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Yesterday, the Wisconsin Legislature made history when the State Assembly passed Assembly Bill 42, the Regulation from the Executive in Need of Scrutiny Act, commonly referred to as the REINS Act. This legislation, which has already been approved by the state Senate, now heads to Gov. Scott Walker’s desk, will provide much-needed protection from costly and onerous new regulations. The REINS Act requires any new regulation with an economic impact over $10 million to receive signoff from the legislature.

Co-authors Sen. Devin LeMahieu (R-Oostburg) and Rep. Adam Neylon (R-Pewaukee) modeled their pro-growth bill on similar legislation first introduced at the federal level in 2011 by then-Senator Jim DeMint (R-S.C.) The federal version of the REINS Act, which has been passed by the U.S. House of Representative multiples times only to stall in the Senate, would subject all federal regulations with an economic impact greater than $100 million to Congressional approval. The federal REINS Act was most recently passed by the U.S. House in January of this year, and its Senate companion, sponsored by Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) was approved by the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee last month.

In a statement issued following passage of Wisconsin’s REINS Act, Sen. LeMahieu explained how enactment of the REINS Act is going to make the Badger State a more attractive place to live, work, do business, and invest:

“State agencies currently have the power to pass harmful regulations with little oversight from the legislature that can cost Wisconsin businesses and citizens tens of millions of dollars in compliance and lost revenue. The REINS Act improves transparency in the rule making process and gives the legislature more power to hold unelected bureaucrats accountable.”

Gov. Scott Walker is expected to sign the REINS Act into law, as this landmark regulatory reform was included in the executive budget he rolled out earlier this year.

“The cost of the federal regulations is now greater than personal and corporate income tax collections combined. Though Washington has been unable to control regulations, Wisconsin has now made clear that they can and will. The REINS Act–blocked by special interests in Washington–can be enacted in Wisconsin to reduce the costs and delays of overregulation,” said Grover Norquist, president of Americans for Tax Reform. “By becoming the first state to pass a state version of the REINS Act, Wisconsin will further solidify its reputation as one of the nation’s top government reforming states. This should serve as inspiration for the U.S. Senate to follow Wisconsin’s lead and send the federal version of the REINS Act to President Trump’s desk. 


Photo Credit: beautifulcataya