New regulations czar to get right on that backlog of regulations

posted at 11:01 am on August 11, 2013 by Jazz Shaw

Howard Shelanski may not be a name that exactly rolls off the tongue, but since finding his desk at the White House Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA), he’s apparently been a busy guy. I’ve never been exactly clear on the specific scope of powers – or even the purpose, for that matter – of the OIRA. In the current era, it seems to be either a fast track runway for the EPA whitewash efforts to curtail unpopular forms of energy production, or a place where efforts to rein in oppressive regulation go to die. But as The Hill reports, Shelanski is at least trying to put a good face on things and stay busy.

Howard Shelanski has been quickly thrust into the mounting debate over efforts to curb climate change and has emerged as the face of the president’s initiative to cut away regulatory red tape.

In just his first month on the job, he has testified on behalf of the administration at multiple congressional hearings on one end of Pennsylvania Avenue, met with business and labor groups to discuss new rules at the other and has started reaching out to the public to highlight the White House’s efforts.

To “highlight the White House’s efforts” to the public? Is this supposed to be a functional agency to evaluate regulations or a public relations office for the President’s agenda? Mr. Shelanski sat down recently with the American Petroleum Institute to discuss the disaster which is the Renewable Fuels Standard. (Disclosure.. I’ve done a fair bit of consulting with API in the past.) They came away with some polite words about how nice it was for the czar to take time out to talk with them, but nothing concrete beyond that.

The key point where the White House seems to want to put lipstick on this pig is the President’s claim that he’s actively looking to eliminate useless and expensive red tape in the regulatory process. Shelanski is hanging on to that one like a life preserver.

On Thursday, he penned his first post on the White House blog in support of institutionalizing a government-wide regulatory “lookback.”

“Review of existing regulations is a crucial part of ensuring that protecting our nation’s health, safety, and environment remains consistent with creating jobs and prosperity,” he wrote.

“This Administration will expand and further institutionalize our regulatory lookback efforts to ensure that we continue to identify rules that need to be modified, streamlined, or repealed.”

I’m not sure what this “lookback” is supposed to entail, but to date it doesn’t seem to involve doing away with or stopping any of the EPA’s rampage over job creation in the energy industry. Color me dubious, but all of this looks like little more than window dressing on the existing agenda in DC.


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How many czars do we need?

OmahaConservative on August 11, 2013 at 11:08 AM

Howard Shelanski Shellackski

FIFY

Shy Guy on August 11, 2013 at 11:10 AM

King Barry, “creating one job” at a time.

GarandFan on August 11, 2013 at 11:12 AM

They will look back and see what regulations aren’t damaging America enough and then get right on the job to tighten them up so they do maximum damage. Green will be their preference and manufacturing close behind. Maybe look at how to make churches angry will need looking into.

Herb on August 11, 2013 at 11:25 AM

He’s just another unelected bureaucratic hack put in place to do things Congress won’t do to satisfy the God-King.

RebeccaH on August 11, 2013 at 11:37 AM

If King Barky the Incompetent is doing it, it is bad.

That. Is. All.

jukin3 on August 11, 2013 at 11:39 AM

This guy.

Bmore on August 11, 2013 at 11:43 AM

Such a joke.

petefrt on August 11, 2013 at 11:50 AM

If the constitutional law professor was serious about this, he’d ask Congress for a constitutional amendment putting sunset dates on all laws and regulations and institute zero-based budgeting. The GOP House would have that over to the Senate in a heartbeat and then we’d see what Dingy Harry was made of.

Kafir on August 11, 2013 at 12:34 PM

F’ing Bush and his RINO Congress gave us the Energy Policy Act of 2005 wherein the Renewable Fuel Standard entered our lives and began to metastasize.

exdeadhead on August 11, 2013 at 12:49 PM

Maybe legal historians here might be able to tell us when it was in the US that the executive was permitted to write regulations that came to have the force of law?

The legislation passed by representatives is now only a part of the coercive power of the state.

The Founders probably expected the laws to be those voted on by congress and signed by the president. As it stands, we seem to have accepted that regulators can write any “law” they want with very little accountability. Leftists love this because it is “by any means necessary”, but the rest of the country should see that the public actions of legislators are now something of a side-show.

This story about energy regulation is more tacit acceptance that Washington does not need the consent of the people to do anything.

virgo on August 11, 2013 at 1:05 PM

Everybody keeps on misspelling “commissar”.

Steve Eggleston on August 11, 2013 at 1:21 PM

regulations that are founded at public expense are instituted not so much to cultivate men’s natural abilities as to restrain them.

roflmmfao

donabernathy on August 11, 2013 at 1:39 PM

…the most important question!…is he another Harvard appointee?

KOOLAID2 on August 11, 2013 at 2:01 PM

On Thursday, he (Howard Shelanski) penned his first post on the White House blog in support of institutionalizing a government-wide regulatory “lookback.”

Julian Hattem and Ben Goad, TheHill.com, 08/11/13 06:00 AM

.
Hey, Howard ! ….. no big hurry with that.
Just take your time with it, and be ‘accurate.’
If it takes four years to finish, no biggie.
.

I’m not sure what this “lookback” is supposed to entail, but to date it doesn’t seem to involve doing away with or stopping any of the EPA’s rampage over job creation in the energy industry.

Jazz Shaw, Aug 11, 2013, 11:01 am

.Have patience, I’m sure they’ll get right on that …..
.

Color me dubious, but all of this looks like little more than window dressing on the existing agenda in DC.

Jazz Shaw, Aug 11, 2013, 11:01 am

.
Cynic !

listens2glenn on August 11, 2013 at 2:04 PM