts to provide much-needed regulatory relief to American 
businesses, and I urge adoption of H.R. 2804.
  Mr. JOHNSON of Georgia. Madam Chair, I yield myself such time as I 
may consume.
  Madam Chairman, the majority deliberately downplays the benefits of 
regulation and exaggerates the cost of regulation, when in fact, the 
benefits of regulation far exceed the costs, whether those benefits are 
defined in monetary terms or in terms of promoting values like 
protecting public health and safety, and ensuring civil rights and 
human dignity.
  The explosion that occurred down in Texas not too long ago that wiped 
out an entire town, I believe it was a fertilizer plant. Many lives 
lost. If there had been adequate legislation and adequate regulation to 
protect those people and the workers in the plant, then those folks 
would still be here today.
  What we are doing with this legislation is preventing the 
promulgation of the kinds of rules that would protect the health and 
safety of people throughout America, not just workers, but people who 
have to eat, people who have to drink, people who have to breathe. The 
benefits of regulation far outweigh the costs.

                              {time}  1730

  A 2012 draft of the Office of Management and Budget report to 
Congress on the costs and benefits of regulations concluded that the 
net benefits of regulation promulgated through the third fiscal year of 
the Obama administration have exceeded $91 billion.
  This amount, which includes not only monetary savings, but also lives 
saved and injuries prevented, is more than 25 times the net benefits 
through the third fiscal year of the previous administration, and these 
are important points that I believe my friends on the other side of the 
aisle like to omit from their analysis.
  With that, I reserve the balance of my time.
  Mr. GOODLATTE. Madam Chairman, at this time, it is my pleasure to 
yield 2 minutes to the gentleman from Kentucky (Mr. Barr).
  Mr. BARR. Madam Chair, I thank the chairman for his leadership on the 
ALERRT Act, and I appreciate the opportunity to respond to my friends 
on the other side of the aisle who talk about the importance of taking 
into consideration workers in America.
  And I would submit, Madam Chair, that if we truly are interested in 
the interests of American workers, we would vote immediately to pass 
regulatory relief in the form of the ALERRT Act.
  If my friends on the other side of the aisle were truly interested in 
the welfare of the working people of America, they would stop the 
overly burdensome regulation that is putting the American people out of 
work.
  In Kentucky, in my home State, if you don't think this is true, 
consider the facts, and the facts are these: that the unemployment rate 
in eastern Kentucky is 1\1/2\ percent higher than the national average. 
There is not a recession in eastern Kentucky.
  It is a depression, and it is a depression because of overly 
burdensome regulations coming out of the EPA, which are putting 
thousands of my fellow Kentuckians and all of our fellow Americans out 
of work.
  These are heartless policies. We have lost 7,000 jobs in Kentucky's 
coal mines in just the last 5 years, bringing coal industry employment 
in the Commonwealth to its lowest level since 1927. If you want to talk 
about the welfare of workers, these people need paychecks.
  It is because of unaccountable, overly burdensome regulations, 
unaccountable bureaucrats in the executive branch, that these people no 
longer have the opportunity to provide for their families. This is 
wrong. We need to roll back these burdensome regulations.
  I would just say this in conclusion, Madam Chair. It is dangerous 
when we combine legislative power into the hands of the executive 
branch. Madison, in Federalist Paper No. 47, in quoting Montesquieu, 
said:

       The accumulation of all powers, legislative, executive, and 
     judiciary, in the same hands; whether of one, a few, or many, 
     and whether hereditary, self-appointed, or elective; may 
     justly be pronounced the very definition of tyranny. There 
     can be no liberty where the legislative and executive powers 
     are united in the same person.

  That is what is happening in America today.
  Mr. JOHNSON of Georgia. Madam Chair, I reserve the balance of my 
time.
  Mr. GOODLATTE. Madam Chairman, at this time, it is my pleasure to 
yield 4 minutes to the gentleman from Alabama (Mr. Bachus), the 
chairman of the Regulatory Reform, Commercial, and Antitrust Law 
Subcommittee, who has worked so closely with us on this legislation and 
who is the sponsor of one of the pieces of the ALERRT Act.
  Mr. BACHUS. I thank the chairman.
  Madam Chairman, when the law is against you, argue the facts. When 
the facts are against you, argue the law. When the law and the facts 
are against you, yell like hell and call your opponent names; and that 
is what we are seeing here.
  This is a good law that we are proposing. The facts are on our side. 
And I have got to hand it to the gentleman from Georgia--crib-
collapsing, baby formula-poisoning Republicans--you have done a good 
job, but let's go back to the facts. Get rid of the rhetoric, and talk 
about the facts.
  The number one fact is that America is out of work. The chairman 
mentioned that. The gentleman from Kentucky, Andy Barr, talked about 
people out of work. This country needs jobs.
  Now, you have accused us of being against the American worker. We 
want American workers; we want people to have jobs; and to be an 
American worker, you have to have a job.
  We can talk about the wages, but when you are unemployed, there is no 
wage. You talk about the American Dream, owning a home. It's not 
anymore. It is just having a job.
  And 14 percent of our gross domestic product is absorbed by Federal 
regulations. Now, some of those are good regulations. We are not down 
here on the floor wanting to repeal some safety regulations for cribs. 
We are not trying to loosen the regulations on baby formula.
  We are attacking--and let me say that there are good regulations; 
there are bad regulations; and then there are some really ugly 
regulations. $1.8 trillion is the annual price tag in complying with 
Federal regulations. That is not income tax. That is not health care. 
That is Federal regulations.
  The Small Business Administration, not some Republican, said it costs 
$11,000 per American worker to comply with Federal regulations--
$11,000. We are not saying that all of that is bad, but we are saying 
that of the hundreds of thousands of Federal regulations--and, by the 
way, of that $1.8 trillion, $520 million of that burden was passed in 
the last 4 years, and there are $87 billion worth of regulations 
waiting just this year to be passed.
  Now, the Federal Reserve and Treasury, they come to testify at the 
Financial Services Committee every year, and they say: If you can 
increase the gross domestic product by 2 percent, we can create jobs--2 
percent, if we can grow it from 2 to 4 percent. Well, let

[[Page H1977]]

me submit that, of that 14 percent of the gross national product that 
is absorbed by Federal regulations, we can find one out of seven of 
those regulations to change.
  I will close by telling you a good one. The chairman started by 
talking about the cement industry. The EPA proposed a regulation that 
would have put 200,000 American cement workers out of work.
  When we asked why, they said it is because of mercury and arsenic in 
the air. And we had a map, and it showed no mercury or arsenic around 
any of our cement plants, and we said, well, where is this mercury and 
arsenic coming from? China and Mexico.
  The CHAIR. The time of the gentleman has expired.
  Mr. GOODLATTE. Madam Chairman, it is my pleasure to yield an 
additional 1 minute to the gentleman from Alabama.
  Mr. BACHUS. But our response wasn't to go to Mexico or China. Well, 
it was, really. Our response was to raise our standards or tighten our 
standards to be three times more stringent than the EU. It would have 
cost all the profits of the cement industry for 25 years to comply.
  When I asked someone at the EPA and I said, Well, wait a minute, the 
pollution is not coming from our plants, it is coming from Mexico and 
China, they said: That is not our problem.
  Yes, it is. Just like Andy Barr's problem, because his workers are 
being put out of a job, it is all of our problems. It is my problem. It 
is your problem. It is his problem. We are up here standing for the 
American worker.
  If we grow this economy by 2 or 3 more percent, we won't have a 
problem with jobs, and these regulations will start that process.
  Mr. JOHNSON of Georgia. Madam Chair, the gentleman speaks eloquently 
as a lawyer, and he makes excellent points.
  Regulations do cost. So out of a $15 trillion gross domestic product, 
$1.8 trillion dedicated for regulatory expenses which protect lives--I 
can't put a value on one human life--but tens of thousands, hundreds of 
thousands of people are dying because of unsafe conditions on the job. 
It is certainly worth $1.7 trillion out of $15 trillion in a year.
  I yield 4 minutes to the gentleman from Pennsylvania (Mr. 
Cartwright).
  Mr. CARTWRIGHT. Madam Chairman, this bill is being brought to the 
floor during this week that has been labeled ``stop government abuse 
week.'' I am here to say that this is a bill that has some stopping 
power, all right.
  It would stop the government from protecting our health and safety by 
bringing the regulatory process to a grinding halt.
  And I want to address title I of this antiregulatory package right 
now. It includes the text of the All Economic Regulations are 
Transparent Act. This legislation, Madam Chairwoman, is unnecessarily 
burdensome for agencies.
  Agencies are already required to provide status updates twice a year 
on their plans for proposing and finalizing rules pursuant to the 
Regulatory Flexibility Act and Executive Order No. 12866.
  This legislation would require agencies to report monthly. They are 
already required to report twice a year. This takes them to monthly. It 
is incredibly burdensome on agencies.
  But the most egregious provision in title I would prohibit agency 
rules from taking effect until the Office of Information and Regulatory 
Affairs has posted the information required by the bill online for at 
least 6 months. This moratorium can only be avoided if the agency 
claims an exception from the notice and comments requirements of the 
Administrative Procedure Act or if the President issues an executive 
order. Therefore, it delays most regulations by an additional 6 months.
  I think we can all agree that transparency in the rulemaking process 
is a good thing, but this bill sacrifices common sense in the name of 
improving transparency without achieving any kind of meaningful 
transparency.
  Agencies already make significant amounts of information available 
during the rulemaking process on the Web site www.regulations.gov. This 
bill could simply require agencies to make additional information 
publicly available, but it doesn't do that.
  Under this bill, an agency could post information about the cost of a 
proposed rule on its own Web site for a year; but if the administrator 
of the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs didn't post the 
information for at least 6 months, the agency would be prohibited from 
finalizing the rule.
  Madam Chair, my amendment would strike the moratorium provision in 
title I. Striking that provision would ensure that an agency rule will 
not be needlessly held up because the Office of Information and 
Regulatory Affairs did not post a piece of information online for 
exactly 6 months.
  I have been assured by the Congressional Budget Office that my 
amendment is revenue-neutral. I urge Members to vote for my amendment.
  Mr. GOODLATTE. Madam Chairman, I have no further requests for time. I 
believe that I have the right to close, so if the gentleman from 
Georgia would proceed, I will reserve the balance of my time.
  Mr. JOHNSON of Georgia. Madam Chair, my colleague from Alabama said 
that we all need to come together to find real solutions to create 
jobs. I submit that one way that we could create jobs, in addition to 
making sure that we have equal pay for equal work and that we increase 
the minimum wage to a living wage, another way to do that is through 
immigration reform.
  The Chamber of Commerce and small businesses everywhere have come 
together in support of comprehensive immigration reform. Why? Because 
it creates jobs.

                              {time}  1745

  David Park, the cofounder and creator of Job Creators Alliance, wrote 
in 2012:

       Immigration reform is key to spurring innovation and 
     getting the economy back on track. I am a small business 
     owner who realizes the role legal immigrants play in creating 
     new jobs. As founder and CEO of a boutique merchant bank, I 
     have started or acquired nearly 30 small and midsize 
     companies, creating hundreds of jobs for Americans across the 
     country. I am also an immigrant and an example of how highly 
     skilled immigrants educated in the United States can drive 
     job creation right here.

  So immigration reform, Madam Chair, is a job creator. We can't seem 
to get an immigration bill--which, by the way, has been passed by the 
Senate. We can't get it heard by this Congress. We cannot bring a bill 
to the floor that would pass the House that would result in 
comprehensive immigration reform. We cannot bring a bill to the floor 
of the House that would provide for a raise for Americans who work for 
$7.25 an hour, full-time. $14,500 a year is simply not enough to feed 
the family and take care of one's self. We can't get job-creating bills 
that would stimulate our economy by providing for dollars to go towards 
transportation and towards repairing and enhancing our infrastructure. 
Instead, we get caught up on messaging bills like the achieving less 
excess in regulation and requiring transparency act of 2014, also known 
as the ALERRT Act.
  I oppose this bill for numerous reasons, the most important of which 
is that it would jeopardize critical public health and safety 
regulatory protections. For example, the bill requires agencies to 
consider potential costs and benefits associated with proposed and 
final rules, notwithstanding any other provisions of law. This 
supermandate would effectively trump all other statutes--such as the 
Clean Air Act, the Clean Water Act, and the Occupational Safety and 
Health Act--that prohibit or limit the use of cost information in 
setting health and safety standards.
  In addition, title II of the bill would require agencies and Federal 
courts to consider whether a rule has ``significant adverse effects on 
. . . the ability of United States-based enterprises to compete with 
foreign-based enterprises in domestic and export markets.'' The 
practical effect, Madam Chair, of this definition is that it will 
require agencies and the courts to consider the business and regulatory 
environment of other nations.
  Consider, for example, a proposed rule that imposes heightened clean 
air requirements on American steel manufacturers. H.R. 2804 would 
necessarily require consideration of whether this regulation--which 
could potentially result in higher compliance costs--could make 
American steel products less competitive in a country, such as China, 
that has a much less stringent or no regulatory regime.
  While the economic analysis under this requirement may be deceptively

[[Page H1978]]

simple, its dangerous ramifications for public health cannot be 
underestimated. Chinese officials have only recently begun to 
acknowledge the health hazard risks presented by extensive air 
pollution; and if you have been over there and tried to breathe, you 
know that the air is greatly polluted over there. And so the Chinese 
have finally awakened to that fact, but the end result is that the 
public health of Americans and the safety of the environment would be 
compromised so that American manufacturers can better compete with 
their foreign counterparts. This is a shortsighted regulatory race to 
the bottom that prioritizes profits over saving lives.
  Another fundamental flaw with H.R. 2804 is that it will greatly 
lengthen and not shorten the already time-consuming process by which 
Federal rules are promulgated. Avoiding undue delay in rulemaking is 
important because strong regulation is vital to protecting Americans in 
nearly every aspect of their lives. On average, Madam Chair, it takes 
between 4 to 8 years for an agency to promulgate a new rule. But 
instead of streamlining the rulemaking process, this bill extensively 
adds numerous procedural hurdles to the process.
  In title II of the bill, 60 additional procedural steps to the 
rulemaking process are included. Not only that, title II reinstates a 
long discredited rulemaking process that requires trial-type 
procedures. Known as formal rulemaking, this time-consuming process was 
widely rejected decades ago as being highly ineffective.
  Recently proposed regulations that could be impacted by this and 
other provisions in the bill include rules implementing the Food Safety 
Modernization Act's standards to reduce food contaminants like 
salmonella, and that would help prevent 1.75 million cases of illness.
  Another thing that would be interrupted, another rules process, 
strengthening chemical facility accident prevention standards in 
response to the 2013 fertilizer explosion in West, Texas, that resulted 
in the deaths of 12 volunteer firefighters and two other individuals.
  Another interruption would be preventing the manufacture and 
distribution of tainted and counterfeit prescription drugs.
  Also impacted would be the implementation of the Justice Department's 
national standards to prevent, detect, and respond to prison rape.
  Another interruption would be adjusting the reimbursement rates to 
Medicare providers for end-stage renal disease and setting payments to 
primary care physicians under the Vaccines for Children Program.
  It would also stop the establishment of meal requirements for the 
National School Lunch Program under the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act 
of 2010.
  It would prevent implementation of the Labor Department's standards 
for H-2B aliens in the United States.
  For all of those reasons, Madam Chair, I oppose this legislation, and 
I would ask my colleagues to do the same.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. GOODLATTE. Madam Chairman, I yield myself the balance of my time, 
and I urge my colleagues to support this commonsense legislation.
  Let's begin by reviewing the facts: $1.8 trillion plus--and that is 
just Federal Government regulations, mind you. That is not State 
government regulations or local government regulations. $1.8 trillion, 
one-eighth of the total economic production of our country, is spent on 
government regulations. Some of those regulations are necessary, and 
this law by no means eliminates the regulations. It puts them through a 
process whereby we will know that the regulations are needed and are 
done in the most cost-effective way and in the most commonsense way.
  What will be the result of that? Lower costs for goods and services; 
lower taxes for Americans who face, right now, an average per-family 
cost of $11,500 a year in higher costs of goods and services and higher 
taxes as a result of regulatory burdens. So imagine if some of that 
money were reduced what the savings would be. Imagine what it would do 
to job creation in our country.
  We have talked a lot about manufacturing here today. Last year, for 
the first time in history, manufacturing in the United States reached 
$2 trillion in production--$2 trillion. It sounds remarkable until you 
consider that regulations cost $1.86 trillion--just Federal Government 
regulations almost wiping out the entire economic production of the 
manufacturing sector of our economy if all those regulations apply to 
manufacturing, which, of course, they do not.

  But consider the impact on individuals. Consider the impact upon Rob 
James, the city councilman in Avon Lake, Ohio, who is experiencing 
reduced revenues coming in to meet basic obligations like education and 
emergency services because regulations of power plants with unnecessary 
ideologically driven anti-fossil fuel burdensome regulations are 
expected to destroy jobs in Avon Lake.
  Consider the job loss in the business of Mr. Allen Puckett and his 
brick manufacturing company in Mississippi who expects to have to lay 
off two-thirds of his employees because of the second round of sue-and-
settle brick-making emissions regulation where somebody sues, and the 
regulatory agency makes a settlement of that in a friendly case that 
Mr. Puckett and his employees didn't even know about the process where 
the suit was being brought and couldn't enter into it and say this is 
what is going to happen if you have to implement these regulations.
  Or consider the impact on the cost of buying a home, one of the basic 
parts of the American Dream, when Mr. Karl Harris of Wichita, Kansas, 
says that one-quarter of the cost--one-quarter of the cost of a home 
today is in the form of regulation, the cost of those regulations.
  With this legislation in place, businesses across America and workers 
across America will experience an increase in their profitability and 
an increase in their wages. We don't need to have government 
interference in the marketplace with regard to wages. They would rise 
on their own if the government would take practical steps in reviewing 
regulations before they are implemented in this country.
  Finally, let me say that this is all about the individual and their 
freedom. Government regulation suppresses freedom of ideas and of 
implementing new ways of doing things. Yes, we need to have regulations 
to protect safety in the workplace. Yes, we need to have regulations to 
protect the environment, but they need to be commonsense regulations 
that are going about doing what needs to be done and no more, and are 
going about doing what needs to be done in the most effective way, and 
they are going about doing what needs to be done in a way that the 
people who are going to be impacted by those regulations, who are going 
to see their businesses lost, their workers lose their jobs and not 
even have any notice that this is going to occur.
  I urge my colleagues to support this important legislation and yield 
back the balance of my time.
  Mr. CONYERS. Madam Chair, I rise in strong opposition to H.R. 2804, 
the ``Achieving Less Excess in Regulation and Requiring Transparency 
Act of 2014,'' also known as the so-called ALERRT Act.
  I oppose this bill for numerous reasons, the most of important of 
which is that it would jeopardize critical public health and safety 
regulatory protections.
  For example, the bill requires agencies to consider potential costs 
and benefits associated with proposed and final rules ``[N]withstanding 
any other provision of law.''
  This ``supermandate'' would effectively trump all other statutes--
such as the Clean Air Act, the Clean Water Act, and the Occupational 
Safety and Health Act--that prohibit or limit the use of cost 
information in setting health and safety standards.
  In addition, title II of the bill would require agencies and federal 
courts to consider whether a rule has ``significant adverse effects on 
. . . the ability of United States-based enterprises to compete with 
foreign-based enterprises in domestic and export markets.'' The 
practical effect of this definition is that it will require agencies 
and the courts to consider the business and regulatory environments of 
other nations.
  Consider, for example, a proposed rule that imposes heightened clean 
air requirements on American steel manufacturers.
  H.R. 2804 would necessarily require consideration of whether this 
regulation--which could potentially result in higher compliance costs--
could make American steel products less competitive in a country, such 
as China, that has a much less stringent regulatory regime.

