2012 has been an average year for regulations, but it may end up
with far more than usual.
Young, fellow in regulatory studies at the Competitive Enterprise
Institute (CEI), reports that as of December 3, 2012, 3,392
final rules have been published in the Federal
"That's roughly on par with an average year, although … in the
last few weeks we've seen a little bit of a midnight rush
post-election while Congress is in its lame-duck session," Young
notes. "There are about 70 to 80 rules published in an average
week. Last week, there were 94, and this week, as of Tuesday, we're
already up to 33."
So he suggests the country could end up with as many as 3,800
final regulations this year.
"It really does affect everything, but it affects the energy
industry -- power plants that are powered by coal -- most
severely," the CEI regulatory studies fellow explains. "In the next
few months, EPA is going to pass regulations that will essentially
make it impossible to open a new coal-fired power plant. It's good
if you're a natural gas company, but it's very bad if you're a coal
Meanwhile, Young puts the total cost of federal regulation,
meaning everything that's on the books, at about $1.8 trillion.
"The trouble is that a lot of times agencies don't report what
their regulations cost," he tells OneNewsNow. "They don't have to
unless they're classified as being 'significant,' and that's only
about ten percent of rules. That number is about $24 billion for 46
All things considered, Young concludes that some rules are good
and some are bad. He is "just giving the numbers."
Impact of regs on food service industry
As for ObamaCare, it has been discovered that it
includes regulations that target certain classifications
within the food industry. A conservative commentator says they
will cost business owners billions to implement.
Restaurant and grocery store operators are about to get hit hard
due to President Barack Obama's 2,700-page Patient Protection and
Affordable Care Act. Section 4205 forces labeling regulations on
operators, which the FDA has taken and expanded even further.
Amy Ridenour, chairman of The National
Center Public Policy Research, points out that pizza makers
will especially be impacted, as they will be forced to detail
calorie and nutritional information about every product.
"They actually want a list of every possible combination a
person could order and the ingredients listed for that," Ridenour
explains. "And Domino's alone says that there are 34 million
potential combinations of their pizzas -- that would be a sign
that's 34 million items long. It's just not doable."
While Ridenour understands the motivation is to provide
nutritional information, she warns that the regulations are bad for
business owners and consumers.
"You're going to be in a situation where a business says
well, if I change my recipe, it's going to cost me a fortune in
signage, so they won't," the commentator poses. "So consumers
will have fewer choices. Nobody's better off, but that's not what
the regulators realize. They're just thinking [with] tunnel
The White House Office of Management and Budget estimates that
the paperwork burden on supermarkets and grocery stores will
require nearly 15 million man-hours and $69.8 million for
recordkeeping alone to comply with the new FDA labeling rules.