Source: United States Senator for Oklahoma James Lankford
Lankford Advocates for an easy online process for Americans to provide feedback on proposed federal rules
WASHINGTON, DC – The Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs (HSGAC) Subcommittee on Regulatory Affairs and Federal Management, under the chairmanship of Senator James Lankford (R-OK) today held a joint hearing with the HSGAC Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations (PSI) entitled “Review of E-Rulemaking Comment System.” The hearing follows PSI issuing a bipartisan report on the abuse of online regulatory comment systems. Lankford supports efforts to make the online comment system more user-friendly.
“With 21st-century technology, every American should be able to easily participate in the federal rulemaking process online,” said Lankford. “I’m grateful to partner with Chairman Portman as we examine how federal agencies can simplify the notice and comment online system by making websites user-friendly, removing spam, and providing clear instructions. Recognizing agencies should engage the public early in the rulemaking process, Senator Sinema and I introduced the Early Participation in Regulation Act to require federal agencies to provide advance notice of major rules. Solutions such as these are what we need to remove roadblocks that prohibit Americans from providing their vital feedback.”
In May, Lankford and Senator Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ) introduced the Early Participation in Regulations Act to direct agencies to issue advanced notices of proposed rulemaking for rules costing more than $100 million annually. Agencies must outline the problem the rule intends to solve and listen to the public’s input on the subject. The bill passed out of the full HSGAC Committee in June with bipartisan support.
Lankford and Sinema held a hearing this past May entitled, “From Beginning to End: An Examination of Agencies Early Public Engagement and Retrospective Review.” The hearing examined how agencies create regulatory schemes, the need for early public engagement, and the ways agencies measure the success of regulations. Former Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs Administrators Susan Dudley and Sally Katzen served as witnesses and endorsed legislation introduced by Lankford and Sinema that would require both advanced notices of proposed rulemaking and retrospective review of regulations.