Share This Page

On regulatory 'autopilot': Anchors on the economy

| Wednesday, Dec. 11, 2013, 9:00 p.m.

Adding to the struggling economy's burdens, the Obama administration plans to impose new regulations in 2014 that will cost the private sector $143.3 billion, according to the American Action Forum (AAF).

The Washington Free Beacon reports that the administration's “unified agenda” lists “regulations for 2014 from Obamacare, the EPA, Department of Energy, and others, revealing a regulatory system on ‘autopilot.'” The pace of these rules' finalization will affect their economic impact, but they're sure to deal a significant blow.

“Regulations, more or less, operate like hidden taxes,” says Sam Batkins, AAF director of regulatory policy. He estimates that the costs of 2013's new federal rules will total more than $110 billion and that upcoming regulations' impact will be far worse in 2014.

Among what's in store are 15 new “major” rules costing at least $100 million each. There's an EPA rule mandating lower sulfur levels in gasoline that will cost $35 billion and ObamaCare regs costing $1.9 billion, including a Department of Health and Human Services rule requiring that all grocery-store items carry calorie labels. Compliance with just the latter rule will cost an estimated $421.3 billion — and 10 million hours.

Expect the private sector to pass these costs along to consumers whenever it can. But it will be the “government knows best” Obama administration that further saps the economy's vitality, hindering job creation and discouraging the entrepreneurial spirit with regulatory dead weight.

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.