UPDATED 6:13 AM PT — Thurs. July 5, 2018
Congress is working on a plan to help local governments by rolling back rules and regulations passed without providing funding.
In an effort spearheaded by North Carolina Representative Virginia Foxx, Republicans are expected to attack unfunded mandates next week.
23-years after the movement began, GOP representatives will try to rein in federal rules and regulations that can cost local companies and governments millions.
They plan to update the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995 to get rid of loopholes that allowed the government to put in place costly rules without studying their impact.
For example, in 2017 it cost Tennessee $32 million to adhere to the Clean Water Act, but the EPA only provided the state with eight-percent of the funding. This happened despite senators warning of the possibility a year before.
“We have to make sure that federal mandates don’t force communities to spend hundreds of millions of dollars for projects that may have little impact on water quality,” said North Carolina Senator Jim Inhofe.
The new act will require all major rules to be scrutinized for lost revenue as well as the cost to implement the rule. It also forces Congress to look at the impact regulations have on the private sector.
Foxx has introduced the bill several times over the past few years, and it passed the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee in March on a partisan vote.
This could mean it would have difficulty passing the Senate, but it will also show Republicans are trying to save companies and local governments from costly federal oversight.