[[Page H1979]]

  While the economic analysis under this requirement may be deceptively 
simple, its dangerous ramifications for public health cannot be 
underestimated. Chinese officials have only recently begun to 
acknowledge the health hazard risks presented by extensive air 
pollution that affects its cities, including its capital.
  The end result is that the public health of Americans and the safety 
of the environment will be compromised so that American manufacturers 
can better compete with their foreign counterparts.
  This is a shortsighted regulatory ``race to the bottom'' that 
prioritizes profits over saving lives.
  Another fundamental flaw with H.R. 2804 is that it will greatly 
lengthen--not shorten--the already time-consuming process by which 
federal rules are promulgated.
  Avoiding undue delay in rulemaking is important because strong 
regulation is vital to protecting Americans in nearly every aspect of 
their lives.
  On average, it already takes between 4 to 8 years for an agency to 
promulgate a new rule.
  But, instead of streamlining the rulemaking process, the bill 
extensively adds numerous procedural hurdles to this process.
  Title II of the bill, for example, adds more than 60 additional 
procedural steps to the rulemaking process.
  Not only that, title II re-institutes a long-discredited rulemaking 
process that requires ``trial-type'' procedures. Known as formal 
rulemaking, this time-consuming process was widely-rejected decades ago 
as being highly ineffective.
  Recently proposed regulations that could be impacted by this and 
other provisions in the bill include rules: implementing the Food 
Safety Modernization Act's standards to reduce food contaminants like 
salmonella and that would help prevent 1.75 million illnesses; 
``strengthening chemical facility accident prevention standards in 
response to the 2013 fertilizer explosion in West, Texas that resulted 
in the deaths of 12 volunteer firefighters and 2 other individuals; 
preventing the manufacture and distribution of tainted and counterfeit 
prescription drugs; implementing the Justice Department's National 
Standards to prevent, detect, and respond to prison rape; adjusting the 
reimbursement rates to Medicare providers for end-stage renal diseases; 
setting payments to primary care physicians under the Vaccines for 
Children Program; establishing meal requirements for the National 
School Lunch Program under the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010; 
implementing Labor Department Standards for H-2B Aliens in the United 
States; establishing the subsistence allowance for veterans under the 
Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment Program; and setting the 
Patent and Trademark Office's fees for patents.
  And, this is just a small sample of the many kinds of protections 
that this bill would jeopardize. I could go on and on.
  This also explains why more than 150 consumer groups, environmental 
organizations, labor unions, and other entities, strenuously oppose 
this bill. These organizations include: The AFL-CIO, The Alliance for 
Justice; The American Federation of State, County and Municipal 
Employees; The American Lung Association; The Consumer Federation of 
America; Consumers Union; The International Brotherhood of Teamsters; 
The UAW; The League of Conservation Voters; The National Women's Law 
Center; The Natural Resources Defense Council; People for the American 
Way; Public Citizen; the Sierra Club; Service Employees International 
Union; the Union of Concerned Scientists; and the United Steelworkers; 
just to name a few.
  Likewise, the Administration issued a strongly worded veto threat 
against this bill. It warns that the bill ``would impose unneeded and 
costly analytical and procedural requirements on agencies that would 
prevent them from performing their statutory duties.''
  Finally, H.R. 2804 will give well-funded, anti- regulatory interests 
even more opportunities to derail rulemaking.
  Agencies often spend many months, if not years, to perfect theses 
rules based on feedback from these sources and their own expertise.
  Under the bill, however, well-funded regulated industries could exert 
even more influence over federal rulemaking than they already do.
  For instance, the bill's less deferential standard of judicial review 
gives additional opportunities for anti-regulatory interests to engage 
in dilatory tactics that can substantially slow down an already slow 
rulemaking process.
  As Public Citizen, a nonprofit consumer advocacy organization 
representing consumer interests, warns: ``This new and inappropriate 
role for the courts is a recipe for more activist judges, increased 
litigation, endless delays, and more rather than less uncertainty for 
regulated parties and the public.''
  Similarly, the nonpartisan Congressional Research Service has 
expressed concerns about the provision's potential to make the 
rulemaking process more lengthy and costly.
  The American people deserve better.
  Accordingly, I strongly urge my colleagues to join me in opposing 
this seriously flawed bill.
  The CHAIR. All time for general debate has expired.
  Pursuant to the rule, the bill shall be considered for amendment 
under the 5-minute rule.
  In lieu of the amendment in the nature of a substitute recommended by 
the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, printed in the bill, 
it shall be in order to consider as an original bill for the purpose of 
amendment under the 5-minute rule an amendment in the nature of a 
substitute consisting of the text of Rules Committee Print 113-38. That 
amendment in the nature of a substitute shall be considered as read.
  The text of the amendment in the nature of a substitute is as 
follows:

                               H.R. 2804

       Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of 
     the United States of America in Congress assembled,

     SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE; TABLE OF CONTENTS.

       (a) Short Title.--This Act may be cited as the ``Achieving 
     Less Excess in Regulation and Requiring Transparency Act of 
     2014'' or as the ``ALERRT Act of 2014''.
       (b) Table of Contents.--The table of contents for this Act 
     is as follows:

       Sec. 1. Short title; table of contents.

         TITLE I--ALL ECONOMIC REGULATIONS ARE TRANSPARENT ACT

       Sec. 101. Short title.
       Sec. 102. Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs 
           publication of information relating to rules.

                TITLE II--REGULATORY ACCOUNTABILITY ACT

       Sec. 201. Short title.
       Sec. 202. Definitions.
       Sec. 203. Rule making.
       Sec. 204. Agency guidance; procedures to issue major 
           guidance; presidential authority to issue guidelines 
           for issuance of guidance.
       Sec. 205. Hearings; presiding employees; powers and duties; 
           burden of proof; evidence; record as basis of decision.
       Sec. 206. Actions reviewable.
       Sec. 207. Scope of review.
       Sec. 208. Added definition.
       Sec. 209. Effective date.

           TITLE III--REGULATORY FLEXIBILITY IMPROVEMENTS ACT

       Sec. 301. Short title; table of contents.
       Sec. 302. Clarification and expansion of rules covered by 
           the Regulatory Flexibility Act.
       Sec. 303. Expansion of report of regulatory agenda.
       Sec. 304. Requirements providing for more detailed 
           analyses.
       Sec. 305. Repeal of waiver and delay authority; additional 
           powers of the Chief Counsel for Advocacy.
       Sec. 306. Procedures for gathering comments.
       Sec. 307. Periodic review of rules.
       Sec. 308. Judicial review of compliance with the 
           requirements of the Regulatory Flexibility Act 
           available after publication of the final rule.
       Sec. 309. Jurisdiction of court of appeals over rules 
           implementing the Regulatory Flexibility Act.
       Sec. 310. Establishment and approval of small business 
           concern size standards by Chief Counsel for Advocacy.
       Sec. 311. Clerical amendments.
       Sec. 312. Agency preparation of guides.
       Sec. 313. Comptroller General report.

     TITLE IV--SUNSHINE FOR REGULATORY DECREES AND SETTLEMENTS ACT

       Sec. 401. Short title.
       Sec. 402. Definitions.
       Sec. 403. Consent decree and settlement reform.
       Sec. 404. Motions to modify consent decrees.
       Sec. 405. Effective date.

         TITLE I--ALL ECONOMIC REGULATIONS ARE TRANSPARENT ACT

     SEC. 101. SHORT TITLE.

       This title may be cited as the ``All Economic Regulations 
     are Transparent Act of 2014'' or the ``ALERT Act of 2014''.

     SEC. 102. OFFICE OF INFORMATION AND REGULATORY AFFAIRS 
                   PUBLICATION OF INFORMATION RELATING TO RULES.

       (a) Amendment.--Title 5, United States Code, is amended by 
     inserting after chapter 6, the following new chapter:

``CHAPTER 6A--OFFICE OF INFORMATION AND REGULATORY AFFAIRS PUBLICATION 
                    OF INFORMATION RELATING TO RULES

``Sec.
``651. Agency monthly submission to Office of Information and 
              Regulatory Affairs.
``652. Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs Publications.
``653. Requirement for rules to appear in agency-specific monthly 
              publication.
``654. Definitions.

     ``Sec. 651. Agency monthly submission to Office of 
       Information and Regulatory Affairs

       ``On a monthly basis, the head of each agency shall submit 
     to the Administrator of

[[Page H1980]]

     the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (referred to 
     in this chapter as the `Administrator'), in such a manner as 
     the Administrator may reasonably require, the following 
     information:
       ``(1) For each rule that the agency expects to propose or 
     finalize during the following year:
       ``(A) A summary of the nature of the rule, including the 
     regulation identifier number and the docket number for the 
     rule.
       ``(B) The objectives of and legal basis for the issuance of 
     the rule, including--
       ``(i) any statutory or judicial deadline; and
       ``(ii) whether the legal basis restricts or precludes the 
     agency from conducting an analysis of the costs or benefits 
     of the rule during the rule making, and if not, whether the 
     agency plans to conduct an analysis of the costs or benefits 
     of the rule during the rule making.
       ``(C) Whether the agency plans to claim an exemption from 
     the requirements of section 553 pursuant to section 
     553(b)(B).
       ``(D) The stage of the rule making as of the date of 
     submission.
       ``(E) Whether the rule is subject to review under section 
     610.
       ``(2) For any rule for which the agency expects to finalize 
     during the following year and has issued a general notice of 
     proposed rule making--
       ``(A) an approximate schedule for completing action on the 
     rule;
       ``(B) an estimate of whether the rule will cost--
       ``(i) less than $50,000,000;
       ``(ii) $50,000,000 or more but less than $100,000,000;
       ``(iii) $100,000,000 or more but less than $500,000,000;
       ``(iv) $500,000,000 or more but less than $1,000,000,000;
       ``(v) $1,000,000,000 or more but less than $5,000,000,000;
       ``(vi) $5,000,000,000 or more but less than 
     $10,000,000,000; or
       ``(vii) $10,000,000,000 or more; and
       ``(C) any estimate of the economic effects of the rule, 
     including any estimate of the net effect that the rule will 
     have on the number of jobs in the United States, that was 
     considered in drafting the rule. If such estimate is not 
     available, a statement affirming that no information on the 
     economic effects, including the effect on the number of jobs, 
     of the rule has been considered.

     ``Sec. 652. Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs 
       Publications

       ``(a) Agency-specific Information Published Monthly.--Not 
     later than 30 days after the submission of information 
     pursuant to section 651, the Administrator shall make such 
     information publicly available on the Internet.
       ``(b) Cumulative Assessment of Agency Rule Making Published 
     Annually.--
       ``(1) Publication in the federal register.--Not later than 
     October 1 of each year, the Administrator shall publish in 
     the Federal Register, for the previous year the following:
       ``(A) The information that the Administrator received from 
     the head of each agency under section 651.
       ``(B) The number of rules and a list of each such rule--
       ``(i) that was proposed by each agency, including, for each 
     such rule, an indication of whether the issuing agency 
     conducted an analysis of the costs or benefits of the rule; 
     and
       ``(ii) that was finalized by each agency, including for 
     each such rule an indication of whether--

       ``(I) the issuing agency conducted an analysis of the costs 
     or benefits of the rule;
       ``(II) the agency claimed an exemption from the procedures 
     under section 553 pursuant to section 553(b)(B); and
       ``(III) the rule was issued pursuant to a statutory mandate 
     or the rule making is committed to agency discretion by law.

       ``(C) The number of agency actions and a list of each such 
     action taken by each agency that--
       ``(i) repealed a rule;
       ``(ii) reduced the scope of a rule;
       ``(iii) reduced the cost of a rule; or
       ``(iv) accelerated the expiration date of a rule.
       ``(D) The total cost (without reducing the cost by any 
     offsetting benefits) of all rules proposed or finalized, and 
     the number of rules for which an estimate of the cost of the 
     rule was not available.
       ``(2) Publication on the internet.--Not later than October 
     1 of each year, the Administrator shall make publicly 
     available on the Internet the following:
       ``(A) The analysis of the costs or benefits, if conducted, 
     for each proposed rule or final rule issued by an agency for 
     the previous year.
       ``(B) The docket number and regulation identifier number 
     for each proposed or final rule issued by an agency for the 
     previous year.
       ``(C) The number of rules and a list of each such rule 
     reviewed by the Director of the Office of Management and 
     Budget for the previous year, and the authority under which 
     each such review was conducted.
       ``(D) The number of rules and a list of each such rule for 
     which the head of an agency completed a review under section 
     610 for the previous year.
       ``(E) The number of rules and a list of each such rule 
     submitted to the Comptroller General under section 801.
       ``(F) The number of rules and a list of each such rule for 
     which a resolution of disapproval was introduced in either 
     the House of Representatives or the Senate under section 802.

     ``Sec. 653. Requirement for rules to appear in agency-
       specific monthly publication

       ``(a) In General.--Subject to subsection (b), a rule may 
     not take effect until the information required to be made 
     publicly available on the Internet regarding such rule 
     pursuant to section 652(a) has been so available for not less 
     than 6 months.
       ``(b) Exceptions.--The requirement of subsection (a) shall 
     not apply in the case of a rule--
       ``(1) for which the agency issuing the rule claims an 
     exception under section 553(b)(B); or
       ``(2) which the President determines by Executive Order 
     should take effect because the rule is--
       ``(A) necessary because of an imminent threat to health or 
     safety or other emergency;
       ``(B) necessary for the enforcement of criminal laws;
       ``(C) necessary for national security; or
       ``(D) issued pursuant to any statute implementing an 
     international trade agreement.

     ``Sec. 654. Definitions

       ``In this chapter, the terms `agency', `agency action', 
     `rule', and `rule making' have the meanings given those terms 
     in section 551.''.
       (b) Technical and Conforming Amendment.--The table of 
     chapters for part I of title 5, United States Code, is 
     amended by inserting after the item relating to chapter 5, 
     the following:

``6. The Analysis of Regulatory Functions......................601 ....

``6A. Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs Publication of 
    Information Relating to Rules............................651''.....

       (c) Effective Dates.--
       (1) Agency monthly submission to the office of information 
     and regulatory affairs.--The first submission required 
     pursuant to section 651 of title 5, United States Code, as 
     added by subsection (a), shall be submitted not later than 30 
     days after the date of the enactment of this title, and 
     monthly thereafter.
       (2) Cumulative assessment of agency rule making.--
       (A) In general.--Subsection (b) of section 652 of title 5, 
     United States Code, as added by subsection (a), shall take 
     effect on the date that is 60 days after the date of the 
     enactment of this title.
       (B) Deadline.--The first requirement to publish or make 
     available, as the case may be, under subsection (b) of 
     section 652 of title 5, United States Code, as added by 
     subsection (a), shall be the first October 1 after the 
     effective date of such subsection.
       (C) First publication.--The requirement under section 
     652(b)(2)(A) of title 5, United States Code, as added by 
     subsection (a), shall include for the first publication, any 
     analysis of the costs or benefits conducted for a proposed or 
     final rule, for the 10 years before the date of the enactment 
     of this title.
       (3) Requirement for rules to appear in agency-specific 
     monthly publication.--Section 653 of title 5, United States 
     Code, as added by subsection (a), shall take effect on the 
     date that is 8 months after the date of the enactment of this 
     title.

                TITLE II--REGULATORY ACCOUNTABILITY ACT

     SEC. 201. SHORT TITLE.

       This title may be cited as the ``Regulatory Accountability 
     Act of 2014''.

     SEC. 202. DEFINITIONS.

       Section 551 of title 5, United States Code, is amended--
       (1) in paragraph (13), by striking ``and'' at the end;
       (2) in paragraph (14), by striking the period at the end 
     and inserting a semicolon; and
       (3) by adding at the end the following:
       ``(15) `major rule' means any rule that the Administrator 
     of the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs 
     determines is likely to impose--
       ``(A) an annual cost on the economy of $100,000,000 or 
     more, adjusted annually for inflation;
       ``(B) a major increase in costs or prices for consumers, 
     individual industries, Federal, State, local, or tribal 
     government agencies, or geographic regions;
       ``(C) significant adverse effects on competition, 
     employment, investment, productivity, innovation, or on the 
     ability of United States-based enterprises to compete with 
     foreign-based enterprises in domestic and export markets; or
       ``(D) significant impacts on multiple sectors of the 
     economy;
       ``(16) `high-impact rule' means any rule that the 
     Administrator of the Office of Information and Regulatory 
     Affairs determines is likely to impose an annual cost on the 
     economy of $1,000,000,000 or more, adjusted annually for 
     inflation;
       ``(17) `guidance' means an agency statement of general 
     applicability and future effect, other than a regulatory 
     action, that sets forth a policy on a statutory, regulatory 
     or technical issue or an interpretation of a statutory or 
     regulatory issue;
       ``(18) `major guidance' means guidance that the 
     Administrator of the Office of Information and Regulatory 
     Affairs finds is likely to lead to--
       ``(A) an annual cost on the economy of $100,000,000 or 
     more, adjusted annually for inflation;

[[Page H1981]]

       ``(B) a major increase in costs or prices for consumers, 
     individual industries, Federal, State, local or tribal 
     government agencies, or geographic regions;
       ``(C) significant adverse effects on competition, 
     employment, investment, productivity, innovation, or on the 
     ability of United States-based enterprises to compete with 
     foreign-based enterprises in domestic and export markets; or
       ``(D) significant impacts on multiple sectors of the 
     economy;
       ``(19) the `Information Quality Act' means section 515 of 
     Public Law 106-554, the Treasury and General Government 
     Appropriations Act for Fiscal Year 2001, and guidelines 
     issued by the Administrator of the Office of Information and 
     Regulatory Affairs or other agencies pursuant to the Act; and
       ``(20) the `Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs' 
     means the office established under section 3503 of chapter 35 
     of title 44 and any successor to that office.''.

     SEC. 203. RULE MAKING.

