Twice a year, federal agencies publicly list their anticipated regulatory actions for the near- and long-term. Known as the Spring 2021 Unified Agenda of Regulatory and Deregulatory Actions, the extensive listing covers agencies from the EPA and OSHA to the Peace Corps and Railroad Retirement Commission. For industry, the Unified Agenda provides us insights into what the government has in store for you.
According to the Agenda, OSHA in October will issue a Request for Information to engage stakeholders in developing a rule related to “Heat Illness Prevention in Outdoor and Indoor Work Settings.” This will follow OSHA’s recent emphasis and release of new posters on heat awareness. OSHA in September 2021 also plans to issue a final rule titled “National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants for Major Sources: Industrial, Commercial, and Institutional Boilers and Process Heaters.” The Department of Labor will also make changes to the injury and illness electronic filing system, hold a hearing on hazard communications and issue a new infectious-disease standard for safe workspaces. The EPA is no slouch when it comes to regulating businesses, revealing 127 regulatory actions on the latest Spring 2021 Unified Agenda.
The CATO Institute’s 10,000 Commandments project, which that tracks federal regulatory activity, identified 86,356 pages of federal regulations, rules and notices published in 2020. Their recent report stated the regulatory burden at $1.9 trillion annually, roughly the size of the latest COVID relief bill. Through July 16, 2021, federal agencies have already released 37,826 pages, with 1,732 final rules and another 1,109 proposed. With release of this Agenda, the agencies have given us some insight into what, or rather who, is on their regulatory menu.