According to a newly released study, the Obama administration pushed through $24.8 billion in new regulations during its final 16 days in office, or $1.55 billion per day.
By way of contrast, the Trump team passed $5.8 billion for the entire year, or $16.8 million per day.
“The trend of regulatory activity shifted dramatically in 2017 once President Trump assumed the presidency,” said Dan Bosch, American Action Forum director of regulatory policy, and research analyst Dan Goldbeck, the authors of the study.
They added, “In fact, 81 percent of all regulatory costs finalized in 2017 came during former President Barack Obama’s final weeks in office.”
American Action Forum reported 7 of the 10 costliest regulations implemented during the year were by the Obama administration. They covered matters such as energy standards, banking requirements, and rules regarding Medicare and Medicaid home healthcare agencies.
Meanwhile, 8 of the top 10 biggest savings in regulations in 2017 came due to actions taken by the Trump administration.
The New York Times reported that President Donald Trump declared rolling back regulations will be a defining theme of his administration, starting with signing an executive order 11 days after taking office on “Reducing Regulation and Controlling Regulatory Costs.”
The order required two regulations to be removed from the Federal Register for every new one added. Trump reported last month that his administration had exceeded that goal by a country mile taking away 22 regulations for every new one.
According to the Competitive Enterprise Institute, the Federal Register of rules and regulations is at its lowest page count in a quarter century.
The calendar year concluded with the Register numbering 61,950 pages, down 35 percent from the all-time record set under President Obama last year of 95,894 pages.
The last time the Register was at its current level was 1993.
“We have spent the past dozen years or longer operating in environments that have had an increasing regulatory burden,” said Michael Burke, the chairman and chief executive of Aecom, a Los Angeles-based multinational consulting firm that specializes in infrastructure projects. “That burden has slowed economic growth, it’s slowed down investment in infrastructure. And what we’ve seen over the last year is a big deregulatory environment.”
On Thursday, Trump tied the record rise in the stock market, which has gone up 36 percent since he took office, to creating a more favorable business climate. “Big cuts in unnecessary regulations continuing,” he promised.
“The National Association of Manufacturers’ fourth quarter member survey found that fewer than half of manufacturers cited an ‘unfavorable business climate’ — including regulations and taxes — as a challenge to their business, down from nearly three-quarters a year ago,” according to The Times.
In fact, nearly 95 percent of respondents said they are positive about their company’s future, which is the highest level on record over the survey’s 20-year history.
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