Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Senate OKs Bill To Allow General Assembly To Kill Regulations By Doing Nothing

The Senate Tuesday voted 29 to 20, largely along party-lines, to pass Senate Bill 561 (Disanto-R- Dauphin) which allows the General Assembly to kill state regulations by doing nothing.
The bill requires an up or down vote by the General Assembly on every final regulation approved by the Independent Regulatory Review Commission, if that regulation has a fiscal impact of $1 million or more.
If no action is taken, the final regulation would be deemed disapproved and cannot take effect.
Under the legislation, the estimated cost of a regulation must be verified by the Independent Fiscal Office.  There is no requirement the benefits of the regulation be calculated or compared to the cost.
Groups like the PA Environmental Council have opposed the legislation saying Pennsylvania already has one of the most robust regulatory review processes in the United States with multiple opportunities for stakeholders and the General Assembly to influence the content of regulation, including having members of the Senate and House sitting on the Environmental Quality Board that adopts DEP’s regulations.
The Council also raised a concern about the constitutionality of Senate Bill 561 with respect to separation of powers of the legislative and executive branches of government.
The bill now goes to the House for action.   A Senate Fiscal Note and summary is available.
(Photo: French Reign Of Terror, circa 1793-94.)

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