       (a) Section 553(a) of title 5, United States Code, is 
     amended by striking ``(a) This section applies'' and 
     inserting ``(a) Applicability.--This section applies''.
       (b) Section 553 of title 5, United States Code, is amended 
     by striking subsections (b) through (e) and inserting the 
     following:
       ``(b) Rule Making Considerations.--In a rule making, an 
     agency shall make all preliminary and final factual 
     determinations based on evidence and consider, in addition to 
     other applicable considerations, the following:
       ``(1) The legal authority under which a rule may be 
     proposed, including whether a rule making is required by 
     statute, and if so, whether by a specific date, or whether 
     the agency has discretion to commence a rule making.
       ``(2) Other statutory considerations applicable to whether 
     the agency can or should propose a rule or undertake other 
     agency action.
       ``(3) The specific nature and significance of the problem 
     the agency may address with a rule (including the degree and 
     nature of risks the problem poses and the priority of 
     addressing those risks compared to other matters or 
     activities within the agency's jurisdiction), whether the 
     problem warrants new agency action, and the countervailing 
     risks that may be posed by alternatives for new agency 
     action.
       ``(4) Whether existing rules have created or contributed to 
     the problem the agency may address with a rule and whether 
     those rules could be amended or rescinded to address the 
     problem in whole or part.
       ``(5) Any reasonable alternatives for a new rule or other 
     response identified by the agency or interested persons, 
     including not only responses that mandate particular conduct 
     or manners of compliance, but also--
       ``(A) the alternative of no Federal response;
       ``(B) amending or rescinding existing rules;
       ``(C) potential regional, State, local, or tribal 
     regulatory action or other responses that could be taken in 
     lieu of agency action; and
       ``(D) potential responses that--
       ``(i) specify performance objectives rather than conduct or 
     manners of compliance;
       ``(ii) establish economic incentives to encourage desired 
     behavior;
       ``(iii) provide information upon which choices can be made 
     by the public; or
       ``(iv) incorporate other innovative alternatives rather 
     than agency actions that specify conduct or manners of 
     compliance.
       ``(6) Notwithstanding any other provision of law--
       ``(A) the potential costs and benefits associated with 
     potential alternative rules and other responses considered 
     under section 553(b)(5), including direct, indirect, and 
     cumulative costs and benefits and estimated impacts on jobs 
     (including an estimate of the net gain or loss in domestic 
     jobs), economic growth, innovation, and economic 
     competitiveness;
       ``(B) means to increase the cost-effectiveness of any 
     Federal response; and
       ``(C) incentives for innovation, consistency, 
     predictability, lower costs of enforcement and compliance (to 
     government entities, regulated entities, and the public), and 
     flexibility.
       ``(c) Advance Notice of Proposed Rule Making for Major 
     Rules, High-Impact Rules, and Rules Involving Novel Legal or 
     Policy Issues.--In the case of a rule making for a major rule 
     or high-impact rule or a rule that involves a novel legal or 
     policy issue arising out of statutory mandates, not later 
     than 90 days before a notice of proposed rule making is 
     published in the Federal Register, an agency shall publish 
     advance notice of proposed rule making in the Federal 
     Register. In publishing such advance notice, the agency 
     shall--
       ``(1) include a written statement identifying, at a 
     minimum--
       ``(A) the nature and significance of the problem the agency 
     may address with a rule, including data and other evidence 
     and information on which the agency expects to rely for the 
     proposed rule;
       ``(B) the legal authority under which a rule may be 
     proposed, including whether a rule making is required by 
     statute, and if so, whether by a specific date, or whether 
     the agency has discretion to commence a rule making;
       ``(C) preliminary information available to the agency 
     concerning the other considerations specified in subsection 
     (b); and
       ``(D) in the case of a rule that involves a novel legal or 
     policy issue arising out of statutory mandates, the nature of 
     and potential reasons to adopt the novel legal or policy 
     position upon which the agency may base a proposed rule;
       ``(2) solicit written data, views or argument from 
     interested persons concerning the information and issues 
     addressed in the advance notice; and
       ``(3) provide for a period of not fewer than 60 days for 
     interested persons to submit such written data, views, or 
     argument to the agency.
       ``(d) Notices of Proposed Rule Making; Determinations of 
     Other Agency Course.--(1) Before it determines to propose a 
     rule, and following completion of procedures under subsection 
     (c), if applicable, the agency shall consult with the 
     Administrator of the Office of Information and Regulatory 
     Affairs. If the agency thereafter determines to propose a 
     rule, the agency shall publish a notice of proposed rule 
     making, which shall include--
       ``(A) a statement of the time, place, and nature of public 
     rule making proceedings;
       ``(B) reference to the legal authority under which the rule 
     is proposed;
       ``(C) the terms of the proposed rule;
       ``(D) a description of information known to the agency on 
     the subject and issues of the proposed rule, including but 
     not limited to--
       ``(i) a summary of information known to the agency 
     concerning the considerations specified in subsection (b);
       ``(ii) a summary of additional information the agency 
     provided to and obtained from interested persons under 
     subsection (c);
       ``(iii) a summary of any preliminary risk assessment or 
     regulatory impact analysis performed by the agency; and
       ``(iv) information specifically identifying all data, 
     studies, models, and other evidence or information considered 
     or used by the agency in connection with its determination to 
     propose the rule;
       ``(E)(i) a reasoned preliminary determination of need for 
     the rule based on the information described under 
     subparagraph (D); and
       ``(ii) an additional statement of whether a rule is 
     required by statute;
       ``(F) a reasoned preliminary determination that the 
     benefits of the proposed rule meet the relevant statutory 
     objectives and justify the costs of the proposed rule 
     (including all costs to be considered under subsection 
     (b)(6)), based on the information described under 
     subparagraph (D);
       ``(G) a discussion of--
       ``(i) the alternatives to the proposed rule, and other 
     alternative responses, considered by the agency under 
     subsection (b);
       ``(ii) the costs and benefits of those alternatives 
     (including all costs to be considered under subsection 
     (b)(6));
       ``(iii) whether those alternatives meet relevant statutory 
     objectives; and
       ``(iv) why the agency did not propose any of those 
     alternatives; and
       ``(H)(i) a statement of whether existing rules have created 
     or contributed to the problem the agency seeks to address 
     with the proposed rule; and
       ``(ii) if so, whether or not the agency proposes to amend 
     or rescind any such rules, and why.

     All information provided to or considered by the agency, and 
     steps to obtain information by the agency, in connection with 
     its determination to propose the rule, including any 
     preliminary risk assessment or regulatory impact analysis 
     prepared by the agency and all other information prepared or 
     described by the agency under subparagraph (D) and, at the 
     discretion of the President or the Administrator of the 
     Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, information 
     provided by that Office in consultations with the agency, 
     shall be placed in the docket for the proposed rule and made 
     accessible to the public by electronic means and otherwise 
     for the public's use when the notice of proposed rule making 
     is published.
       ``(2)(A) If the agency undertakes procedures under 
     subsection (c) and determines thereafter not to propose a 
     rule, the agency shall, following consultation with the 
     Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, publish a 
     notice of determination of other agency course. A notice of 
     determination of other agency course shall include 
     information required by paragraph (1)(D) to be included in a 
     notice of proposed rule making and a description of the 
     alternative response the agency determined to adopt.
       ``(B) If in its determination of other agency course the 
     agency makes a determination to amend or rescind an existing 
     rule, the agency need not undertake additional proceedings 
     under subsection (c) before it publishes a notice of proposed 
     rule making to amend or rescind the existing rule.

     All information provided to or considered by the agency, and 
     steps to obtain information by the agency, in connection with 
     its determination of other agency course, including but not 
     limited to any preliminary risk assessment or regulatory 
     impact analysis prepared by the agency and all other 
     information that would be required to be prepared or 
     described by the agency under paragraph (1)(D) if the agency 
     had determined to publish a notice of proposed rule making 
     and, at the discretion of the President or the Administrator 
     of the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, 
     information provided by that Office in consultations with the 
     agency, shall be placed in the docket for the determination 
     and made accessible to the public by electronic means and 
     otherwise for the public's use

[[Page H1982]]

     when the notice of determination is published.
       ``(3) After notice of proposed rule making required by this 
     section, the agency shall provide interested persons an 
     opportunity to participate in the rule making through 
     submission of written data, views, or arguments with or 
     without opportunity for oral presentation, except that--
       ``(A) if a hearing is required under paragraph (4)(B) or 
     subsection (e), opportunity for oral presentation shall be 
     provided pursuant to that requirement; or
       ``(B) when other than under subsection (e) of this section 
     rules are required by statute or at the discretion of the 
     agency to be made on the record after opportunity for an 
     agency hearing, sections 556 and 557 shall apply, and 
     paragraph (4), the requirements of subsection (e) to receive 
     comment outside of the procedures of sections 556 and 557, 
     and the petition procedures of subsection (e)(6) shall not 
     apply.

     The agency shall provide not fewer than 60 days for 
     interested persons to submit written data, views, or argument 
     (or 120 days in the case of a proposed major or high-impact 
     rule).
       ``(4)(A) Within 30 days of publication of notice of 
     proposed rule making, a member of the public may petition for 
     a hearing in accordance with section 556 to determine whether 
     any evidence or other information upon which the agency bases 
     the proposed rule fails to comply with the Information 
     Quality Act.
       ``(B)(i) The agency may, upon review of the petition, 
     determine without further process to exclude from the rule 
     making the evidence or other information that is the subject 
     of the petition and, if appropriate, withdraw the proposed 
     rule. The agency shall promptly publish any such 
     determination.
       ``(ii) If the agency does not resolve the petition under 
     the procedures of clause (i), it shall grant any such 
     petition that presents a prima facie case that evidence or 
     other information upon which the agency bases the proposed 
     rule fails to comply with the Information Quality Act, hold 
     the requested hearing not later than 30 days after receipt of 
     the petition, provide a reasonable opportunity for cross-
     examination at the hearing, and decide the issues presented 
     by the petition not later than 60 days after receipt of the 
     petition. The agency may deny any petition that it determines 
     does not present such a prima facie case.
       ``(C) There shall be no judicial review of the agency's 
     disposition of issues considered and decided or determined 
     under subparagraph (B)(ii) until judicial review of the 
     agency's final action. There shall be no judicial review of 
     an agency's determination to withdraw a proposed rule under 
     subparagraph (B)(i) on the basis of the petition.
       ``(D) Failure to petition for a hearing under this 
     paragraph shall not preclude judicial review of any claim 
     based on the Information Quality Act under chapter 7 of this 
     title.
       ``(e) Hearings for High-Impact Rules.--Following notice of 
     a proposed rule making, receipt of comments on the proposed 
     rule, and any hearing held under subsection (d)(4), and 
     before adoption of any high-impact rule, the agency shall 
     hold a hearing in accordance with sections 556 and 557, 
     unless such hearing is waived by all participants in the rule 
     making other than the agency. The agency shall provide a 
     reasonable opportunity for cross-examination at such hearing. 
     The hearing shall be limited to the following issues of fact, 
     except that participants at the hearing other than the agency 
     may waive determination of any such issue:
       ``(1) Whether the agency's asserted factual predicate for 
     the rule is supported by the evidence.
       ``(2) Whether there is an alternative to the proposed rule 
     that would achieve the relevant statutory objectives at a 
     lower cost (including all costs to be considered under 
     subsection (b)(6)) than the proposed rule.
       ``(3) If there is more than one alternative to the proposed 
     rule that would achieve the relevant statutory objectives at 
     a lower cost than the proposed rule, which alternative would 
     achieve the relevant statutory objectives at the lowest cost.
       ``(4) Whether, if the agency proposes to adopt a rule that 
     is more costly than the least costly alternative that would 
     achieve the relevant statutory objectives (including all 
     costs to be considered under subsection (b)(6)), the 
     additional benefits of the more costly rule exceed the 
     additional costs of the more costly rule.
       ``(5) Whether the evidence and other information upon which 
     the agency bases the proposed rule meets the requirements of 
     the Information Quality Act.
       ``(6) Upon petition by an interested person who has 
     participated in the rule making, other issues relevant to the 
     rule making, unless the agency determines that consideration 
     of the issues at the hearing would not advance consideration 
     of the rule or would, in light of the nature of the need for 
     agency action, unreasonably delay completion of the rule 
     making. An agency shall grant or deny a petition under this 
     paragraph within 30 days of its receipt of the petition.

     No later than 45 days before any hearing held under this 
     subsection or sections 556 and 557, the agency shall publish 
     in the Federal Register a notice specifying the proposed rule 
     to be considered at such hearing, the issues to be considered 
     at the hearing, and the time and place for such hearing, 
     except that such notice may be issued not later than 15 days 
     before a hearing held under subsection (d)(4)(B).
       ``(f) Final Rules.--(1) The agency shall adopt a rule only 
     following consultation with the Administrator of the Office 
     of Information and Regulatory Affairs to facilitate 
     compliance with applicable rule making requirements.
       ``(2) The agency shall adopt a rule only on the basis of 
     the best reasonably obtainable scientific, technical, 
     economic, and other evidence and information concerning the 
     need for, consequences of, and alternatives to the rule.
       ``(3)(A) Except as provided in subparagraph (B), the agency 
     shall adopt the least costly rule considered during the rule 
     making (including all costs to be considered under subsection 
     (b)(6)) that meets relevant statutory objectives.
       ``(B) The agency may adopt a rule that is more costly than 
     the least costly alternative that would achieve the relevant 
     statutory objectives only if the additional benefits of the 
     more costly rule justify its additional costs and only if the 
     agency explains its reason for doing so based on interests of 
     public health, safety or welfare that are clearly within the 
     scope of the statutory provision authorizing the rule.
       ``(4) When it adopts a final rule, the agency shall publish 
     a notice of final rule making. The notice shall include--
       ``(A) a concise, general statement of the rule's basis and 
     purpose;
       ``(B) the agency's reasoned final determination of need for 
     a rule to address the problem the agency seeks to address 
     with the rule, including a statement of whether a rule is 
     required by statute and a summary of any final risk 
     assessment or regulatory impact analysis prepared by the 
     agency;
       ``(C) the agency's reasoned final determination that the 
     benefits of the rule meet the relevant statutory objectives 
     and justify the rule's costs (including all costs to be 
     considered under subsection (b)(6));
       ``(D) the agency's reasoned final determination not to 
     adopt any of the alternatives to the proposed rule considered 
     by the agency during the rule making, including--
       ``(i) the agency's reasoned final determination that no 
     alternative considered achieved the relevant statutory 
     objectives with lower costs (including all costs to be 
     considered under subsection (b)(6)) than the rule; or
       ``(ii) the agency's reasoned determination that its 
     adoption of a more costly rule complies with subsection 
     (f)(3)(B);
       ``(E) the agency's reasoned final determination--
       ``(i) that existing rules have not created or contributed 
     to the problem the agency seeks to address with the rule; or
       ``(ii) that existing rules have created or contributed to 
     the problem the agency seeks to address with the rule, and, 
     if so--
       ``(I) why amendment or rescission of such existing rules is 
     not alone sufficient to respond to the problem; and
       ``(II) whether and how the agency intends to amend or 
     rescind the existing rule separate from adoption of the rule;
       ``(F) the agency's reasoned final determination that the 
     evidence and other information upon which the agency bases 
     the rule complies with the Information Quality Act; and
       ``(G)(i) for any major rule or high-impact rule, the 
     agency's plan for review of the rule no less than every ten 
     years to determine whether, based upon evidence, there 
     remains a need for the rule, whether the rule is in fact 
     achieving statutory objectives, whether the rule's benefits 
     continue to justify its costs, and whether the rule can be 
     modified or rescinded to reduce costs while continuing to 
     achieve statutory objectives; and
       ``(ii) review of a rule under a plan required by clause (i) 
     of this subparagraph shall take into account the factors and 
     criteria set forth in subsections (b) through (f) of section 
     553 of this title.

     All information considered by the agency in connection with 
     its adoption of the rule, and, at the discretion of the 
     President or the Administrator of the Office of Information 
     and Regulatory Affairs, information provided by that Office 
     in consultations with the agency, shall be placed in the 
     docket for the rule and made accessible to the public for the 
     public's use no later than when the rule is adopted.
       ``(g) Exceptions From Notice and Hearing Requirements.--(1) 
     Except when notice or hearing is required by statute, the 
     following do not apply to interpretive rules, general 
     statements of policy, or rules of agency organization, 
     procedure, or practice:
       ``(A) Subsections (c) through (e).
       ``(B) Paragraphs (1) through (3) of subsection (f).
       ``(C) Subparagraphs (B) through (H) of subsection (f)(4).
       ``(2)(A) When the agency for good cause, based upon 
     evidence, finds (and incorporates the finding and a brief 
     statement of reasons therefor in the rules issued) that 
     compliance with subsection (c), (d), or (e) or requirements 
     to render final determinations under subsection (f) of this 
     section before the issuance of an interim rule is 
     impracticable or contrary to the public interest, including 
     interests of national security, such subsections or 
     requirements to render final determinations shall not apply 
     to the agency's adoption of an interim rule.
       ``(B) If, following compliance with subparagraph (A) of 
     this paragraph, the agency adopts an interim rule, it shall 
     commence proceedings that comply fully with subsections (d) 
     through (f) of this section immediately upon publication of 
     the interim rule, shall treat the

[[Page H1983]]

     publication of the interim rule as publication of a notice of 
     proposed rule making and shall not be required to issue 
     supplemental notice other than to complete full compliance 
     with subsection (d). No less than 270 days from publication 
     of the interim rule (or 18 months in the case of a major rule 
     or high-impact rule), the agency shall complete rule making 
     under subsections (d) through (f) of this subsection and take 
     final action to adopt a final rule or rescind the interim 
     rule. If the agency fails to take timely final action, the 
     interim rule will cease to have the effect of law.
       ``(C) Other than in cases involving interests of national 
     security, upon the agency's publication of an interim rule 
     without compliance with subsections (c), (d), or (e) or 
     requirements to render final determinations under subsection 
     (f) of this section, an interested party may seek immediate 
     judicial review under chapter 7 of this title of the agency's 
     determination to adopt such interim rule. The record on such 
     review shall include all documents and information considered 
     by the agency and any additional information presented by a 
     party that the court determines necessary to consider to 
     assure justice.
       ``(3) When the agency for good cause finds (and 
     incorporates the finding and a brief statement of reasons 
     therefor in the rules issued) that notice and public 
     procedure thereon are unnecessary, including because agency 
     rule making is undertaken only to correct a de minimis 
     technical or clerical error in a previously issued rule or 
     for other noncontroversial purposes, the agency may publish a 
     rule without compliance with subsections (c), (d), (e), or 
     (f)(1)-(3) and (f)(4)(B)-(F). If the agency receives 
     significant adverse comment within 60 days after publication 
     of the rule, it shall treat the notice of the rule as a 
     notice of proposed rule making and complete rule making in 
     compliance with subsections (d) and (f).
       ``(h) Additional Requirements for Hearings.--When a hearing 
     is required under subsection (e) or is otherwise required by 
     statute or at the agency's discretion before adoption of a 
     rule, the agency shall comply with the requirements of 
     sections 556 and 557 in addition to the requirements of 
     subsection (f) in adopting the rule and in providing notice 
     of the rule's adoption.
       ``(i) Date of Publication of Rule.--The required 
     publication or service of a substantive final or interim rule 
     shall be made not less than 30 days before the effective date 
     of the rule, except--
       ``(1) a substantive rule which grants or recognizes an 
     exemption or relieves a restriction;
       ``(2) interpretive rules and statements of policy; or
       ``(3) as otherwise provided by the agency for good cause 
     found and published with the rule.
       ``(j) Right To Petition.--Each agency shall give an 
     interested person the right to petition for the issuance, 
     amendment, or repeal of a rule.
       ``(k) Rule Making Guidelines.--(1)(A) The Administrator of 
     the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs shall 
     establish guidelines for the assessment, including 
     quantitative and qualitative assessment, of the costs and 
     benefits of proposed and final rules and other economic 
     issues or issues related to risk that are relevant to rule 
     making under this title. The rigor of cost-benefit analysis 
     required by such guidelines shall be commensurate, in the 
     Administrator's determination, with the economic impact of 
     the rule.
       ``(B) To ensure that agencies use the best available 
     techniques to quantify and evaluate anticipated present and 
     future benefits, costs, other economic issues, and risks as 
     accurately as possible, the Administrator of the Office of 
     Information and Regulatory Affairs shall regularly update 
     guidelines established under paragraph (1)(A) of this 
     subsection.
       ``(2) The Administrator of the Office of Information and 
     Regulatory Affairs shall also issue guidelines to promote 
     coordination, simplification and harmonization of agency 
     rules during the rule making process and otherwise. Such 
     guidelines shall assure that each agency avoids regulations 
     that are inconsistent or incompatible with, or duplicative 
     of, its other regulations and those of other Federal agencies 
     and drafts its regulations to be simple and easy to 
     understand, with the goal of minimizing the potential for 
     uncertainty and litigation arising from such uncertainty.
       ``(3) To ensure consistency in Federal rule making, the 
     Administrator of the Office of Information and Regulatory 
     Affairs shall--
       ``(A) issue guidelines and otherwise take action to ensure 
     that rule makings conducted in whole or in part under 
     procedures specified in provisions of law other than those of 
     subchapter II of this title conform to the fullest extent 
     allowed by law with the procedures set forth in section 553 
     of this title; and
       ``(B) issue guidelines for the conduct of hearings under 
     subsections 553(d)(4) and 553(e) of this section, including 
     to assure a reasonable opportunity for cross-examination. 
     Each agency shall adopt regulations for the conduct of 
     hearings consistent with the guidelines issued under this 
     subparagraph.
       ``(4) The Administrator of the Office of Information and 
     Regulatory Affairs shall issue guidelines pursuant to the 
     Information Quality Act to apply in rule making proceedings 
     under sections 553, 556, and 557 of this title. In all cases, 
     such guidelines, and the Administrator's specific 
     determinations regarding agency compliance with such 
     guidelines, shall be entitled to judicial deference.
       ``(l) Inclusion in the Record of Certain Documents and 
     Information.--The agency shall include in the record for a 
     rule making, and shall make available by electronic means and 
     otherwise, all documents and information prepared or 
     considered by the agency during the proceeding, including, at 
     the discretion of the President or the Administrator of the 
     Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, documents and 
     information communicated by that Office during consultation 
     with the Agency.
       ``(m) Monetary Policy Exemption.--Nothing in subsection 
     (b)(6), subparagraphs (F) and (G) of subsection (d)(1), 
     subsection (e), subsection (f)(3), and subparagraphs (C) and 
     (D) of subsection (f)(5) shall apply to rule makings that 
     concern monetary policy proposed or implemented by the Board 
     of Governors of the Federal Reserve System or the Federal 
     Open Market Committee.''.

