Category Archives: Rules Review

Legislative review may be up to voters

A bill pending in Texas requires agencies to wait before adopting rules until the appropriate standing committee of each house reviews the rules. Under present law the legislature is limited to sending agencies a statement supporting or opposing adoption of a rule. The new legislative review authority, if adopted by the legislature, is contingent upon voters approving a constitutional amendment to provide for legislative review of rules.
H.J.R. 88

HB 1850


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Filed under Rules Review

SB 1339 – relating to administrative rules

“Any agency final rule that has an impact on the private sector in this state is repealed from and after December 31, 2012”
See bill:
(Posted Jan. 28, 2011)

SB 1339 (Administrative rules; repeal; legislative action) – SB 1339 Failed in the Senate third read March 14, 2011, with a 11-17-2 vote.
(Updated March 15, 2011)

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Filed under Rules Review, State Rulemaking

Regulatory Review Report Card and Recommendations

The Institute for Policy Integrity at the New York University School of Law has released a 459-page report entitled 52 Experiments with Regulatory Review:  The Political and Economic Inputs into State Rulemakings.  The report, authored by Jason A Schwartz, recognizes the impact of government regulation on the economy and argues that “systems of economic analysis and regulatory review are needed so that the costs and benefits of action are properly weighted.”

In describing the report, the web site at the Institute for Policy Integrity says,

Nearly twenty percent of the American economy is regulated by state governments.  But there are major concerns about how regulatory decisions are made.  Although states routinely regulate industries whose economic footprints climb into the hundreds of millions of dollars, these rules are often made ad hoc, risking inefficient results that limit public benefit.

After more than a year of research, surveys, and analysis, Policy Integrity is the first to compile the regulatory practices of all fifty states (plus D.C. and Puerto Rico) in one document.  Comparing each set of laws and guidelines on paper to direct feedback from leaders on the ground, the report assigns states a grade based on an evaluation of the quality of their review process.   The results of “52 Experiments with Regulatory Review,” which finds significant flaws with state level regulatory review, indicate that billions of dollars and important environmental and public health protections are at risk.  States earned an average grade of “D+” with the lowest possible grade being a “D-.”

The full report is available from the Institute for Policy Integrity at

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Filed under Administrative Law, Executive Oversight, Fiscal Impact, Legislative Oversight, Rules Review, State Rulemaking

Beyond Rules Review

Senator Howard Stephenson, co-chair of Utah’s legislative Administrative Rules Review Committee, is sponsoring a bill to enlarge the role of the committee in new ways.  S.B. 64, entitled “Administrative Rules Review Committee,” expands the authority of the committee to include the review of “any appropriation made by the Legislature … to ensure that the entity to which the funds were appropriated complies with any expressed legislative intent concerning the appropriation.”  Under the provisions of the bill, the Committee reports its findings of noncompliance to the Legislature’s Executive Appropriations Committee.  The bill does not authorize any other direct action by the Administrative Rules Review Committee.

Utah created its Administrative Rules Review Committee in 1983.   The ten-member legislative committee currently has authority to review proposed and effective administrative rules and to prepare omnibus legislation to reauthorize administrative rules every year (see H.B. 197 for this year’s reauthorization bill).  More information about Utah’s Administrative Rules Review Committee is available at

UPDATE — 3/12/2009 — S.B. 64 encountered opposition in the House due to concerns that the additional authority to review appropriations (expenditures) would diminish the Administrative Rules Review Committee’s focus on administrative rules.   Rep. Ben Ferry, House Chair of the Administrative Rules Review Committee, sponsored H.J.R. 23, amending joint legislative rules, giving the authority to review appropriations directly to the Legislature’s Executive Appropriations Committee.

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Filed under Legislative Oversight, Rules Review, State Rulemaking