The U.S. business community has vociferously complained about the burden it faces dealing with a rising tide of regulations from Washington. Regulations are a political punching bag in the Republican primaries because they supposedly represent know-nothing bureaucrats trying to hinder hard-working Americans.
“What really would help if you’re not going to do the major stimulus would be to reduce regulations and to at least allow the economy to grow and not layer on additional regulations and restrictions, which we seem to be getting month after month,” Daniel J. Meckstroth, chief economist for the Manufacturers Alliance, said at an economic forum in Washington last month.
“If we could have a moratorium on regulations in the non-financial sector, that would be a big help,” he said.
Republicans have characterized the Obama administration as overzealous in trying to implement a raft of “job-killing” regulations since the moment it got in office. Gov. Rick Perry of Texas recently said he’d get rid of the departments of Commerce, Education and one other he couldn’t quite remember.
Health care legislation was the mother of all mandates and most businesses do not like the extra costs they now will be responsible for.
The trucking industry fears that the Department of Transportation is poised to roll back the daily duty time for drivers by an hour, ostensibly for safety reasons, and force motor carriers to add drivers and trucks to move the same amount of freight. The government estimates the rule will cost industry more than $1 billion.
The DOT is also considering a rule that would add cost and complexity to transporting lithium batteries on aircraft by treating them as full hazardous materials, resulting in new packaging, documentation, training and other procedures, as well as limiting them to cargo compartments that are crew accessible or equipped with a fire suppression system.
House Republicans recently criticized the Senate for failing to act...... To read this entire Washington Notebook commentary click here