     SEC. 204. AGENCY GUIDANCE; PROCEDURES TO ISSUE MAJOR 
                   GUIDANCE; PRESIDENTIAL AUTHORITY TO ISSUE 
                   GUIDELINES FOR ISSUANCE OF GUIDANCE.

       (a) In General.--Chapter 5 of title 5, United States Code, 
     is amended by inserting after section 553 the following new 
     section:

     ``Sec. 553a. Agency guidance; procedures to issue major 
       guidance; authority to issue guidelines for issuance of 
       guidance

       ``(a) Before issuing any major guidance, or guidance that 
     involves a novel legal or policy issue arising out of 
     statutory mandates, an agency shall--
       ``(1) make and document a reasoned determination that--
       ``(A) assures that such guidance is understandable and 
     complies with relevant statutory objectives and regulatory 
     provisions (including any statutory deadlines for agency 
     action);
       ``(B) summarizes the evidence and data on which the agency 
     will base the guidance;
       ``(C) identifies the costs and benefits (including all 
     costs to be considered during a rule making under section 
     553(b) of this title) of conduct conforming to such guidance 
     and assures that such benefits justify such costs; and
       ``(D) describes alternatives to such guidance and their 
     costs and benefits (including all costs to be considered 
     during a rule making under section 553(b) of this title) and 
     explains why the agency rejected those alternatives; and
       ``(2) confer with the Administrator of the Office of 
     Information and Regulatory Affairs on the issuance of such 
     guidance to assure that the guidance is reasonable, 
     understandable, consistent with relevant statutory and 
     regulatory provisions and requirements or practices of other 
     agencies, does not produce costs that are unjustified by the 
     guidance's benefits, and is otherwise appropriate.
     Upon issuing major guidance, or guidance that involves a 
     novel legal or policy issue arising out of statutory 
     mandates, the agency shall publish the documentation required 
     by subparagraph (1) by electronic means and otherwise.
       ``(b) Agency guidance--
       ``(1) is not legally binding and may not be relied upon by 
     an agency as legal grounds for agency action;
       ``(2) shall state in a plain, prominent and permanent 
     manner that it is not legally binding; and
       ``(3) shall, at the time it is issued or upon request, be 
     made available by the issuing agency to interested persons 
     and the public by electronic means and otherwise.
     Agencies shall avoid the issuance of guidance that is 
     inconsistent or incompatible with, or duplicative of, the 
     agency's governing statutes or regulations, with the goal of 
     minimizing the potential for uncertainty and litigation 
     arising from such uncertainty.
       ``(c) The Administrator of the Office of Information and 
     Regulatory Affairs shall have authority to issue guidelines 
     for use by the agencies in the issuance of major guidance and 
     other guidance. Such guidelines shall assure that each agency 
     avoids issuing guidance documents that are inconsistent or 
     incompatible with, or duplicative of, the law, its other 
     regulations, or the regulations of other Federal agencies and 
     drafts its guidance documents to be simple and easy to 
     understand, with the goal of minimizing the potential for 
     uncertainty and litigation arising from such uncertainty.''.
       (b) Clerical Amendment.--The table of sections for chapter 
     5 of title 5, United States Code, is amended by inserting 
     after the item relating to section 553 the following new 
     item:

``553a. Agency guidance; procedures to issue major guidance; authority 
              to issue guidelines for issuance of guidance.''.

     SEC. 205. HEARINGS; PRESIDING EMPLOYEES; POWERS AND DUTIES; 
                   BURDEN OF PROOF; EVIDENCE; RECORD AS BASIS OF 
                   DECISION.

       Section 556 of title 5, United States Code, is amended by 
     striking subsection (e) and inserting the following:
       ``(e)(1) The transcript of testimony and exhibits, together 
     with all papers and requests filed in the proceeding, 
     constitutes the exclusive record for decision in accordance 
     with section 557 and shall be made available to the parties 
     and the public by electronic means and, upon payment of 
     lawfully prescribed costs, otherwise. When an agency decision 
     rests on official notice of a material

[[Page H1984]]

     fact not appearing in the evidence in the record, a party is 
     entitled, on timely request, to an opportunity to show the 
     contrary.
       ``(2) Notwithstanding paragraph (1) of this subsection, in 
     a proceeding held under this section pursuant to section 
     553(d)(4) or 553(e), the record for decision shall also 
     include any information that is part of the record of 
     proceedings under section 553.
       ``(f) When an agency conducts rule making under this 
     section and section 557 directly after concluding proceedings 
     upon an advance notice of proposed rule making under section 
     553(c), the matters to be considered and determinations to be 
     made shall include, among other relevant matters and 
     determinations, the matters and determinations described in 
     subsections (b) and (f) of section 553.
       ``(g) Upon receipt of a petition for a hearing under this 
     section, the agency shall grant the petition in the case of 
     any major rule, unless the agency reasonably determines that 
     a hearing would not advance consideration of the rule or 
     would, in light of the need for agency action, unreasonably 
     delay completion of the rule making. The agency shall publish 
     its decision to grant or deny the petition when it renders 
     the decision, including an explanation of the grounds for 
     decision. The information contained in the petition shall in 
     all cases be included in the administrative record. This 
     subsection shall not apply to rule makings that concern 
     monetary policy proposed or implemented by the Board of 
     Governors of the Federal Reserve System or the Federal Open 
     Market Committee.''.

     SEC. 206. ACTIONS REVIEWABLE.

       Section 704 of title 5, United States Code, is amended--
       (1) by striking ``Agency action made'' and inserting ``(a) 
     Agency action made''; and
       (2) by adding at the end the following: ``Denial by an 
     agency of a correction request or, where administrative 
     appeal is provided for, denial of an appeal, under an 
     administrative mechanism described in subsection (b)(2)(B) of 
     the Information Quality Act, or the failure of an agency 
     within 90 days to grant or deny such request or appeal, shall 
     be final action for purposes of this section.
       ``(b) Other than in cases involving interests of national 
     security, notwithstanding subsection (a) of this section, 
     upon the agency's publication of an interim rule without 
     compliance with section 553(c), (d), or (e) or requirements 
     to render final determinations under subsection (f) of 
     section 553, an interested party may seek immediate judicial 
     review under this chapter of the agency's determination to 
     adopt such rule on an interim basis. Review shall be limited 
     to whether the agency abused its discretion to adopt the 
     interim rule without compliance with section 553(c), (d), or 
     (e) or without rendering final determinations under 
     subsection (f) of section 553.''.

     SEC. 207. SCOPE OF REVIEW.

       Section 706 of title 5, United States Code is amended--
       (1) by striking ``To the extent necessary'' and inserting 
     ``(a) To the extent necessary'';
       (2) in paragraph (2)(A) of subsection (a) (as designated by 
     paragraph (1) of this section), by inserting after ``in 
     accordance with law'' the following: ``(including the 
     Information Quality Act)''; and
       (3) by adding at the end the following:
       ``(b) The court shall not defer to the agency's--
       ``(1) interpretation of an agency rule if the agency did 
     not comply with the procedures of section 553 or sections 
     556-557 of chapter 5 of this title to issue the 
     interpretation;
       ``(2) determination of the costs and benefits or other 
     economic or risk assessment of the action, if the agency 
     failed to conform to guidelines on such determinations and 
     assessments established by the Administrator of the Office of 
     Information and Regulatory Affairs under section 553(k);
       ``(3) determinations made in the adoption of an interim 
     rule; or
       ``(4) guidance.
       ``(c) The court shall review agency denials of petitions 
     under section 553(e)(6) or any other petition for a hearing 
     under sections 556 and 557 for abuse of agency discretion.''.

     SEC. 208. ADDED DEFINITION.

       Section 701(b) of title 5, United States Code, is amended--
       (1) in paragraph (1), by striking ``and'' at the end;
       (2) in paragraph (2), by striking the period at the end, 
     and inserting ``; and''; and
       (3) by adding at the end the following:
       ``(3) `substantial evidence' means such relevant evidence 
     as a reasonable mind might accept as adequate to support a 
     conclusion in light of the record considered as a whole, 
     taking into account whatever in the record fairly detracts 
     from the weight of the evidence relied upon by the agency to 
     support its decision.''.

     SEC. 209. EFFECTIVE DATE.

       The amendments made by this title to--
       (1) sections 553, 556, and 704 of title 5, United States 
     Code;
       (2) subsection (b) of section 701 of such title;
       (3) paragraphs (2) and (3) of section 706(b) of such title; 
     and
       (4) subsection (c) of section 706 of such title,

     shall not apply to any rule makings pending or completed on 
     the date of enactment of this title.

           TITLE III--REGULATORY FLEXIBILITY IMPROVEMENTS ACT

     SEC. 301. SHORT TITLE; TABLE OF CONTENTS.

       This title may be cited as the ``Regulatory Flexibility 
     Improvements Act of 2014''.

     SEC. 302. CLARIFICATION AND EXPANSION OF RULES COVERED BY THE 
                   REGULATORY FLEXIBILITY ACT.

       (a) In General.--Paragraph (2) of section 601 of title 5, 
     United States Code, is amended to read as follows:
       ``(2) Rule.--The term `rule' has the meaning given such 
     term in section 551(4) of this title, except that such term 
     does not include a rule pertaining to the protection of the 
     rights of and benefits for veterans or a rule of particular 
     (and not general) applicability relating to rates, wages, 
     corporate or financial structures or reorganizations thereof, 
     prices, facilities, appliances, services, or allowances 
     therefor or to valuations, costs or accounting, or practices 
     relating to such rates, wages, structures, prices, 
     appliances, services, or allowances.''.
       (b) Inclusion of Rules With Indirect Effects.--Section 601 
     of title 5, United States Code, is amended by adding at the 
     end the following new paragraph:
       ``(9) Economic impact.--The term `economic impact' means, 
     with respect to a proposed or final rule--
       ``(A) any direct economic effect on small entities of such 
     rule; and
       ``(B) any indirect economic effect (including compliance 
     costs and effects on revenue) on small entities which is 
     reasonably foreseeable and results from such rule (without 
     regard to whether small entities will be directly regulated 
     by the rule).''.
       (c) Inclusion of Rules With Beneficial Effects.--
       (1) Initial regulatory flexibility analysis.--Subsection 
     (c) of section 603 of title 5, United States Code, is amended 
     by striking the first sentence and inserting ``Each initial 
     regulatory flexibility analysis shall also contain a detailed 
     description of alternatives to the proposed rule which 
     minimize any adverse significant economic impact or maximize 
     any beneficial significant economic impact on small 
     entities.''.
       (2) Final regulatory flexibility analysis.--The first 
     paragraph (6) of section 604(a) of title 5, United States 
     Code, is amended by striking ``minimize the significant 
     economic impact'' and inserting ``minimize the adverse 
     significant economic impact or maximize the beneficial 
     significant economic impact''.
       (d) Inclusion of Rules Affecting Tribal Organizations.--
     Paragraph (5) of section 601 of title 5, United States Code, 
     is amended by inserting ``and tribal organizations (as 
     defined in section 4(l) of the Indian Self-Determination and 
     Education Assistance Act (25 U.S.C. 450b(l))),'' after 
     ``special districts,''.
       (e) Inclusion of Land Management Plans and Formal 
     Rulemaking.--
       (1) Initial regulatory flexibility analysis.--Subsection 
     (a) of section 603 of title 5, United States Code, is amended 
     in the first sentence--
       (A) by striking ``or'' after ``proposed rule,''; and
       (B) by inserting ``or publishes a revision or amendment to 
     a land management plan,'' after ``United States,''.
       (2) Final regulatory flexibility analysis.--Subsection (a) 
     of section 604 of title 5, United States Code, is amended in 
     the first sentence--
       (A) by striking ``or'' after ``proposed rulemaking,''; and
       (B) by inserting ``or adopts a revision or amendment to a 
     land management plan,'' after ``section 603(a),''.
       (3) Land management plan defined.--Section 601 of title 5, 
     United States Code, is amended by adding at the end the 
     following new paragraph:
       ``(10) Land management plan.--
       ``(A) In general.--The term `land management plan' means--
       ``(i) any plan developed by the Secretary of Agriculture 
     under section 6 of the Forest and Rangeland Renewable 
     Resources Planning Act of 1974 (16 U.S.C. 1604); and
       ``(ii) any plan developed by the Secretary of the Interior 
     under section 202 of the Federal Land Policy and Management 
     Act of 1976 (43 U.S.C. 1712).
       ``(B) Revision.--The term `revision' means any change to a 
     land management plan which--
       ``(i) in the case of a plan described in subparagraph 
     (A)(i), is made under section 6(f)(5) of the Forest and 
     Rangeland Renewable Resources Planning Act of 1974 (16 U.S.C. 
     1604(f)(5)); or
       ``(ii) in the case of a plan described in subparagraph 
     (A)(ii), is made under section 1610.5-6 of title 43, Code of 
     Federal Regulations (or any successor regulation).
       ``(C) Amendment.--The term `amendment' means any change to 
     a land management plan which--
       ``(i) in the case of a plan described in subparagraph 
     (A)(i), is made under section 6(f)(4) of the Forest and 
     Rangeland Renewable Resources Planning Act of 1974 (16 U.S.C. 
     1604(f)(4)) and with respect to which the Secretary of 
     Agriculture prepares a statement described in section 
     102(2)(C) of the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 
     (42 U.S.C. 4332(2)(C)); or
       ``(ii) in the case of a plan described in subparagraph 
     (A)(ii), is made under section 1610.5-5 of title 43, Code of 
     Federal Regulations (or any successor regulation) and with 
     respect to which the Secretary of the Interior prepares a 
     statement described in section 102(2)(C) of the National 
     Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (42 U.S.C. 4332(2)(C)).''.

[[Page H1985]]

       (f) Inclusion of Certain Interpretive Rules Involving the 
     Internal Revenue Laws.--
       (1) In general.--Subsection (a) of section 603 of title 5, 
     United States Code, is amended by striking the period at the 
     end and inserting ``or a recordkeeping requirement, and 
     without regard to whether such requirement is imposed by 
     statute or regulation.''.
       (2) Collection of information.--Paragraph (7) of section 
     601 of title 5, United States Code, is amended to read as 
     follows:
       ``(7) Collection of information.--The term `collection of 
     information' has the meaning given such term in section 
     3502(3) of title 44.''.
       (3) Recordkeeping requirement.--Paragraph (8) of section 
     601 of title 5, United States Code, is amended to read as 
     follows:
       ``(8) Recordkeeping requirement.--The term `recordkeeping 
     requirement' has the meaning given such term in section 
     3502(13) of title 44.''.
       (g) Definition of Small Organization.--Paragraph (4) of 
     section 601 of title 5, United States Code, is amended to 
     read as follows:
       ``(4) Small organization.--
       ``(A) In general.--The term `small organization' means any 
     not-for-profit enterprise which, as of the issuance of the 
     notice of proposed rulemaking--
       ``(i) in the case of an enterprise which is described by a 
     classification code of the North American Industrial 
     Classification System, does not exceed the size standard 
     established by the Administrator of the Small Business 
     Administration pursuant to section 3 of the Small Business 
     Act (15 U.S.C. 632) for small business concerns described by 
     such classification code; and
       ``(ii) in the case of any other enterprise, has a net worth 
     that does not exceed $7,000,000 and has not more than 500 
     employees.
       ``(B) Local labor organizations.--In the case of any local 
     labor organization, subparagraph (A) shall be applied without 
     regard to any national or international organization of which 
     such local labor organization is a part.
       ``(C) Agency definitions.--Subparagraphs (A) and (B) shall 
     not apply to the extent that an agency, after consultation 
     with the Office of Advocacy of the Small Business 
     Administration and after opportunity for public comment, 
     establishes one or more definitions for such term which are 
     appropriate to the activities of the agency and publishes 
     such definitions in the Federal Register.''.

     SEC. 303. EXPANSION OF REPORT OF REGULATORY AGENDA.

       Section 602 of title 5, United States Code, is amended--
       (1) in subsection (a)--
       (A) in paragraph (2), by striking ``, and'' at the end and 
     inserting ``;'';
       (B) by redesignating paragraph (3) as paragraph (4); and
       (C) by inserting after paragraph (2) the following:
       ``(3) a brief description of the sector of the North 
     American Industrial Classification System that is primarily 
     affected by any rule which the agency expects to propose or 
     promulgate which is likely to have a significant economic 
     impact on a substantial number of small entities; and''; and
       (2) in subsection (c), to read as follows:
       ``(c) Each agency shall prominently display a plain 
     language summary of the information contained in the 
     regulatory flexibility agenda published under subsection (a) 
     on its website within 3 days of its publication in the 
     Federal Register. The Office of Advocacy of the Small 
     Business Administration shall compile and prominently display 
     a plain language summary of the regulatory agendas referenced 
     in subsection (a) for each agency on its website within 3 
     days of their publication in the Federal Register.''.

     SEC. 304. REQUIREMENTS PROVIDING FOR MORE DETAILED ANALYSES.

       (a) Initial Regulatory Flexibility Analysis.--Subsection 
     (b) of section 603 of title 5, United States Code, is amended 
     to read as follows:
       ``(b) Each initial regulatory flexibility analysis required 
     under this section shall contain a detailed statement--
       ``(1) describing the reasons why action by the agency is 
     being considered;
       ``(2) describing the objectives of, and legal basis for, 
     the proposed rule;
       ``(3) estimating the number and type of small entities to 
     which the proposed rule will apply;
       ``(4) describing the projected reporting, recordkeeping, 
     and other compliance requirements of the proposed rule, 
     including an estimate of the classes of small entities which 
     will be subject to the requirement and the type of 
     professional skills necessary for preparation of the report 
     and record;
       ``(5) describing all relevant Federal rules which may 
     duplicate, overlap, or conflict with the proposed rule, or 
     the reasons why such a description could not be provided;
       ``(6) estimating the additional cumulative economic impact 
     of the proposed rule on small entities beyond that already 
     imposed on the class of small entities by the agency or why 
     such an estimate is not available; and
       ``(7) describing any disproportionate economic impact on 
     small entities or a specific class of small entities.''.
       (b) Final Regulatory Flexibility Analysis.--
       (1) In general.--Section 604(a) of title 5, United States 
     Code, is amended--
       (A) in paragraph (4), by striking ``an explanation'' and 
     inserting ``a detailed explanation'';
       (B) in each of paragraphs (4), (5), and the first paragraph 
     (6), by inserting ``detailed'' before ``description''; and
       (C) by adding at the end the following:
       ``(7) describing any disproportionate economic impact on 
     small entities or a specific class of small entities.''.
       (2) Inclusion of response to comments on certification of 
     proposed rule.--Paragraph (2) of section 604(a) of title 5, 
     United States Code, is amended by inserting ``(or 
     certification of the proposed rule under section 605(b))'' 
     after ``initial regulatory flexibility analysis''.
       (3) Publication of analysis on website.--Subsection (b) of 
     section 604 of title 5, United States Code, is amended to 
     read as follows:
       ``(b) The agency shall make copies of the final regulatory 
     flexibility analysis available to the public, including 
     placement of the entire analysis on the agency's website, and 
     shall publish in the Federal Register the final regulatory 
     flexibility analysis, or a summary thereof which includes the 
     telephone number, mailing address, and link to the website 
     where the complete analysis may be obtained.''.
       (c) Cross-References to Other Analyses.--Subsection (a) of 
     section 605 of title 5, United States Code, is amended to 
     read as follows:
       ``(a) A Federal agency shall be treated as satisfying any 
     requirement regarding the content of an agenda or regulatory 
     flexibility analysis under section 602, 603, or 604, if such 
     agency provides in such agenda or analysis a cross-reference 
     to the specific portion of another agenda or analysis which 
     is required by any other law and which satisfies such 
     requirement.''.
       (d) Certifications.--Subsection (b) of section 605 of title 
     5, United States Code, is amended--
       (1) by inserting ``detailed'' before ``statement'' the 
     first place it appears; and
       (2) by inserting ``and legal'' after ``factual''.
       (e) Quantification Requirements.--Section 607 of title 5, 
     United States Code, is amended to read as follows:

     ``Sec. 607. Quantification requirements

       ``In complying with sections 603 and 604, an agency shall 
     provide--
       ``(1) a quantifiable or numerical description of the 
     effects of the proposed or final rule and alternatives to the 
     proposed or final rule; or
       ``(2) a more general descriptive statement and a detailed 
     statement explaining why quantification is not practicable or 
     reliable.''.

