Monday, January 30, 2017

Some uncertainty surrounds Trump regulation-cutting order

...Dave Warner, a spokesman for the National Pork Producers Council, told Agri-Pulse that NPPC is generally supportive of the order as a means to make sure farmers, ranchers, and business owners “aren’t overburdened.” “While there’s constantly new regulations added, there’s never any taken away,” Warner said. “At some point, something’s got to give.” In the legislative process, bills passed by Congress commonly require rulemaking by executive branch agencies. Warner says that rulemaking can get to such a point where regulations might be duplicative or outside the intent of Congress. NPPC isn’t necessarily trying to slice current regulations to a lower quota, Warner said, but NPPC members think a healthy look at what’s on the books could be a good thing. But others aren’t so sure. “It’s unworkable,” Ferd Hoefner, senior strategic adviser with the National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition, said in an interview with Agri-Pulse. He pointed to how the provision could hit agriculture’s chief legislative priority – the upcoming farm bill – and keep it from being fully implemented. “Essentially, Congress would pass a new farm bill in 2018, and USDA would have to pick and choose a couple of things to implement because they (only) have a handful of things that they can get rid of,” Hoefner added. There’s also confusion about how the withdrawal of regulations would work. If a new regulation is produced by the Agriculture Department, would two USDA regulations need to go or would regulations from another department also be up for grabs? What about rulemaking that updates programs but is not a completely new regulation such as annual blending targets for the Renewable Fuel Standard?...more

This reminds me of a Will Rogers story:

 In 1914 the Germans were sinking U.S. ships in the North Atlantic. It was a turkey shoot because the Germans had the U-boat and we didn't. Somebody asked the American folk philosopher Will Rogers what we ought to do about it. He thought about it a moment and said, "Well, I think you should boil the ocean." The man was incredulous. "Boil the ocean?" "Yes," said Rogers. "I think if you heated up the Atlantic ocean, the submarines would rise to the surface and you could capture them." "But how do you boil an ocean?" the man asked. Rogers responded, "I've given you the solution. It's up to you to work out the details." 

Trump is making policy, and will let others work out the details.

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