Sen. Rick Scott Leads Colleagues in Bill to Reduce Unnecessary Government Regulations

September 2, 2021

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Senator Rick Scott, joined by Senators Thom Tillis, Tom Cotton, Jim Risch, Roger Marshall, Mike Crapo, Josh Hawley, Bill Hagerty, Steve Daines, Ron Johnson, James Lankford, Mike Braun, Ted Cruz, Joni Ernst, Roger Wicker, John Cornyn and Cynthia Lummis, announced the reintroduction of the Unnecessary Agency Regulations Reduction Act to reduce burdensome government regulations and more efficiently dispose of outdated, duplicative or unnecessary agency regulations. This legislation will create a mechanism to eliminate multiple regulations originating from federal executive branch agencies in a joint resolution. Representative Byron Donalds introduced the companion bill in the House of Representatives.


The Unnecessary Agency Regulations Reduction Act is endorsed by Heritage Action for America, the National Federation of Independent Business, FreedomWorks, R Street Institute, Americans for Prosperity, National Taxpayers Union, Competitive Enterprise Institute and Americans for Tax Reform.


Senator Rick Scott said, “During my eight years as Governor of Florida, we cut more than 5,000 burdensome regulations to remove unnecessary government red tape and allow businesses to thrive. Our hard work helped Florida businesses create more than 1.7 million new jobs for families across the state and the Unnecessary Regulations Reduction Act helps bring Florida’s success to the nation. As we saw in Florida, reducing burdensome government regulations aids with economic growth by creating more efficiency in the federal government and making Washington work better for the American people. As Joe Biden and Democrats push a radical, socialist agenda with reckless tax-and-spending plans that fuel inflation, I’ll never stop working to protect taxpayer dollars of hardworking families and rein in wasteful spending.”


Garrett Bess, Vice President of Government Relations and Communications, Heritage Action for America, said, “Burdensome regulations created by unelected bureaucrats kill jobs and reduce workers’ wages. Senator Rick Scott’s legislation reduces regulatory overreach by forcing the executive branch to annually identify and eliminate duplicative and unnecessary regulations, which will create a more favorable environment for economic growth in the United States.” 


Kevin Kuhlman, Vice President of Federal Government Relations at the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB), said, “Unnecessary and burdensome regulation coming out of Washington has long been a major small business problem. Simply put, small businesses lack the resources, compliance departments, and legal help to navigate the modern regulatory environment. This is holding back the small business economy and hurting small business competitiveness. Senator Scott’s legislation, the Unnecessary Agency Regulations Reduction Act, would go a long way to reforming the broken regulatory process and rolling back burdens on small businesses. NFIB appreciates his important work on this issue.”


Adam Brandon, President of FreedomWorks, said, “Decades of outdated regulations continue to pile on top of each other and plague our country. It is unconscionable for Congress not to act in the swiftest manner possible to get unnecessary, redundant, and burdensome regulations out of the way. We applaud Sen. Scott’s legislation to streamline the process of eliminating regulations and make cutting red tape a priority for all congresses and administrations.”


Jonathan Bydlak, Director of the Governance Program, R Street Institute, said “The Unnecessary Agency Regulations Reduction Act is a commonsense bill that would help reduce burdensome regulations smartly and expeditiously. Our experience during the COVID-19 pandemic showed how duplicative and outdated regulations can hinder economic growth and private sector solutions to pressing problems. It is critical that we extend the progress made over the last year and work to reassess and eliminate regulations that are no longer necessary, especially those that disproportionately impact Americans who continue to struggle. This bill would do exactly that and we are thrilled to offer our support for this critical effort.”


Brent Gardiner, Vice President, Chief Government Affairs Officer, Americans for Prosperity, said, “The COVID-19 pandemic has presented Americans with a vivid lesson in the costs of regulation. The Unnecessary Agency Regulations Reduction Act will help clear the mountain of unnecessary, outdated, and burdensome red tape to ensure we’re better prepared in the future. This important bill adopts common sense reforms so the federal government prioritizes policies that make us more resilient, nimble, and innovative.”


Andrew Lautz, Director of Federal Policy, National Taxpayers Union, said, "Overlapping or over burdensome regulations disadvantage countless Americans, but especially entrepreneurs and small business owners across the country looking to provide for themselves and for their families. Senator Rick Scott's Unnecessary Agency Regulations Reduction Act would create a sensible, dedicated process for eliminating duplicative or harmful regulations, involving key stakeholders in both the legislative and executive branches throughout the process. National Taxpayers Union is proud to support this deregulatory effort from Senator Scott.”


Ryan Young, Senior Fellow, Competitive Enterprise Institute, said, “As we emerge from the COVID-19 pandemic, America needs both short-term recovery and long-term resilience. The Unnecessary Agency Regulations Reduction Act contributes to both. Right now, a regulatory housecleaning will help new businesses start up more smoothly, and help existing businesses hire employees and grow back. Going forward, regular pruning of redundant, obsolete, and burdensome rules will help keep agencies and businesses resilient against the next crisis.”


Grover Norquist, President of Americans for Tax Reform, said, "Regulations cost the U.S. economy nearly $2 trillion a year, meaning that 12% of our entire economy is spent on regulation compliance. Many of these regulations are put on the books and are never questioned again, leading to an immense amount of outdated, futile, and burdensome regulations that stifle economic growth and job creation. Senator Rick Scott’s Unnecessary Agency Regulations Reduction Act will help address this problem by creating a review mechanism to eliminate burdensome regulations. This is an important piece of legislation that will provide important regulatory relief for American families and businesses across the country.” 


The Unnecessary Agency Regulations Reduction Act of 2021 would create the following process:

  • Beginning two years after enactment, the Administrator of the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA) will annually—
    • Compile and maintain a list of all planned agency major rules or sets of major rules for the period covered by the submission; and
    • Compile a list of outdated, duplicative or burdensome agency regulations to consolidate or repeal.
  • OIRA will also consider GAO’s Duplication Overlap and Fragmentation (DOF) annual audit of programs to identify any duplicative, outdated, or burdensome regulations associated with the programs, agencies, offices, and initiatives identified in their report.
  • The OIRA Administrator will include the list of major rules in each of the President’s Unified Agenda of Federal Regulatory and Deregulatory Actions reports.
  • No later than 30 days after the OIRA Administrator submits the list of major rules to Congress, each appropriate congressional committee shall review and then compile the final list of regulations to consolidate or repeal into a single joint resolution.
  • This legislation is tied to the Congressional Review Act, which requires the measure to receive expedited consideration in each house of Congress.