     SEC. 305. REPEAL OF WAIVER AND DELAY AUTHORITY; ADDITIONAL 
                   POWERS OF THE CHIEF COUNSEL FOR ADVOCACY.

       (a) In General.--Section 608 is amended to read as follows:

     ``Sec. 608. Additional powers of Chief Counsel for Advocacy

       ``(a)(1) Not later than 270 days after the date of the 
     enactment of this section, the Chief Counsel for Advocacy of 
     the Small Business Administration shall, after opportunity 
     for notice and comment under section 553, issue rules 
     governing agency compliance with this chapter. The Chief 
     Counsel may modify or amend such rules after notice and 
     comment under section 553. This chapter (other than this 
     subsection) shall not apply with respect to the issuance, 
     modification, and amendment of rules under this paragraph.
       ``(2) An agency shall not issue rules which supplement the 
     rules issued under subsection (a) unless such agency has 
     first consulted with the Chief Counsel for Advocacy to ensure 
     that such supplemental rules comply with this chapter and the 
     rules issued under paragraph (1).
       ``(b) Notwithstanding any other law, the Chief Counsel for 
     Advocacy of the Small Business Administration may intervene 
     in any agency adjudication (unless such agency is authorized 
     to impose a fine or penalty under such adjudication), and may 
     inform the agency of the impact that any decision on the 
     record may have on small entities. The Chief Counsel shall 
     not initiate an appeal with respect to any adjudication in 
     which the Chief Counsel intervenes under this subsection.
       ``(c) The Chief Counsel for Advocacy may file comments in 
     response to any agency notice requesting comment, regardless 
     of whether the agency is required to file a general notice of 
     proposed rulemaking under section 553.''.
       (b) Conforming Amendments.--
       (1) Section 611(a)(1) of such title is amended by striking 
     ``608(b),''.
       (2) Section 611(a)(2) of such title is amended by striking 
     ``608(b),''.
       (3) Section 611(a)(3) of such title is amended--
       (A) by striking subparagraph (B); and
       (B) by striking ``(3)(A) A small entity'' and inserting the 
     following:
       ``(3) A small entity''.

     SEC. 306. PROCEDURES FOR GATHERING COMMENTS.

       Section 609 of title 5, United States Code, is amended by 
     striking subsection (b) and all that follows through the end 
     of the section and inserting the following:
       ``(b)(1) Prior to publication of any proposed rule 
     described in subsection (e), an agency making such rule shall 
     notify the Chief Counsel for Advocacy of the Small Business 
     Administration and provide the Chief Counsel with--
       ``(A) all materials prepared or utilized by the agency in 
     making the proposed rule, including the draft of the proposed 
     rule; and

[[Page H1986]]

       ``(B) information on the potential adverse and beneficial 
     economic impacts of the proposed rule on small entities and 
     the type of small entities that might be affected.
       ``(2) An agency shall not be required under paragraph (1) 
     to provide the exact language of any draft if the rule--
       ``(A) relates to the internal revenue laws of the United 
     States; or
       ``(B) is proposed by an independent regulatory agency (as 
     defined in section 3502(5) of title 44).
       ``(c) Not later than 15 days after the receipt of such 
     materials and information under subsection (b), the Chief 
     Counsel for Advocacy of the Small Business Administration 
     shall--
       ``(1) identify small entities or representatives of small 
     entities or a combination of both for the purpose of 
     obtaining advice, input, and recommendations from those 
     persons about the potential economic impacts of the proposed 
     rule and the compliance of the agency with section 603; and
       ``(2) convene a review panel consisting of an employee from 
     the Office of Advocacy of the Small Business Administration, 
     an employee from the agency making the rule, and in the case 
     of an agency other than an independent regulatory agency (as 
     defined in section 3502(5) of title 44), an employee from the 
     Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs of the Office of 
     Management and Budget to review the materials and information 
     provided to the Chief Counsel under subsection (b).
       ``(d)(1) Not later than 60 days after the review panel 
     described in subsection (c)(2) is convened, the Chief Counsel 
     for Advocacy of the Small Business Administration shall, 
     after consultation with the members of such panel, submit a 
     report to the agency and, in the case of an agency other than 
     an independent regulatory agency (as defined in section 
     3502(5) of title 44), the Office of Information and 
     Regulatory Affairs of the Office of Management and Budget.
       ``(2) Such report shall include an assessment of the 
     economic impact of the proposed rule on small entities, 
     including an assessment of the proposed rule's impact on the 
     cost that small entities pay for energy, an assessment of the 
     proposed rule's impact on start-up costs for small entities, 
     and a discussion of any alternatives that will minimize 
     adverse significant economic impacts or maximize beneficial 
     significant economic impacts on small entities.
       ``(3) Such report shall become part of the rulemaking 
     record. In the publication of the proposed rule, the agency 
     shall explain what actions, if any, the agency took in 
     response to such report.
       ``(e) A proposed rule is described by this subsection if 
     the Administrator of the Office of Information and Regulatory 
     Affairs of the Office of Management and Budget, the head of 
     the agency (or the delegatee of the head of the agency), or 
     an independent regulatory agency determines that the proposed 
     rule is likely to result in--
       ``(1) an annual effect on the economy of $100,000,000 or 
     more;
       ``(2) a major increase in costs or prices for consumers, 
     individual industries, Federal, State, or local governments, 
     tribal organizations, or geographic regions;
       ``(3) significant adverse effects on competition, 
     employment, investment, productivity, innovation, or on the 
     ability of United States-based enterprises to compete with 
     foreign-based enterprises in domestic and export markets; or
       ``(4) a significant economic impact on a substantial number 
     of small entities.
       ``(f) Upon application by the agency, the Chief Counsel for 
     Advocacy of the Small Business Administration may waive the 
     requirements of subsections (b) through (e) if the Chief 
     Counsel determines that compliance with the requirements of 
     such subsections are impracticable, unnecessary, or contrary 
     to the public interest.
       ``(g) A small entity or a representative of a small entity 
     may submit a request that the agency provide a copy of the 
     report prepared under subsection (d) and all materials and 
     information provided to the Chief Counsel for Advocacy of the 
     Small Business Administration under subsection (b). The 
     agency receiving such request shall provide the report, 
     materials and information to the requesting small entity or 
     representative of a small entity not later than 10 business 
     days after receiving such request, except that the agency 
     shall not disclose any information that is prohibited from 
     disclosure to the public pursuant to section 552(b) of this 
     title.''.

     SEC. 307. PERIODIC REVIEW OF RULES.

       Section 610 of title 5, United States Code, is amended to 
     read as follows:

     ``Sec. 610. Periodic review of rules

       ``(a) Not later than 180 days after the enactment of this 
     section, each agency shall publish in the Federal Register 
     and place on its website a plan for the periodic review of 
     rules issued by the agency which the head of the agency 
     determines have a significant economic impact on a 
     substantial number of small entities. Such determination 
     shall be made without regard to whether the agency performed 
     an analysis under section 604. The purpose of the review 
     shall be to determine whether such rules should be continued 
     without change, or should be amended or rescinded, consistent 
     with the stated objectives of applicable statutes, to 
     minimize any adverse significant economic impacts or maximize 
     any beneficial significant economic impacts on a substantial 
     number of small entities. Such plan may be amended by the 
     agency at any time by publishing the revision in the Federal 
     Register and subsequently placing the amended plan on the 
     agency's website.
       ``(b) The plan shall provide for the review of all such 
     agency rules existing on the date of the enactment of this 
     section within 10 years of the date of publication of the 
     plan in the Federal Register and for review of rules adopted 
     after the date of enactment of this section within 10 years 
     after the publication of the final rule in the Federal 
     Register. If the head of the agency determines that 
     completion of the review of existing rules is not feasible by 
     the established date, the head of the agency shall so certify 
     in a statement published in the Federal Register and may 
     extend the review for not longer than 2 years after 
     publication of notice of extension in the Federal Register. 
     Such certification and notice shall be sent to the Chief 
     Counsel for Advocacy of the Small Business Administration and 
     the Congress.
       ``(c) The plan shall include a section that details how an 
     agency will conduct outreach to and meaningfully include 
     small businesses (including small business concerns owned and 
     controlled by women, small business concerns owned and 
     controlled by veterans, and small business concerns owned and 
     controlled by socially and economically disadvantaged 
     individuals (as such terms are defined in the Small Business 
     Act)) for the purposes of carrying out this section. The 
     agency shall include in this section a plan for how the 
     agency will contact small businesses and gather their input 
     on existing agency rules.
       ``(d) Each agency shall annually submit a report regarding 
     the results of its review pursuant to such plan to the 
     Congress, the Chief Counsel for Advocacy of the Small 
     Business Administration, and, in the case of agencies other 
     than independent regulatory agencies (as defined in section 
     3502(5) of title 44) to the Administrator of the Office of 
     Information and Regulatory Affairs of the Office of 
     Management and Budget. Such report shall include the 
     identification of any rule with respect to which the head of 
     the agency made a determination described in paragraph (5) or 
     (6) of subsection (e) and a detailed explanation of the 
     reasons for such determination.
       ``(e) In reviewing a rule pursuant to subsections (a) 
     through (d), the agency shall amend or rescind the rule to 
     minimize any adverse significant economic impact on a 
     substantial number of small entities or disproportionate 
     economic impact on a specific class of small entities, or 
     maximize any beneficial significant economic impact of the 
     rule on a substantial number of small entities to the 
     greatest extent possible, consistent with the stated 
     objectives of applicable statutes. In amending or rescinding 
     the rule, the agency shall consider the following factors:
       ``(1) The continued need for the rule.
       ``(2) The nature of complaints received by the agency from 
     small entities concerning the rule.
       ``(3) Comments by the Regulatory Enforcement Ombudsman and 
     the Chief Counsel for Advocacy of the Small Business 
     Administration.
       ``(4) The complexity of the rule.
       ``(5) The extent to which the rule overlaps, duplicates, or 
     conflicts with other Federal rules and, unless the head of 
     the agency determines it to be infeasible, State, 
     territorial, and local rules.
       ``(6) The contribution of the rule to the cumulative 
     economic impact of all Federal rules on the class of small 
     entities affected by the rule, unless the head of the agency 
     determines that such calculations cannot be made and reports 
     that determination in the annual report required under 
     subsection (d).
       ``(7) The length of time since the rule has been evaluated 
     or the degree to which technology, economic conditions, or 
     other factors have changed in the area affected by the rule.
       ``(f) The agency shall publish in the Federal Register and 
     on its website a list of rules to be reviewed pursuant to 
     such plan. The agency shall include in the publication a 
     solicitation of public comments on any further inclusions or 
     exclusions of rules from the list, and shall respond to such 
     comments. Such publication shall include a brief description 
     of the rule, the reason why the agency determined that it has 
     a significant economic impact on a substantial number of 
     small entities (without regard to whether it had prepared a 
     final regulatory flexibility analysis for the rule), and 
     request comments from the public, the Chief Counsel for 
     Advocacy of the Small Business Administration, and the 
     Regulatory Enforcement Ombudsman concerning the enforcement 
     of the rule.''.

     SEC. 308. JUDICIAL REVIEW OF COMPLIANCE WITH THE REQUIREMENTS 
                   OF THE REGULATORY FLEXIBILITY ACT AVAILABLE 
                   AFTER PUBLICATION OF THE FINAL RULE.

       (a) In General.--Paragraph (1) of section 611(a) of title 
     5, United States Code, is amended by striking ``final agency 
     action'' and inserting ``such rule''.
       (b) Jurisdiction.--Paragraph (2) of such section is amended 
     by inserting ``(or which would have such jurisdiction if 
     publication of the final rule constituted final agency 
     action)'' after ``provision of law,''.
       (c) Time for Bringing Action.--Paragraph (3) of such 
     section is amended--
       (1) by striking ``final agency action'' and inserting 
     ``publication of the final rule''; and
       (2) by inserting ``, in the case of a rule for which the 
     date of final agency action is the

[[Page H1987]]

     same date as the publication of the final rule,'' after 
     ``except that''.
       (d) Intervention by Chief Counsel for Advocacy.--Subsection 
     (b) of section 612 of title 5, United States Code, is amended 
     by inserting before the first period ``or agency compliance 
     with section 601, 603, 604, 605(b), 609, or 610''.

     SEC. 309. JURISDICTION OF COURT OF APPEALS OVER RULES 
                   IMPLEMENTING THE REGULATORY FLEXIBILITY ACT.

       (a) In General.--Section 2342 of title 28, United States 
     Code, is amended--
       (1) in paragraph (6), by striking ``and'' at the end;
       (2) in paragraph (7), by striking the period at the end and 
     inserting ``; and''; and
       (3) by inserting after paragraph (7) the following new 
     paragraph:
       ``(8) all final rules under section 608(a) of title 5.''.
       (b) Conforming Amendments.--Paragraph (3) of section 2341 
     of title 28, United States Code, is amended--
       (1) in subparagraph (D), by striking ``and'' at the end;
       (2) in subparagraph (E), by striking the period at the end 
     and inserting ``; and''; and
       (3) by adding at the end the following new subparagraph:
       ``(F) the Office of Advocacy of the Small Business 
     Administration, when the final rule is under section 608(a) 
     of title 5.''.
       (c) Authorization To Intervene and Comment on Agency 
     Compliance With Administrative Procedure.--Subsection (b) of 
     section 612 of title 5, United States Code, is amended by 
     inserting ``chapter 5, and chapter 7,'' after ``this 
     chapter,''.

     SEC. 310. ESTABLISHMENT AND APPROVAL OF SMALL BUSINESS 
                   CONCERN SIZE STANDARDS BY CHIEF COUNSEL FOR 
                   ADVOCACY.

       (a) In General.--Subparagraph (A) of section 3(a)(2) of the 
     Small Business Act (15 U.S.C. 632(a)(2)(A)) is amended to 
     read as follows:
       ``(A) In general.--In addition to the criteria specified in 
     paragraph (1)--
       ``(i) the Administrator may specify detailed definitions or 
     standards by which a business concern may be determined to be 
     a small business concern for purposes of this Act or the 
     Small Business Investment Act of 1958; and
       ``(ii) the Chief Counsel for Advocacy may specify such 
     definitions or standards for purposes of any other Act.''.
       (b) Approval by Chief Counsel.--Clause (iii) of section 
     3(a)(2)(C) of the Small Business Act (15 U.S.C. 
     632(a)(2)(C)(iii)) is amended to read as follows:
       ``(iii) except in the case of a size standard prescribed by 
     the Administrator, is approved by the Chief Counsel for 
     Advocacy.''.
       (c) Industry Variation.--Paragraph (3) of section 3(a) of 
     the Small Business Act (15 U.S.C. 632(a)(3)) is amended--
       (1) by inserting ``or Chief Counsel for Advocacy, as 
     appropriate'' before ``shall ensure''; and
       (2) by inserting ``or Chief Counsel for Advocacy'' before 
     the period at the end.
       (d) Judicial Review of Size Standards Approved by Chief 
     Counsel.--Section 3(a) of the Small Business Act (15 U.S.C. 
     632(a)) is amended by adding at the end the following new 
     paragraph:
       ``(9) Judicial review of standards approved by chief 
     counsel.--In the case of an action for judicial review of a 
     rule which includes a definition or standard approved by the 
     Chief Counsel for Advocacy under this subsection, the party 
     seeking such review shall be entitled to join the Chief 
     Counsel as a party in such action.''.

     SEC. 311. CLERICAL AMENDMENTS.

       (a) Definitions.--Section 601 of title 5, United States 
     Code, is amended--
       (1) in paragraph (1)--
       (A) by striking the semicolon at the end and inserting a 
     period; and
       (B) by striking ``(1) the term'' and inserting the 
     following:
       ``(1) Agency.--The term'';
       (2) in paragraph (3)--
       (A) by striking the semicolon at the end and inserting a 
     period; and
       (B) by striking ``(3) the term'' and inserting the 
     following:
       ``(3) Small business.--The term'';
       (3) in paragraph (5)--
       (A) by striking the semicolon at the end and inserting a 
     period; and
       (B) by striking ``(5) the term'' and inserting the 
     following:
       ``(5) Small governmental jurisdiction.--The term''; and
       (4) in paragraph (6)--
       (A) by striking ``; and'' and inserting a period; and
       (B) by striking ``(6) the term'' and inserting the 
     following:
       ``(6) Small entity.--The term''.
       (b) Incorporations by Reference and Certifications.--The 
     heading of section 605 of title 5, United States Code, is 
     amended to read as follows:

     ``Sec. 605. Incorporations by reference and certifications''.

       (c) Table of Sections.--The table of sections for chapter 6 
     of title 5, United States Code, is amended--
       (1) by striking the item relating to section 605 and 
     inserting the following new item:

``605. Incorporations by reference and certifications.'';
       (2) by striking the item relating to section 607 and 
     inserting the following new item:

``607. Quantification requirements.'';
     and
       (3) by striking the item relating to section 608 and 
     inserting the following:

``608. Additional powers of Chief Counsel for Advocacy.''.
       (d) Other Clerical Adendments to Chapter 6.--Chapter 6 of 
     title 5, United States Code, is amended as follows:
       (1) In section 603, by striking subsection (d).
       (2) In section 604(a) by striking the second paragraph (6).

     SEC. 312. AGENCY PREPARATION OF GUIDES.

       Section 212(a)(5) the Small Business Regulatory Enforcement 
     Fairness Act of 1996 (5 U.S.C. 601 note) is amended to read 
     as follows:
       ``(5) Agency preparation of guides.--The agency shall, in 
     its sole discretion, taking into account the subject matter 
     of the rule and the language of relevant statutes, ensure 
     that the guide is written using sufficiently plain language 
     likely to be understood by affected small entities. Agencies 
     may prepare separate guides covering groups or classes of 
     similarly affected small entities and may cooperate with 
     associations of small entities to distribute such guides. In 
     developing guides, agencies shall solicit input from affected 
     small entities or associations of affected small entities. An 
     agency may prepare guides and apply this section with respect 
     to a rule or a group of related rules.''.

     SEC. 313. COMPTROLLER GENERAL REPORT.

       Not later than 90 days after the date of enactment of this 
     title, the Comptroller General of the United States shall 
     complete and publish a study that examines whether the Chief 
     Counsel for Advocacy of the Small Business Administration has 
     the capacity and resources to carry out the duties of the 
     Chief Counsel under this title and the amendments made by 
     this title.

