Trump's Regulatory Relief Executive Order Will Get Americans Safely Back To Work

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Posted by Tom Hebert on Wednesday, May 20th, 2020, 6:23 PM PERMALINK

On Tuesday, President Trump issued an executive order that will help Americans safely return to work by directing agencies to slash the red tape that inhibits economic growth.

As the focus turns towards restarting the economy, Trump’s new deregulatory executive order will give businesses the flexibility they need to safely reopen and create jobs.

Specifically, the order directs agencies to identify and rescind red tape on business in order to promote job creation and economic growth. The EO authorizes agencies to use the same emergency authority that they have used to fight the Coronavirus to waive regulations that stand in the way of our post-pandemic economic recovery.

ATR President Grover Norquist praised the executive order:

“President Trump’s executive order to slash red tape and directing all agencies to use their emergency powers to ‘rescind or temporarily waive damaging regulations’ is key to recovery. 

President Trump and the Republican congress brought us strong growth, job creation and increasing wages by reducing taxes and the regulatory burden.

We can return America to prosperity the same way.

The Democrat congress opposes tax reduction, but President Trump is leading on executive orders reducing the cost and unnecessary delays caused by overregulation.

President Trump’s drive for more deregulation—first to fight the virus and second to restore growth — is moving full speed ahead.”

Trump’s new EO also directs agencies not to over-enforce when American businesses are clearly working in good faith to follow the law and keep their workers and customers safe. The pandemic has put businesses in an extraordinarily difficult spot – not only are they struggling to keep the lights on and pay their employees, they must contend with rapidly-changing information to best protect the people they serve and employ. This provision mitigates the threat of an overzealous bureaucrat coming down on a business that is doing the best they can to keep people safe.

The EO establishes a “Regulatory Bill Of Rights,” a set of 10 regulatory principles that agencies will follow in the enforcement process to provide fairness to businesses that are reopening. This set of principles, which direct agencies to be fair and transparent in enforcing against any violations of law, will give businesses confidence as they begin to reopen their doors.

Finally, the EO directs agencies to review the impact of any regulations that they have waived or suspended during the pandemic and determine if they are necessary to reinstate. Permanently repealing these regulations – most of which were never necessary in the first place – will help grow our economy long after the pandemic has run its course.

Instead of using the pandemic as an excuse to consolidate more power in the federal government’s hands, the Trump Administration has made deregulation the centerpiece of its Coronavirus response. State and local governments have wisely followed suit, leading to the temporary suspension of over 500 rules and regulations as the pandemic runs its course.

Americans for Tax Reform has kept a running list of these suspended regulations, which you can view by clicking here.

Regulatory relief on the federal level has streamlined our national response to the Coronavirus. For example:

  • The FDA has given states the power to allow their laboratories to develop COVID-19 diagnostics and testing. This step waives the requirement of labs pursuing Emergency Use Authorization from the FDA, allowing states to take the responsibility for tests and diagnostics used within their borders.
     
  • The Department of Transportation has exempted commercial truck drivers transporting emergency medical supplies from regulations limiting how many hours they can drive. This rule change gave needed flexibility to drivers that transport goods like necessary medical supplies, testing equipment, hand sanitizer, disinfectants and food required for emergency restocking of stores.
     
  • The Trump administration has used its executive authority to temporarily cover telehealth services for Medicare beneficiaries during the pandemic.  This change allows patients to interact with their doctors via phone or video conferencing at no additional cost, covering commonly used services like Facetime and Skype.
     
  • Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar has waived telehealth laws that prevented doctors from treating patients in other states. This important step allows out-of-state doctors to treat patients in areas with high demand while greatly reducing the risk of transmission from in-person visits.
     

In sum, Trump’s new executive order builds on the Administration’s successful deregulatory response to COVID-19. As our country reopens, this new regulatory relief will jumpstart the economy and give businesses the flexibility they need to safely get Americans back to work.

Photo Credit: Gage Skidmore

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