     TITLE IV--SUNSHINE FOR REGULATORY DECREES AND SETTLEMENTS ACT

     SEC. 401. SHORT TITLE.

       This title may be cited as the ``Sunshine for Regulatory 
     Decrees and Settlements Act of 2014''.

     SEC. 402. DEFINITIONS.

       In this title--
       (1) the terms ``agency'' and ``agency action'' have the 
     meanings given those terms under section 551 of title 5, 
     United States Code;
       (2) the term ``covered civil action'' means a civil 
     action--
       (A) seeking to compel agency action;
       (B) alleging that the agency is unlawfully withholding or 
     unreasonably delaying an agency action relating to a 
     regulatory action that would affect the rights of--
       (i) private persons other than the person bringing the 
     action; or
       (ii) a State, local, or tribal government; and
       (C) brought under--
       (i) chapter 7 of title 5, United States Code; or
       (ii) any other statute authorizing such an action;
       (3) the term ``covered consent decree'' means--
       (A) a consent decree entered into in a covered civil 
     action; and
       (B) any other consent decree that requires agency action 
     relating to a regulatory action that affects the rights of--
       (i) private persons other than the person bringing the 
     action; or
       (ii) a State, local, or tribal government;
       (4) the term ``covered consent decree or settlement 
     agreement'' means a covered consent decree and a covered 
     settlement agreement; and
       (5) the term ``covered settlement agreement'' means--
       (A) a settlement agreement entered into in a covered civil 
     action; and
       (B) any other settlement agreement that requires agency 
     action relating to a regulatory action that affects the 
     rights of--
       (i) private persons other than the person bringing the 
     action; or
       (ii) a State, local, or tribal government.

     SEC. 403. CONSENT DECREE AND SETTLEMENT REFORM.

       (a) Pleadings and Preliminary Matters.--
       (1) In general.--In any covered civil action, the agency 
     against which the covered civil action is brought shall 
     publish the notice of intent to sue and the complaint in a 
     readily accessible manner, including by making the notice of 
     intent to sue and the complaint available online not later 
     than 15 days after receiving service of the notice of intent 
     to sue or complaint, respectively.
       (2) Entry of a covered consent decree or settlement 
     agreement.--A party may not make a motion for entry of a 
     covered consent decree or to dismiss a civil action pursuant 
     to a covered settlement agreement until after the end of 
     proceedings in accordance with paragraph (1) and 
     subparagraphs (A) and (B) of paragraph (2) of subsection (d) 
     or subsection (d)(3)(A), whichever is later.
       (b) Intervention.--
       (1) Rebuttable presumption.--In considering a motion to 
     intervene in a covered civil action or a civil action in 
     which a covered consent decree or settlement agreement has 
     been proposed that is filed by a person who alleges that the 
     agency action in dispute would affect the person, the court 
     shall presume, subject to rebuttal, that the interests of the 
     person would not be represented adequately by the existing 
     parties to the action.

[[Page H1988]]

       (2) State, local, and tribal governments.--In considering a 
     motion to intervene in a covered civil action or a civil 
     action in which a covered consent decree or settlement 
     agreement has been proposed that is filed by a State, local, 
     or tribal government, the court shall take due account of 
     whether the movant--
       (A) administers jointly with an agency that is a defendant 
     in the action the statutory provisions that give rise to the 
     regulatory action to which the action relates; or
       (B) administers an authority under State, local, or tribal 
     law that would be preempted by the regulatory action to which 
     the action relates.
       (c) Settlement Negotiations.--Efforts to settle a covered 
     civil action or otherwise reach an agreement on a covered 
     consent decree or settlement agreement shall--
       (1) be conducted pursuant to the mediation or alternative 
     dispute resolution program of the court or by a district 
     judge other than the presiding judge, magistrate judge, or 
     special master, as determined appropriate by the presiding 
     judge; and
       (2) include any party that intervenes in the action.
       (d) Publication of and Comment on Covered Consent Decrees 
     or Settlement Agreements.--
       (1) In general.--Not later than 60 days before the date on 
     which a covered consent decree or settlement agreement is 
     filed with a court, the agency seeking to enter the covered 
     consent decree or settlement agreement shall publish in the 
     Federal Register and online--
       (A) the proposed covered consent decree or settlement 
     agreement; and
       (B) a statement providing--
       (i) the statutory basis for the covered consent decree or 
     settlement agreement; and
       (ii) a description of the terms of the covered consent 
     decree or settlement agreement, including whether it provides 
     for the award of attorneys' fees or costs and, if so, the 
     basis for including the award.
       (2) Public comment.--
       (A) In general.--An agency seeking to enter a covered 
     consent decree or settlement agreement shall accept public 
     comment during the period described in paragraph (1) on any 
     issue relating to the matters alleged in the complaint in the 
     applicable civil action or addressed or affected by the 
     proposed covered consent decree or settlement agreement.
       (B) Response to comments.--An agency shall respond to any 
     comment received under subparagraph (A).
       (C) Submissions to court.--When moving that the court enter 
     a proposed covered consent decree or settlement agreement or 
     for dismissal pursuant to a proposed covered consent decree 
     or settlement agreement, an agency shall--
       (i) inform the court of the statutory basis for the 
     proposed covered consent decree or settlement agreement and 
     its terms;
       (ii) submit to the court a summary of the comments received 
     under subparagraph (A) and the response of the agency to the 
     comments;
       (iii) submit to the court a certified index of the 
     administrative record of the notice and comment proceeding; 
     and
       (iv) make the administrative record described in clause 
     (iii) fully accessible to the court.
       (D) Inclusion in record.--The court shall include in the 
     court record for a civil action the certified index of the 
     administrative record submitted by an agency under 
     subparagraph (C)(iii) and any documents listed in the index 
     which any party or amicus curiae appearing before the court 
     in the action submits to the court.
       (3) Public hearings permitted.--
       (A) In general.--After providing notice in the Federal 
     Register and online, an agency may hold a public hearing 
     regarding whether to enter into a proposed covered consent 
     decree or settlement agreement.
       (B) Record.--If an agency holds a public hearing under 
     subparagraph (A)--
       (i) the agency shall--

       (I) submit to the court a summary of the proceedings;
       (II) submit to the court a certified index of the hearing 
     record; and
       (III) provide access to the hearing record to the court; 
     and

       (ii) the full hearing record shall be included in the court 
     record.
       (4) Mandatory deadlines.--If a proposed covered consent 
     decree or settlement agreement requires an agency action by a 
     date certain, the agency shall, when moving for entry of the 
     covered consent decree or settlement agreement or dismissal 
     based on the covered consent decree or settlement agreement, 
     inform the court of--
       (A) any required regulatory action the agency has not taken 
     that the covered consent decree or settlement agreement does 
     not address;
       (B) how the covered consent decree or settlement agreement, 
     if approved, would affect the discharge of the duties 
     described in subparagraph (A); and
       (C) why the effects of the covered consent decree or 
     settlement agreement on the manner in which the agency 
     discharges its duties is in the public interest.
       (e) Submission by the Government.--
       (1) In general.--For any proposed covered consent decree or 
     settlement agreement that contains a term described in 
     paragraph (2), the Attorney General or, if the matter is 
     being litigated independently by an agency, the head of the 
     agency shall submit to the court a certification that the 
     Attorney General or head of the agency approves the proposed 
     covered consent decree or settlement agreement. The Attorney 
     General or head of the agency shall personally sign any 
     certification submitted under this paragraph.
       (2) Terms.--A term described in this paragraph is--
       (A) in the case of a covered consent decree, a term that--
       (i) converts into a nondiscretionary duty a discretionary 
     authority of an agency to propose, promulgate, revise, or 
     amend regulations;
       (ii) commits an agency to expend funds that have not been 
     appropriated and that have not been budgeted for the 
     regulatory action in question;
       (iii) commits an agency to seek a particular appropriation 
     or budget authorization;
       (iv) divests an agency of discretion committed to the 
     agency by statute or the Constitution of the United States, 
     without regard to whether the discretion was granted to 
     respond to changing circumstances, to make policy or 
     managerial choices, or to protect the rights of third 
     parties; or
       (v) otherwise affords relief that the court could not enter 
     under its own authority upon a final judgment in the civil 
     action; or
       (B) in the case of a covered settlement agreement, a term--
       (i) that provides a remedy for a failure by the agency to 
     comply with the terms of the covered settlement agreement 
     other than the revival of the civil action resolved by the 
     covered settlement agreement; and
       (ii) that--

       (I) interferes with the authority of an agency to revise, 
     amend, or issue rules under the procedures set forth in 
     chapter 5 of title 5, United States Code, or any other 
     statute or Executive order prescribing rulemaking procedures 
     for a rulemaking that is the subject of the covered 
     settlement agreement;
       (II) commits the agency to expend funds that have not been 
     appropriated and that have not been budgeted for the 
     regulatory action in question; or
       (III) for such a covered settlement agreement that commits 
     the agency to exercise in a particular way discretion which 
     was committed to the agency by statute or the Constitution of 
     the United States to respond to changing circumstances, to 
     make policy or managerial choices, or to protect the rights 
     of third parties.

       (f) Review by Court.--
       (1) Amicus.--A court considering a proposed covered consent 
     decree or settlement agreement shall presume, subject to 
     rebuttal, that it is proper to allow amicus participation 
     relating to the covered consent decree or settlement 
     agreement by any person who filed public comments or 
     participated in a public hearing on the covered consent 
     decree or settlement agreement under paragraph (2) or (3) of 
     subsection (d).
       (2) Review of deadlines.--
       (A) Proposed covered consent decrees.--For a proposed 
     covered consent decree, a court shall not approve the covered 
     consent decree unless the proposed covered consent decree 
     allows sufficient time and incorporates adequate procedures 
     for the agency to comply with chapter 5 of title 5, United 
     States Code, and other applicable statutes that govern 
     rulemaking and, unless contrary to the public interest, the 
     provisions of any Executive order that governs rulemaking.
       (B) Proposed covered settlement agreements.--For a proposed 
     covered settlement agreement, a court shall ensure that the 
     covered settlement agreement allows sufficient time and 
     incorporates adequate procedures for the agency to comply 
     with chapter 5 of title 5, United States Code, and other 
     applicable statutes that govern rulemaking and, unless 
     contrary to the public interest, the provisions of any 
     Executive order that governs rulemaking.
       (g) Annual Reports.--Each agency shall submit to Congress 
     an annual report that, for the year covered by the report, 
     includes--
       (1) the number, identity, and content of covered civil 
     actions brought against and covered consent decrees or 
     settlement agreements entered against or into by the agency; 
     and
       (2) a description of the statutory basis for--
       (A) each covered consent decree or settlement agreement 
     entered against or into by the agency; and
       (B) any award of attorneys fees or costs in a civil action 
     resolved by a covered consent decree or settlement agreement 
     entered against or into by the agency.

     SEC. 404. MOTIONS TO MODIFY CONSENT DECREES.

       If an agency moves a court to modify a covered consent 
     decree or settlement agreement and the basis of the motion is 
     that the terms of the covered consent decree or settlement 
     agreement are no longer fully in the public interest due to 
     the obligations of the agency to fulfill other duties or due 
     to changed facts and circumstances, the court shall review 
     the motion and the covered consent decree or settlement 
     agreement de novo.

     SEC. 405. EFFECTIVE DATE.

       This title shall apply to--
       (1) any covered civil action filed on or after the date of 
     enactment of this title; and
       (2) any covered consent decree or settlement agreement 
     proposed to a court on or after the date of enactment of this 
     title.

  The CHAIR. No amendment to that amendment in the nature of a 
substitute shall be in order except those

[[Page H1989]]

printed in House Report 113-361. Each such amendment may be offered 
only in the order printed in the report, by a Member designated in the 
report, shall be considered read, shall be debatable for the time 
specified in the report equally divided and controlled by the proponent 
and an opponent, shall not be subject to amendment, and shall not be 
subject to a demand for division of the question.


           Amendment No. 1 Offered by Mr. Johnson of Georgia

  The CHAIR. It is now in order to consider amendment No. 1 printed in 
House Report 113-361.
  Mr. JOHNSON of Georgia. As the designee of Mr. Cartwright, I am 
offering amendment No. 1.
  The CHAIR. The Clerk will designate the amendment.
  The text of the amendment is as follows:

       Page 3, after line 4, the table of sections is amended to 
     read as follows:

       ``Sec.
       ``651. Agency monthly submission to Office of Information 
           and Regulatory Affairs.
       ``652. Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs 
           Publications.
       ``653. Definitions.''.

       Page 8, strike line 21, and all that follows through page 
     9, line 15.
       Page 9, line 16, strike ``654'' and insert ``653''.
       Page 11, strike lines 3 through 7.

  The CHAIR. Pursuant to House Resolution 487, the gentleman from 
Georgia (Mr. Johnson) and a Member opposed each will control 5 minutes.
  The Chair recognizes the gentleman from Georgia.
  Mr. JOHNSON of Georgia. Madam Chair, this amendment simply strikes 
the moratorium provisions in title I of the bill. Madam Chair, a 
regulatory moratorium makes absolutely no sense. Cass Sunstein, the 
former head of the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, has 
observed:

       A moratorium would not be a scalpel or a machete; it would 
     be more like a nuclear bomb, in the sense that it would 
     prevent regulations that cost very little and have very 
     significant economic and public health benefits.

                              {time}  1800

  This is yet another iteration of an attempt by the majority to 
obstruct at all costs and stop all regulations. In the last Congress, 
we considered H.R. 4078, which would have imposed a moratorium for 
``any quarter'' where the Bureau of Labor Statistics average of monthly 
unemployment rates is equal to or less than 6 percent. Although the 
Republican-controlled House passed the bill, it of course died in the 
Senate.
  A moratorium threatens key health and safety regulations. During the 
104th Congress, the House passed the Regulatory Transition Act of 1995, 
a bill that imposed a regulatory moratorium pending the institution of 
a risk analysis and assessment regime. The Committee on Oversight and 
Government Reform Democrats, in their dissent to the reported bill, 
observed that the legislation was ``ill-conceived'' and that it had 
``unknown consequences.'' In particular, they noted:

       The bill ignores the interests of the average American. 
     There is no effort in this bill to sort out the good from the 
     bad. It is a one-size-fits-all solution. The bill will 
     threaten key health and safety regulations, such as improved 
     meat and poultry inspection procedures, while also halting 
     regulations favored by business, such as rules at the FCC to 
     allocate portions of the spectrum for new telephone systems.

  Accordingly, I urge my colleagues to support this amendment that 
would strike the bill's pernicious moratorium provision.
  I reserve the balance of my time.
  Mr. GOODLATTE. Madam Chair, I rise in opposition to the amendment.
  The Acting CHAIR (Ms. Ros-Lehtinen). The gentleman from Virginia is 
recognized for 5 minutes.
  Mr. GOODLATTE. Madam Chair, as Federal regulatory agencies attempt to 
pile more and more regulatory burdens on America's struggling workers, 
families and small businesses, the least we can ask is that they be 
transparent about it. What could be more transparent than requiring 
them, the regulators, on a monthly basis, online, to update the public 
with real-time information about what new regulations are coming and 
how much they will cost?
  Once they have that information, affected individuals and job 
creators will be able to plan and budget meaningfully for new costs 
they may have to absorb. If they are denied that information, they will 
only be blindsided. That is not fair.
  Title I of the ALERRT Act makes sure this information is provided to 
the public. To provide a strong incentive to agencies to honor its 
requirements, title I prohibits new regulations from becoming effective 
unless agencies provide transparent information online for 6 months 
preceding the regulations' issuance.
  The amendment seeks to eliminate that incentive. Without an incentive 
like that in existing law, what have we seen from the Obama 
administration? Repeated failures to make disclosures required by 
statute and executive order, including the administration's yearlong 
hiding of the ball on new regulations during the 2012 election cycle. I 
urge my colleagues to oppose this amendment.
  I reserve the balance of my time.
  Mr. JOHNSON of Georgia. Madam Chair, the majority is pursuing this 
legislation in complete disregard of various recent examples of 
regulatory failure. These include the Massey coal mine explosion in 
West Virginia which took the lives of 29 miners. In fact, next month 
will mark the 1-year anniversary of that explosion. The explosion of 
BP's Deepwater Horizon oil rig in the Gulf of Mexico that stemmed from 
lax regulation of oil drilling platforms is also a prominent example. 
The home foreclosure crisis, the 2008 financial crisis, and the ensuing 
Great Recession, all of which stemmed from the fact that regulators 
under the Bush administration lacked the direction, resources, and 
authority to confront the highly reckless behavior of the private 
sector, and particularly the lending and financial service industries.
  It was a direct response to these regulatory failures in the 
financial realm that Congress passed the Dodd-Frank Act and other 
measures during the 111th Congress, and Republicans have tried to 
repeal those measures and have tried to repeal the Affordable Care Act.
  Of the 58 bills that were passed out of this so-called do-nothing 
Congress in the first year of this session, not one of them was a jobs 
bill; not one job created. Do we set ourselves up again for the kind of 
regulatory Wild Wild West that got us into trouble in the first place?
  I reserve the balance of my time.
  Mr. GOODLATTE. Madam Chair, I yield 1 minute to the gentleman from 
Alabama (Mr. Bachus), the chairman of the subcommittee.
  Mr. BACHUS. Madam Chair, let me say this: the gentleman from Georgia 
has talked about these regulations all being necessary, but the 
President himself on the campaign trail said we need to repeal 
unnecessary Federal regulations. He stood right here in the House when 
he gave two State of the Unions and said we need to eliminate some of 
our Federal regulations, and he charged the Congress to do that. It has 
been part of his agenda. It has been part of what he has campaigned on 
and what he has brought to the Congress as his State of the Union 
message, and that is exactly what this bill does.
  He said regulations aren't abstract ideas. They cost money. In 
certain cases, the benefit is simply not there. We are not talking 
about endangering public health. We are talking about regulations that 
endanger jobs unnecessarily.
  Mr. JOHNSON of Georgia. Madam Chair, I think everyone can agree that 
the Federal agencies need the resources to be able to go back and 
review and rescind and repeal any unnecessary regulations, but we have 
been busy cutting government for the last 3 years. This legislation 
before us won't cut any regulations, but it certainly will keep any 
regulations from coming forward. I think that would accomplish the 
objective of the Republicans here, which is to protect Big Business.
  With that, I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. GOODLATTE. Madam Chair, I yield myself the balance of my time, 
and just say that the fact of the matter is that the provision in the 
bill that this amendment attacks is a very straightforward provision 
that just provides for transparency. It doesn't stop any of the 
regulations the gentleman from Georgia referenced; it simply says if 
you do the regulations, tell us about them ahead of time so as you move 
toward the final implementation, the last 6 months before it goes

[[Page H1990]]

into effect, the public gets to see it, the media gets to see it, the 
businesses that are impacted get to see it, the workers who may lose 
their jobs get to see it. That allows them to prepare for it, and it 
allows them to comment. It allows them to try to change the law. It is 
simply a fair way to enter into regulations. It is a commonsense 
provision that should be kept in the bill, and the amendment should be 
defeated.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  The Acting CHAIR. The question is on the amendment offered by the 
gentleman from Georgia (Mr. Johnson).
  The amendment was rejected.


            Amendment No. 2 Offered by Mr. Murphy of Florida

  The Acting CHAIR. It is now in order to consider amendment No. 2 
printed in House Report 113-361.
  Mr. MURPHY of Florida. Madam Chair, I have an amendment at the desk.
  The Acting CHAIR. The Clerk will designate the amendment.
  The text of the amendment is as follows:

       In the bill, strike title II and title IV, and redesignate 
     provisions and conform the table of contents accordingly.

  The Acting CHAIR. Pursuant to House Resolution 487, the gentleman 
from Florida (Mr. Murphy) and a Member opposed each will control 5 
minutes.
  The Chair recognizes the gentleman from Florida.
  Mr. MURPHY of Florida. Madam Chair, as a former small businessman, I 
am acutely aware of the strain unnecessary regulations have on 
businesses. While I strongly support the underlying bill's goal of 
reducing the regulatory burden on American companies, truly smart 
regulatory reform would preserve government's ability to enforce clean 
air laws, food safety, and consumer protections. It would not pile on 
duplicative procedural hurdles on already inefficient agencies, gumming 
up government bureaucracy and obstructing agencies' most basic 
functions.
  Too often, the debate up here is about more regulations versus fewer 
regulations, but we should be focused on smarter regulations.
  We should all be able to agree that government has a role to play in 
clean water for Americans, an issue the people in the Treasure Coast 
are all too familiar with.
  We should all be able to agree that when a consumer walks through the 
door of a bank looking for a mortgage, that government has a role to 
play in protecting that consumer, but these regulations should help the 
public without unnecessarily hindering business, our Nation's economic 
engine. We must both protect Americans and enable commerce. The 
business community is not against all regulation, they are against 
excessively burdensome regulation.
  In my district, business owners believe that protecting the 
environment and clean water standards is not antigrowth. In fact, it is 
pro-jobs.
  When I recently toured the family-run Armellini trucking company in 
my district, the Armellinis were not against truck safety standards. 
They do the right thing by their workers, and they abide by safe 
driving rules. They want regulations to ensure that others do the same. 
What they are against are new truck safety standards that hinder growth 
without actually making trucking any safer.
  Smarter regulations should protect good businesses from bad actors.
  I will give another example. Denny Hudson runs Seacoast Bank, a small 
community bank in Stuart, Florida. Like many small financial 
institutions, Seacoast weathered the financial crisis because they were 
not involved in risky financial behavior. They expected mortgages to be 
repaid on time, and they wanted the small businesses they supported to 
succeed.
  After the financial crisis of 2008 nearly took down the global 
economy, most people agreed that government regulators needed to better 
protect our financial system, but if new regulations keep community 
banks like Seacoast from getting creditworthy young families into their 
first home, or providing capital to new small businesses, that is a 
problem.
  My amendment is simple. While recognizing the goal of the underlying 
legislation to improve the regulatory process, my amendment maintains 
the government's responsibility to protect the environment, consumer 
health, and workplace safety. I propose removing costly hurdles that 
would make government less efficient, while protecting the right of the 
American people to hold their government accountable when it fails to 
protect their health, safety, and civil rights.
  My colleagues across the aisle frequently complain about too much 
bureaucracy. We should not compound the problem by creating duplicative 
government processes. Let's examine the effectiveness of regulations 
already in place.
  Senator King introduced a bipartisan bill that would do exactly that. 
It would establish a process to identify and either strike or improve 
outdated and obsolete regulations. We should be doing the same thing in 
this body. At a time when we should be doing more with less, can we 
really afford to increase spending with more government bureaucracy?
  I urge my colleagues to support this commonsense amendment to improve 
the underlying bill, save the partisan fight over controversial 
sections for another day, streamline the regulatory process, and save 
70 million taxpayer dollars. I thank my colleagues.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. GOODLATTE. Madam Chair, I rise in opposition to the amendment.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Virginia is recognized for 5 
minutes.
  Mr. GOODLATTE. America's small businesses, workers, and families are 
being crushed by an annual regulatory burden that in 2012 amounted to 
$15,000 per household. That is an expense bigger than any family 
expense except for housing, and the number of new costly regulations 
just keeps growing and growing.

                              {time}  1815

  In response, titles II and IV of the bill, which this amendment seeks 
to strike, those two titles write into statute best practices into 
rulemaking that help to lower costs, avoid unnecessary regulation, and 
keep pro-regulatory special interests from abusing the courts to force 
new costly regulations upon the public.
  They do all of this without denying the ability of agencies to issue 
new regulations that are sensible to fulfill statutory mandates.
  Why is this so important that the bill do that? Because although 
these are best practices, they are too often honored in the breach or 
not at all because they are not yet written into statute.
  The amendment substantially guts the bill; denies important 
protections to American workers, families, and job creators; and 
unjustifiably prolongs the time during which regulatory agencies can 
operate without adequate checks and balances.
  I urge my colleagues to oppose the amendment, and I yield back the 
balance of my time.
  The Acting CHAIR. The question is on the amendment offered by the 
gentleman from Florida (Mr. Murphy).
  The amendment was rejected.


                 Amendment No. 3 Offered by Mr. Rothfus

  The Acting CHAIR. It is now in order to consider amendment No. 3 
printed in House Report 113-361.
  Mr. ROTHFUS. Madam Chairman, I have an amendment at the desk.
  The Acting CHAIR. The Clerk will designate the amendment.
  The text of the amendment is as follows:

       Page 12, after line 19, insert the following (and 
     redesignate accordingly):
       ``(17) `negative-impact on jobs and wages rule' means any 
     rule that the agency that made the rule or the Administrator 
     of the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs 
     determines is likely to--
       ``(A) in one or more sectors of the economy that has a 6-
     digit code under the North American Industry Classification 
     System, reduce employment not related to new regulatory 
     compliance by 1 percent or more annually during the 1-year, 
     5-year, or 10-year period after implementation;
       ``(B) in one or more sectors of the economy that has a 6-
     digit code under the North American Industry Classification 
     System, reduce average weekly wages for employment not 
     related to new regulatory compliance by 1 percent or more 
     annually during the 1-year, 5-year, or 10-year period after 
     implementation;
       ``(C) in any industry area (as such term is defined in the 
     Current Population Survey conducted by the Bureau of Labor 
     Statistics) in which the most recent annual unemployment rate 
     for the industry area is greater than 5 percent, as 
     determined by the Bureau

[[Page H1991]]

     of Labor Statistics in the Current Population Survey, reduce 
     employment not related to new regulatory compliance during 
     the first year after implementation; or
       ``(D) in any industry area in which the Bureau of Labor 
     Statistics projects in the Occupational Employment Statistics 
     program that the employment level will decrease by 1 percent 
     or more, further reduce employment not related to new 
     regulatory compliance during the first year after 
     implementation;''.
       Page 16, line 16, insert after ``domestic jobs),'' the 
     following: ``wages,''.
       Page 16, line 25, insert after ``High-impact Rules'' the 
     following: ``Negative-impact on Jobs and Wages Rules,''.
       Page 17, line 2, strike ``a major rule or high-impact 
     rule'' and insert the following: ``a major rule, a high-
     impact rule, a negative-impact on jobs and wages rule,''.
       Page 29, line 13, strike ``and''.
       Page 29, line 14, strike ``major rule or high-impact 
     rule,'' and insert the following: ``major rule, high-impact 
     rule, or negative-impact on jobs and wages rule,''.
       Page 30, line 2, strike the period at the end and insert 
     ``; and''.
       Page 30, after line 2, insert the following:
       ``(H) for any negative-impact on jobs and wages rule, a 
     statement that the head of the agency that made the rule 
     approved the rule knowing about the findings and 
     determination of the agency or the Administrator of the 
     Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs that qualified 
     the rule as a negative impact on jobs and wages rule.''.

  The Acting CHAIR. Pursuant to House Resolution 487, the gentleman 
from Pennsylvania (Mr. Rothfus) and a Member opposed each will control 
5 minutes.
  The Chair recognizes the gentleman from Pennsylvania.
  Mr. ROTHFUS. Madam Chairman, Americans face a regulatory burden with 
staggering costs to our economy and with substantial impacts on family 
budgets.
  A recent paper by the Competitive Enterprise Institute estimates that 
the cost of Federal regulations to the economy exceeds $1.8 trillion. 
The American Action Forum predicts that $143 billion in new regulations 
may be finalized this year.
  These figures are very troubling. That is why the bill we are 
considering is so important. H.R. 2804 reforms the regulatory process 
and will help promote the economic growth we so desperately need to get 
our economy booming again and add jobs.
  The amendment that I offer today with my friend, Mr. Barr, is simple 
and one that I hope my colleagues on both sides of the aisle will 
support.
  If a regulation decreases employment or wages by 1 percent or more in 
an industry, it will be subject to heightened review and additional 
transparency requirements.
  The amendment also requires agency heads to certify that they 
knowingly approved a rule that will result in lost jobs or reduced 
wages.
  The principle is simple: If Federal bureaucrats are going to 
implement rules that take wages or jobs from Americans, they should 
take responsibility for their decisions.
  It is important that Washington bureaucrats think through the 
impacts, the costs, and the burdens that red tape imposes on American 
families and communities. Bureaucratic elites are regulating solid, 
good-paying jobs right out of existence.
  At a time when wages are stagnant for many American workers and when 
we so desperately need to grow the economy and add jobs, this is 
unbelievable.
  On February 7, with my hardhat secured and my headlamp on, I had the 
privilege of traveling underground to learn more about the work and 
operations of the Madison mine in Nanty Glo, Pennsylvania. Miners like 
these work hard every day to power our electric grid and to supply our 
steel mills.
  But their way of life is being purposefully regulated out of 
existence. Dan, the mine electrician, recently asked me what is going 
to be done to curb the President's war on coal. He wrote: As a mine 
electrician in your district, my men are asking me questions like: Is 
this ever going to end, or are we all going to be looking for new jobs?
  My friends, this problem extends well beyond the coalfields of 
Pennsylvania or Kentucky. Regulations cost each household almost 
$14,700. That is almost 30 percent of an average Pennsylvania family's 
annual income.
  Complying with this mountain of paperwork will also cost families and 
businesses almost 10.4 billion hours this year. Who thinks that this is 
the most productive use of their time?
  Madam Chairman, the American people cannot afford more lost jobs and 
further reduced wages. Every lost job means one less person helping 
with the taxes needed to support Social Security, Medicare, and other 
critical programs for veterans, health care, education, and national 
defense.
  I urge my colleagues to support the Rothfus-Barr amendment and the 
underlying bill.
  Madam Chairman, I yield 1 minute to the gentleman from Kentucky (Mr. 
Barr), my friend.
  Mr. BARR. Madam Chairman, I thank the gentleman and my friend from 
Pennsylvania for yielding. I appreciate the hard work that both he and 
his staff have put into this important amendment, which I had the 
pleasure to join him in introducing.
  As I indicated earlier in the debate on the underlying legislation, 
in Kentucky, the overregulation of the Kentucky coal industry has 
really taken a toll. Under President Obama, Appalachian Kentucky has 
lost about 7,000 jobs in just 5 years, putting coal industry employment 
in the Commonwealth to its lowest level since records were first kept 
in 1927.
  This amendment would strengthen the underlying regulatory reform 
legislation by holding accountable those agencies that go after already 
suffering workers like Kentucky and Pennsylvania coal miners.
  Mr. JOHNSON of Georgia. Madam Chairman, I rise in opposition to the 
Rothfus amendment.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman is recognized for 5 minutes.
  Mr. JOHNSON of Georgia. Madam Chairman, this amendment would add an 
additional level of analysis in the regulatory process that examines 
whether or not regulations have a negative impact on jobs and wages.
  Adding this additional requirement that is highly speculative and 
analytical would further slow down the rulemaking process, adding more 
red tape.
  I invite the gentleman to support my amendment, amendment No. 9, 
which we will get to shortly, that would exclude from the bill any 
rule, consent decree, or settlement agreement that would result in net 
job creation or have greater benefits than costs.
  I would also hope that my friends on both sides of the aisle would 
have a desire to improve the economy and take actions to foster job 
growth, instead of adding more red tape to the regulatory process.
  To the extent that regulations have anything to do with jobs, H.R. 
2804's proponents should overwhelmingly support my amendment No. 9, 
which exempts from the bill all rules that OMB determines would result 
in net job creation.
  With respect to regulations stifling job creation, the evidence, 
Madam Chairman, is to the contrary. If anything, regulations can 
promote job growth and put Americans back to work.
  For instance, the BlueGreen Alliance notes:

       Studies on the direct impact of regulations on job growth 
     have found that most regulations result in modest job growth 
     or have no effect, and economic growth has consistently 
     surged forward in concert with these health and safety 
     protections. The Clean Air Act is a shining example, given 
     that the economy has grown 204 percent and private sector job 
     creation has expanded 86 percent since its passage in 1970.

  In reference to the Clean Air Act, the Office of Management and 
Budget observed that 40 years of success with this measure have 
demonstrated that strong environmental protections and strong economic 
growth go hand-in-hand.
  Regulations create valuable jobs and research across industries. For 
example, a pending regulation limiting the amount of airborne mercury 
will not just reduce the amount of seriously toxic pollutants, but 
create as many as 45,000 temporary jobs and possibly 8,000 permanent 
jobs, as The New York Times noted last month.
  Heightened vehicle emissions standards have spurred clean vehicle 
research, development, and production efforts that in turn have already 
generated more than 150,000 jobs at 504 facilities in 43 States across 
the United States of America.
  The majority's own witness clearly debunked the myth that regulations 
stymie job creation during his testimony at a Judiciary Committee 
hearing held in the last Congress on an antiregulatory bill.

[[Page H1992]]

  Christopher DeMuth, with the American Enterprise Institute, a 
conservative think tank, stated in his prepared testimony:

       The ``focus on jobs . . . can lead to confusion in 
     regulatory debates'' and that the employment effects of 
     regulation, while important, ``are indeterminant.''

  The claim by the bill's proponents, namely, that regulatory 
uncertainty creates a disincentive for businesses to add jobs, was 
rejected by Bruce Bartlett, a senior policy analyst in the Reagan and 
George H. W. Bush administrations.
  He observed:

       Regulatory uncertainty is a canard invented by Republicans 
     that allows them to use current economic problems to pursue 
     an agenda supported by the business community, year in and 
     year out. In other words, it is a simple case of political 
     opportunism, not a serious effort to deal with high 
     employment.

  That was Bruce Bartlett.
  Leading scholars, such as Wake Forest Law Professor Sidney Shapiro 
has testified:

       All of the available evidence contradicts the claim that 
     regulatory uncertainty is deterring business development and 
     investment.

  Scant demand, not regulations, drives hiring choices.
  In sum, there is no credible evidence that regulations depress job 
creation.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. ROTHFUS. Madam Chairman, may I inquire as to how much time is 
remaining?
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman from Pennsylvania has 1 minute 
remaining.
  Mr. ROTHFUS. Madam Chairman, I yield 30 seconds to the gentleman from 
Virginia (Mr. Goodlatte), the chairman.
  Mr. GOODLATTE. Madam Chairman, I thank the gentleman from 
Pennsylvania for yielding.
  I strongly support the amendment that he and the gentleman from 
Kentucky (Mr. Barr) have offered. I urge my colleagues to support it as 
well, which protects America's workers.
  I support the amendment.
  Those who suffer the most from over-reaching regulations are workers 
who lose their jobs or see their wages cut on account of regulations 
that cost too much. Displaced workers suffer lower earnings once they 
find new work. That earnings gap persists over the long-term. Blue 
collar workers are the hardest hit.
  Those who take too long to find new work are more likely to leave the 
labor force and retire. These workers, their families, and this country 
cannot afford to lose good work, good workers and good wages to 
needless regulatory excess. This amendment makes sure that agencies 
better analyze the potential impacts of new regulations on jobs and 
wages. And it makes sure that agencies come clean with the American 
people when they impose new regulations that they know will impose real 
adverse impacts on jobs and wages.
  It will protect America's workers and families--and give voters the 
information they need to hold agencies and their enablers accountable 
when agencies recklessly destroy jobs and wages.
  I urge my colleagues to support the amendment.
  Mr. ROTHFUS. Madam Chair, I urge my colleagues to pass this 
amendment. It is a good amendment. It will shine a light on the process 
of the regulatory elites here in Washington, D.C., and the impact it is 
having on our jobs and on our wages.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  The Acting CHAIR. The question is on the amendment offered by the 
gentleman from Pennsylvania (Mr. Rothfus).
  The question was taken; and the Acting Chair announced that the ayes 
appeared to have it.
  Mr. ROTHFUS. Madam Chairman, I demand a recorded vote.
  The Acting CHAIR. Pursuant to clause 6 of rule XVIII, further 
proceedings on the amendment offered by the gentleman from Pennsylvania 
will be postponed.


             Amendment No. 4 Offered by Mr. Brady of Texas

  The Acting CHAIR. It is now in order to consider amendment No. 4 
printed in House Report 113-361.
  Mr. BRADY of Texas. Madam Chairman, I have an amendment at the desk.
  The Acting CHAIR. The Clerk will designate the amendment.
  The text of the amendment is as follows:

       Page 17, line 23, strike ``; and'' and insert the 
     following: ``;''.
       Page 18, line 4, insert ``and'' after ``rule;'';
       Page 18, insert after line 4 the following:
       ``(E) an achievable objective for the rule and metrics by 
     which the agency will measure progress toward that 
     objective;''.
       Page 19, line 20, strike ``and''.
       Page 19, line 22, insert ``and'' after ``statute;''.
       Page 19, insert after line 22 the following:
       ``(iii) an achievable objective for the rule and metrics by 
     which the agency will measure progress toward that 
     objective;''.
       Page 29, line 13, strike ``and''.
       Page 29, insert after line 13 the following:
       ``(G) the agency's reasoned final determination that the 
     rule meets the objectives that the agency identified in 
     subsection (d)(1)(E)(iii) or that other objectives are more 
     appropriate in light of the full administrative record and 
     the rule meets those objectives;
       ``(H) the agency's reasoned final determination that it did 
     not deviate from the metrics the agency included in 
     subsection (d)(1)(E)(iii) or that other metrics are more 
     appropriate in light of the full administrative record and 
     the agency did not deviate from those metrics; and''.
       Page 29, line 14, strike ``(G)(i) for any major rule'' and 
     insert the following: ``(I)(i) for any major rule''.

  The Acting CHAIR. Pursuant to House Resolution 487, the gentleman 
from Texas (Mr. Brady) and a Member opposed each will control 5 
minutes.
  The Chair recognizes the gentleman from Texas.
  Mr. BRADY of Texas. Madam Chairman, we are going through a very 
disappointing economic recovery. Millions of people can't find full-
time work; millions more have given up looking for work; and our local 
businesses are just drowning in red tape.
  They often ask: Doesn't anyone in Washington consider the impact on 
our local businesses and the economy from all this new red tape before 
they put it in place? Well, sadly not often enough.
  In 2012, the Federal Government imposed 3,708 new Federal rules. 
Guess how many of them had a cost benefit analysis? Simply ask the 
question: How does this affect the economy? The answer is 14--14 out of 
more than 3,000.
  I applaud Chairman Goodlatte's commitment to reforming the way this 
government conducts red tape. I have an amendment that complements his 
efforts, one drawn from my own Sound Regulation Act, which I think is 
helpful as we move this reform through.
  The point here is this: When a Federal agency sets out to adopt new 
rules and red tape, the agency has a responsibility to state clearly 
the achievable objective of those rules or regulations. After all, our 
citizens have the right to know what their Federal Government intends 
to accomplish with this red tape.

                              {time}  1830

  The agency also has the responsibility to tell the American people up 
front what metrics it is going to use to measure the progress toward 
that objective. No more manipulative statistics. No more fuzzy math. 
When the agency publishes the final rule, it has the responsibility to 
certify to the American people that the rule actually meets the 
objective the agency originally identified. It is just common sense.
  My amendment says to regulators: Tell us your objective. Tell us how 
you are going to meet it and measure it. Then tell us you actually did 
what you promised.
  It is common sense, and it may just help put this painful recovery 
behind us.
  Madam Chairman, I yield to the gentleman from Virginia (Mr. 
Goodlatte), the chairman of the committee.
  Mr. GOODLATTE. I thank the gentleman from Texas for yielding, and I 
strongly support his amendment.
  Madam Chairman, one of the simplest, most effective, and most 
commonsense measures we can take to make sure agencies issue smarter 
regulations is to require them to do just what this amendment requires: 
identify achievable objectives for new regulations when they propose 
them; identify metrics by which they will measure whether those 
objectives are achieved; and at the end of their rulemakings, live by 
their own, stated objectives and whether the metrics say the proposed 
regulations can achieve them.
  That is plain, simple, commonsense decisionmaking that American 
families and businesses live by every day. It is high time that Federal 
agencies be required to live by these standards, too.

[[Page H1993]]

  I urge my colleagues to support the gentleman from Texas' amendment.
  Mr. BRADY of Texas. Madam Chair, I reserve the balance of my time.
  Mr. JOHNSON of Georgia. Madam Chair, I rise in opposition to the 
amendment.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman is recognized for 5 minutes.
  Mr. JOHNSON of Georgia. Madam Chair, this amendment reminds me of how 
things used to be when I was a young parent and I had my children at 
home. When it came time for my favorite TV program, I would tell them 
to go upstairs and clean up their room again.
  They would say, Daddy, we already cleaned up the room, and I would 
say, Go clean it up again.
  Then when they would scamper upstairs, I would put the TV on and 
watch my program in peace. So it gave them some busy work.
  That is pretty much what this amendment does. It creates an 
additional requirement in the rulemaking process for an agency to 
articulate achievable objectives and metrics indicating progress toward 
those objectives.
  This amendment piles on the bill's numerous mandatory new rulemaking 
requirements, and it implies that agencies issue rules that lack an 
achievable objective, notwithstanding the fact that regulations already 
go through an extensive public notice and comment period as well as 
being subjected to judicial review.
  The bill would impose unneeded and costly analytical and procedural 
requirements on agencies that would prevent them from performing their 
statutory responsibilities. It would also create needless regulatory 
and legal uncertainty, increase costs for businesses and State, local, 
and tribal governments, and it would impede commonsense protections for 
the American public.
  That is why, Madam Chair, there are more than 150 consumer groups, 
environmental organizations, labor unions, and other entities that are 
strenuously opposed to this bill. These organizations include the AFL-
CIO, the Alliance for Justice, the American Federation of State, County 
and Municipal Employees, the American Lung Association, the Consumer 
Federation of America, the Consumers Union, the International 
Brotherhood of Teamsters, the UAW, the League of Conservation Voters, 
the National Women's Law Center, the National Resources Defense 
Council, People For the American Way, Public Citizen, the Sierra Club, 
the Service Employees International Union, the Union of Concerned 
Scientists, and the United Steelworkers, just to name a few.
  Likewise, the administration has issued a strongly worded veto threat 
against this bill. It warns that the bill would impose unneeded and 
costly analytical and procedural requirements on agencies that would 
prevent them from performing their statutory duties.
  For those reasons, I strongly urge my colleagues to oppose this 
amendment.
  Madam Chair, I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. BRADY of Texas. Madam Chair, very briefly, my friend from Georgia 
is a good man. I am surprised there aren't regulations about when you 
can send your kids up to clean their rooms again.
  Look, this is just saying to Washington: tell us what your goal is--
how you are going to measure it and if you achieve it--before you put 
this red tape on our local businesses. It is common sense and, frankly, 
long overdue. I urge strong support for this amendment.
  Madam Chairman, I yield back the balance of my time.
  The Acting CHAIR. The question is on the amendment offered by the 
gentleman from Texas (Mr. Brady).
  The amendment was agreed to.


                 Amendment No. 5 Offered by Mr. Rigell

  The Acting CHAIR. It is now in order to consider amendment No. 5 
printed in House Report 113-361.
  Mr. RIGELL. Madam Chairman, I have an amendment at the desk.
  The Acting CHAIR. The Clerk will designate the amendment.
  The text of the amendment is as follows:

       Page 53, line 24, strike ``and''.
       Page 54, line 3, after ``entitites'' the following: ``; 
     and''.
       Page 54, line 3, insert before the first period the 
     following:
       ``(8) describing any impairment of the ability of small 
     entities to have access to credit''.

  The Acting CHAIR. Pursuant to House Resolution 487, the gentleman 
from Virginia (Mr. Rigell) and a Member opposed each will control 5 
minutes.
  The Chair recognizes the gentleman from Virginia.
  Mr. RIGELL. I would like to thank my fellow Virginian, Chairman 
Goodlatte, for his leadership on the underlying bill. I also want to 
thank Mr. Graves, the chairman of the House Committee on Small 
Business, for working with me and my staff on advancing my amendment.
  Madam Chairman, I think my amendment is noteworthy first for its 
brevity, as it is only 14 words long in total, yet it packs a powerful 
and much-needed punch because it addresses a central issue to job 
creation, which is a shared value and a shared objective in this House: 
increasing access to credit and, in some cases, not prohibiting access 
to credit.
  This is not a theoretical issue for me. I have been a businessman for 
30 years and an entrepreneur for about 23 years, and I know the great 
joy of looking into an applicant and fellow American's eyes and saying 
these incredible words: ``You're hired.'' Those are life-changing 
words.
  One of the reasons that I could say those words to those who applied 
at our company was that a local lender, a small local bank, was able to 
lend me the money I needed to start my business and to grow my 
business. Yet those very same small lenders--those small banks in 
Virginia's Second Congressional District--are reeling. They are reeling 
from waves of new regulations, nearly all of which are overly 
burdensome and so many of which are not needed at all. They should 
never have been written. The result is that some banks are hiring, but 
they are not hiring loan officers; they are hiring compliance officers.
  From my own experience, Madam Chairman, and from my own deliberate 
and intentional listening to the small businesses and lenders of 
Virginia's Second Congressional District, I have come to a conclusion 
which is clear, which is irrefutable in my mind, and which is deeply 
troubling. That is that the actions of this body collectively and of 
the administration have made it more difficult--not easier but more 
difficult--for small businesses to get the credit they need to grow 
their businesses and to hire more people.
  This cannot be reconciled with the words that President Obama shared 
in this very Chamber in his State of the Union speech in 2012. It was a 
statement that should have been the basis for common ground. He noted 
correctly that most new jobs and businesses, like my own, were created 
in startups and small businesses.
  He said this:

       Let's pass an agenda that helps small businesses succeed. 
     Tear down regulations that prevent aspiring entrepreneurs 
     from getting the financing to grow.

  H.R. 2804 does just that. It is a significant and meaningful step 
forward in that area.
  That is why I have come to the House floor this evening. What a 
privilege it is to be here, to be a strong voice for the hardworking 
men and women across this country who are laboring under an increasing 
level of burden from the Federal Government--one that should get out of 
the way, yet it continues to put roadblock after roadblock after 
roadblock in the way of hardworking Americans who are trying to create 
jobs. They have mortgages on their homes. They have signed these loans 
personally. I understand the burden and the challenges that are faced 
by small business owners. One reason I sought this office was to be as 
strong a voice as I could be for those who, if you unleash them, are 
the most powerful job-creating engine the world has ever known--small 
business owners in America.
  That is what H.R. 2804 does, and I think my amendment strengthens 
that. I appreciate the opportunity to speak in favor of this, and I ask 
my colleagues for their careful consideration of my amendment because I 
think, in doing so, they will vote in the affirmative. I urge my 
colleagues to vote in favor of H.R. 2804 and for my amendment.
  Madam Chairman, I reserve the balance of my time.

[[Page H1994]]

  Mr. JOHNSON of Georgia. Madam Chair, I rise in opposition to this 
amendment.
  The Acting CHAIR. The gentleman is recognized for 5 minutes.
  Mr. JOHNSON of Georgia. Madam Chair, this amendment harkens me back 
to the time when my kids were young and when I was trying to make sure 
that they would not jump into something where one of their schoolmates 
might be being bullied, and then they would jump in on the part of the 
bully or would just participate in the antagonism against the victim, 
and I told them not to pile on.
  This amendment is a classic case of piling on. It would add an eighth 
requirement for the initial regulatory flexibility analysis specified 
by the bill. The agency would have to provide a detailed statement 
describing any impairment of the ability of small entities to have 
access to credit. The bill already requires agencies to consider all 
indirect costs, which would include this issue. This amendment would 
allow yet another ground for a regulated entity to challenge a 
rulemaking.
  Title III does nothing to help small businesses and other small 
entities reduce compliance costs or to ensure agency compliance with 
the RFA. Instead, this amendment would impose another unnecessary 
burden on agencies. This is just another piling on of the already 
burdensome new rulemaking requirements.
  This amendment as well as the bill ignore the fact that the small 
businesses, like their larger counterparts, can substantially impact 
the health and safety of their workers as well as that of the general 
public. Small businesses, like all businesses, provide services and 
goods that affect our lives and carry the same risks of harm as the 
services and goods that large businesses provide. It makes no 
difference to someone who is breathing dirty air or drinking poisoned 
water whether the hazards come from a small or a large business.
  Speaking of business, the American Sustainable Business Council is a 
growing national coalition of businesses and business organizations 
committed to advancing policies that support a vibrant and sustainable 
economy. The American Sustainable Business Council, through its partner 
organizations, represents over 200,000 businesses and more than 325,000 
business professionals, including industry associations, local and 
State Chambers of Commerce, micro enterprises, social enterprises, 
green and sustainable businesses, local livable economy groups, women 
and minority business leaders, and investors and investor networks.
  While some inside the beltway claim that regulations are holding back 
our economic recovery, the American Sustainable Business Council has a 
different view. It, along with other small business organizations, 
released a February 2012 poll of small business owners which found that 
small businesses don't see regulations as a major concern. Its polling 
confirmed that small business owners value regulations if they are 
well-constructed and fairly enforced.

                              {time}  1845

  They found that small business owners believe certain governmental 
regulations play an important role: 86 percent of them believe some 
regulation is necessary for a modern economy; 93 percent of respondents 
believe their business can live with some regulation if it is fair and 
manageable; 78 percent of small employers agree regulations are 
important in protecting small businesses from unfair competition and to 
help level the playing field with big businesses; 79 percent of small 
business owners support having clean air and water in the community in 
order to keep their family, employees, and customers healthy.
  Madam Chair, I include the letter from the American Sustainable 
Business Council in the Record, and I yield back the balance of my 
time.

                                              American Sustainable


                                             Business Council,

                                Washington, DC, February 25, 2014.
       Dear Representative: I write you today to urge you to 
     oppose the mini-omnibus bill of four flawed regulatory 
     proposals (packaged into H.R. 2804) and H.R. 899, the 
     Unfunded Mandates Transparency and Information Act. Votes on 
     these bills are expected this week. These bills hurt small 
     and medium sized businesses by halting the regulatory process 
     that levels the playing group for these businesses to 
     compete, creates incentives for innovation and protects our 
     customers and employees.
       The package of Anti-Regulatory policies these bills 
     represent constitutes a shift away from forty years of 
     regulatory precedent that protects the public against a range 
     of market imperfections. These policies will also lead to a 
     more chaotic and less competitive market. And finally, the 
     bills will have the unintended consequence of shifting the 
     burden of proof for environmental, health and safety issues 
     back to taxpayers and away from powerful corporate interests. 
     Eroding the operational capacity of regulatory agencies to do 
     their job, as these bills appear designed to do, will not 
     foster productive growth among small and mid-sized firms. 
     Instead these actions will allow the largest firms to further 
     dominate the marketplace.
       Also if enacted, this package of bills would open the door 
     for more problems like the financial and mortgage crisis of 
     2008. This would, in our view, would further damage our 
     economy, stifle consumer demand and put small companies out 
     of business.
       The American Sustainable Business Council (ASBC) is a 
     growing national coalition of businesses and business 
     organizations committed to advancing policies that support a 
     vibrant and sustainable economy. ASBC, through its partner 
     organizations, represents over 200,000 businesses and more 
     than 325,000 business professionals, including industry 
     associations, local and state chambers of commerce, micro-
     enterprise, social enterprise, green and sustainable 
     business, local living economy groups, woman and minority 
     business leaders, and investor networks.
       While some inside the Beltway claim that regulations are 
     holding back our economic recovery, ASBC has a different 
     view. ASBC, along with other small business organizations, 
     released in February 2012 a poll of small business owners 
     which found that small businesses don't see regulations as a 
     major concern.
       Our polling confirmed that small business owners value 
     regulations if they are well-constructed and fairly enforced:
        Small business owners believe certain government 
     regulations play an important role
        86% believe some regulation is necessary for a modern 
     economy and 93% of respondents believe their business can 
     live with some regulation if it is fair and manageable.
        78% of small employers agree regulations are important in 
     protecting small businesses from i unfair competition and to 
     level the playing field with big business.
        79% of small business owners support having clean air and 
     water in their community in order to keep their family, 
     employees and customers healthy.
        61% support standards that move the country towards energy 
     efficiency and clean energy.
       Supporting the ASBC 2012 poll is a Wells Fargo/Gallup poll 
     of small businesses conducted this past October, which found 
     that only seven percent mentioned regulations as being an 
     important challenge.
       Given the important role regulations play yet there still 
     may be a small percentage of businesses having difficulty 
     with them, the answer is not H.R. 2804 and H.R. 899. Instead 
     we believe the solution lies in expanding the capacity of the 
     regulatory agencies to provide assistance to small businesses 
     in compliance. Increasing the number of agency ombudsmen and/
     or ombudsmen within the SBA and giving them the resources to 
     be more proactive as well as responsive will target federal 
     dollars to specific areas of concern. Our experience has been 
     that the ombudsmen process works well.
       Blocking, weakening or delaying critical standards and 
     safeguards will not address existing needed regulations that 
     a small number of small businesses have trouble with 
     compliance. It will only worsen the uneven economic playing 
     field that leaves many small and medium sized businesses at a 
     competitive disadvantage. It also inhibits innovation in new 
     technologies that can create good, sustainable jobs and 
     create safer products, workplaces and communities.
       We call on the House of Representatives to reject this 
     package of anti-regulatory policies.
           Sincerely
     David Levine,
       CEO.
     Frank Knapp,
       Co-chair, ASBC Action Fund & CEO, South Carolina Small 
     Business Chamber of Commerce.

  Mr. RIGELL. Madam Chair, I would just state to my friend and 
colleague that the only piling on, as I see it, are the regulations 
that are continuing to burden the small business owners.
  I yield the remainder of my time to the gentleman from Virginia, 
Chairman Goodlatte, my friend and colleague.
  Mr. GOODLATTE. I thank the gentleman for yielding, and I strongly 
support his amendment.
  Madam Chair, title III of the ALERRT Act makes important reforms to 
assure that agencies identify whether their new regulations will have 
significant adverse effects on small businesses. One of the most 
important adverse effects is to identify whether

[[Page H1995]]

these new regulations will make it harder for small businesses to 
obtain credit.
  Small businesses create the majority of the new jobs in our economy, 
yet without access to credit, how can they do that? How can they even 
survive? The gentleman's amendment makes sure that agencies do identify 
whether new regulations will make it harder for a substantial number of 
small businesses to obtain credit. It is a reform that is long overdue 
and especially important as our country struggles to achieve a real and 
durable job recovery.
  I thank the gentleman for his amendment and urge my colleagues to 
support it.
  Mr. RIGELL. Madam Chair, I yield back the balance of my time.
  The Acting CHAIR. The question is on the amendment offered by the 
gentleman from Virginia (Mr. Rigell).
  The amendment was agreed to.


                 Amendment No. 6 Offered by Mr. Tipton

  The Acting CHAIR. It is now in order to consider amendment No. 6 
printed in House Report 113-361.
  Mr. TIPTON. Madam Chairman, I have an amendment at the desk.
  The Acting CHAIR. The Clerk will designate the amendment.
  The text of the amendment is as follows:

       Page 66, line 1, strike ``The agency'' and insert ``Each 
     year, each agency''.
  The Acting CHAIR. Pursuant to House Resolution 487, the gentleman 
from Colorado (Mr. Tipton) and a Member opposed each will control 5 
minutes.
  The Chair recognizes the gentleman from Colorado.
  Mr. TIPTON. Madam Chairman, I would like to thank Chairman Graves and 
Chairman Goodlatte for all of their work.
  I yield myself as much time as I may consume.
  Madam Chairman, I rise today in support of my amendment to title III, 
the Regulatory Flexibility Improvements Act, which will ensure that a 
requirement under current law, the Regulatory Flexibility Act, or RFA, 
remains intact.
  As the 1970s came to a close, Congress took note of the challenges 
that small businesses were facing. They were struggling to run their 
businesses while complying with an increasing number of complicated 
regulations. This led to the passage of the Regulatory Flexibility Act 
of 1980, which was designed to improve agency rulemaking. Under 
statute, the Federal Government agencies looking to regulate the 
private sector must evaluate the costs of doing so on small businesses, 
and where the costs are found to be significant, seek less burdensome 
alternatives to their proposed actions.
  A key piece of the RFA is section 610, the ``look-back'' provision, 
which requires agencies to periodically evaluate the necessity of every 
existing regulation that has ``significant'' economic impact on a 
substantial number of small businesses and determine whether those 
regulations should be amended or rescinded to minimize burdens on small 
businesses. As a part of the section 610 review process, agencies must 
annually publish the list of regulations they plan to review in the 
Federal Register. This amendment makes a technical correction to the 
text of title III to ensure this current annual publication requirement 
remains in place. It is an entirely appropriate exercise for the 
agencies to review old regulations and weed out ones that are outdated, 
ineffective, or overly burdensome.
  Ten years is a lifetime in terms of our private sector's ability to 
radically transform marketplaces. Reviewing the actual impacts of 
existing regulations every 10 years just makes sense. Understanding 
real-world consequences of a regulation on small businesses and taking 
into account changes in other areas of Federal, State, or local law 
that may affect the necessity of the regulations are just a few of the 
reasons that make these reviews absolutely essential.
  The regulatory burden for small businesses has not lightened since 
the passage of RFA. In fact, agencies have been so busy issuing new 
regulations that they have sometimes failed to comply with already 
existing requirements to annually publish their list of regulations to 
be reviewed and then to review them. This simply isn't acceptable.
  This amendment will relieve Federal agencies of any ambiguity as to 
whether or not this annual publication requirement still exists and 
ensure that small businesses can continue to make their voices heard 
after a regulation has become implemented.
  I urge Members to vote ``yes'' on this amendment, and I reserve the 
balance of my time.
  Mr. JOHNSON of Georgia. Madam Chairman, I claim the time in 
opposition to the amendment, though I am in support of this amendment.
  The Acting CHAIR. Without objection, the gentleman is recognized for 
5 minutes.
  There was no objection.
  Mr. JOHNSON of Georgia. It is to my horror that I would agree to this 
amendment, but it simply corrects a drafting error. So we do not oppose 
this amendment. It makes a thoroughly flawed bill slightly less 
thoroughly flawed.
  With that, I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. TIPTON. Madam Chair, I thank the gentleman for his support of 
this amendment. It speaks to a very important point. We have got to 
make sure that the agencies are actually doing what the law is 
requiring. This clarification simply achieves that.
  Mr. GOODLATTE. Will the gentleman yield?
  Mr. TIPTON. I yield to the gentleman from Virginia.
  Mr. GOODLATTE. I support his commonsense amendment and urge my 
colleagues to join in making it unanimous.
  Mr. TIPTON. Madam Chair, I yield back the balance of my time.
  The Acting CHAIR. The question is on the amendment offered by the 
gentleman from Colorado (Mr. Tipton).
  The amendment was agreed to.
  Mr. GOODLATTE. Madam Chairman, I move that the Committee do now rise.
  The motion was agreed to.
  Accordingly, the Committee rose; and the Speaker pro tempore (Mr. 
Tipton) having assumed the chair, Ms. Ros-Lehtinen, Acting Chair of the 
Committee of the Whole House on the state of the Union, reported that 
that Committee, having had under consideration the bill (H.R. 2804) to 
amend title 5, United States Code, to require the Administrator of the 
Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs to publish information 
about rules on the Internet, and for other purposes, had come to no 
resolution thereon.

                          ____________________