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Regulation Digest

February 8, 2023

Vol. 12, No. 6

Editor: Nate Thompson

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Marketplace of Ideas

GW Regulatory Studies

- Regulatory Body Shops, Bridget C.E. Dooling & UVA's Rachel Augustine Potter


- Podcast: Phony Cybersecurity Regulation

- The USDA Can't Stop Organic Food Fraud, Baylen Linneken

R Street

- About Those Green Subsidies …, Philip Rossetti

- Support Grows for Murphy-Young Legislation to Limit the Use of Noncompete Agreements, Eli Lehrer

Resources for the Future

- Hydrogen Hubs: Get to Know the Encouraged Applicants, Lucie Bioret et al.


- Event: Register for SBCA’s 2023 Annual Conference, 3/9-3/14 

- Jerry Ellig Award for Best Student Paper at the SBCA Annual Meeting


- Reinventing Operational Risk Regulation for a World of Climate Change, Cyberattacks, Hilary J. Allen

- Technology Driven Government Law and Regulation, D. Daniel Sokol

- Comity & Federalism in Extraterritorial Abortion Regulation, Jensen Lillquist

The Regulatory Review

- Think Globally on Climate, Act Locally on Leaf Blowers, Mark Nevitt

- What the Do-Not-Call Rule Can Teach Regulators, William McDonald

- Week in Review, Isaac Rice et al.

Tech Policy Institute

- Event: TPI Antitrust Conference, Feb. 27

Urban Institute

- Impact of the COVID-19 Health Emergency Expiration on Health Coverage, Matthew Buettgens & Andrew Green


- The Strange Case of United States v. Google, Richard J. Pierce

- The CFPB’s Lack of Candor to the Court, Continued, Adam White

- ACUS Updates: Seeking Consultants, New Recommendations, and Successes, Conrad Dryland

American Action Forum

- Tracking the Regulatory Record of Recent Administrations at the Halfway Point, Dan Goldbeck

- A Busy, Up-and-down Start to February, Dan Goldbeck

- Resort Fees, TV Cancellation Fees, and Other Existential Crises, Douglas Holtz-Eakin


- Digital Wallets are the Future for Faster Access, and More Secure Transactions, Shane Tews & Michael Palage

- The FTC Is Abandoning Consumers, Mark Jamison

American Prospect

- Keeping Crypto From Corrupting the Regulators, Robert Kuttner

- Mortgage Bankers Scrambling Over Conservative Court Ruling, David Dayen

Bipartisan Policy Center

- A Deep Dive into the Proposed AFFH Rule Rewrite, Andrea Lau

- 8Qs for House Financial Services Committee on China

Brookings Institution

- Biden SOTU: A Need for Digital Regulation, Tom Wheeler

C. Boyden Gray Center

- Event: What is The Rule of Law in the Administrative State?, 2/8

Cato Institute

- Biden’s Student‐​Debt Forgiveness Plan Is Illegal, Thomas A. Berry

- Podcast: How Non‐​Compete Agreements Work in Labor Markets, Caleb O. Brown et al. 


- What To Read Before the SOTU, Kiera Manser et al.


- This Week in Ridiculous Regulation, Ryan Young

- Biden’s SOTU: More Spending, Regulation, and Dependency, Clyde Wayne Crews

- CFPB Cap on Credit Card Late Fees Raises Cost of Credit, John Berlau

- FTC Should Not Trade Consumer Welfare for an Antitrust Crystal Ball, Jessica Melugin & Ryan Young

Federalist Society

- CFPB’s Targeting of Discrimination in Finance Through UDAAP, Todd J. Zywicki et al.


- Event: WorkshOPP on Tips for Powerful Comments, Feb. 23

Free State Foundation

- In 2023 the Congressional Privacy Impasse Could Reach Its Breaking Post, Andrew Long

Harvard T.H. Chan

- Course: Environmental Health Risk: Analysis and Applications, Feb 27 - Mar 3

Heritage Foundation

- When Government Policy Hits Home—And Your Wallet, EJ Antoni


- Congress Should Stop the Impending Patchwork of Online Safety Laws, Daniel Castro

- Event: Can Regulators Handle the Mastodons of the World?, Feb. 28

Manhattan Institute

- Do Federal Health Journals Publish Research that is Independently Reproducible?, Randall Lutter


- Harm Reduction: When Does It Improve Health, and When Does it Backfire?John Cawley & Davide Dragone

- Event: Economic Analysis of Regulation, Spring 2023, Feb. 9

Niskanen Center

- 5 Immigration Proposals the Biden Admin. Should Consider this Year, Matthew La Corte et al.

Pacific Legal Fdn. & JLPP

- Event: Ensuring Democratic Accountability in the Administrative State, Feb. 9

Agency Rulemaking Highlights

Notable Actions

Initial Recommendations on Broadening OIRA Engagement

The Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA) released a summary of learnings and potential recommendations from its November 2022 listening session on broadening public engagement in the federal regulatory process. OIRA invites feedback as it considers the recommendations, which aim to make regulatory material more accessible and to reduce barriers to public participation—particularly among small businesses, and underserved communities. An additional virtual listening session will be held March 7. Comments due March 10 at 5PM ET.

Reducing Sugar and Sodium in School Meals

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) seeks comments on a proposed rule introducing standards to lower the sugar and sodium content of school meals, aiming to address the prevalence of chronic health conditions. USDA plans to issue a final rule for implementation by the 2024-25 academic year. Comments due April 10.

Supporting Access to Leave for Federal Employees

President Biden signed a memorandum for the heads of executive departments and agencies supporting increased access to family and medical leave for federal employees. The order directs agency heads to consider providing unpaid leave under expanded circumstances, including during an employee’s first year of service while paid leave may not have been accrued.

Rescinding Moral Exception to Contraception Under ACA

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS), Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and Department of Labor (DOL) issued a notice of proposed rulemaking to rescind the exceptions for entities and individuals with religious or moral objections to covering contraceptive services. Eliminating the exception would require group or individual health insurance plans to cover certain contraceptive services without cost sharing. The proposal provides for individuals to receive contraceptive services at no cost through other providers without involvement of an objecting entity. Comments due April 3.

Defining Activities for Underserved Populations

The Department of Education (ED) is proposing to define underserved populations as “Black, Latino, and Indigenous and Native American persons, Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders, and other persons of color.” Further, the proposal seeks to establish a priority to make awards to minority entities and Indian tribes to conduct research and training for underserved populations. Comments due March 10.

Prohibiting SEC Employee Ownership of Regulated Assets

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) issued a proposed rule to amend the standards of ethical conduct for SEC members and employees to prohibit employee ownership of sector funds that have a stated policy of concentrating their investments in entities directly regulated by the SEC. The proposal seeks to avoid conflicts of interest or appearance concerns. Comments due March 31.

Energy Conservation Standards for External Power Supplies

The Department of Energy (DOE) is proposing to update energy conservation standards for commercial and industrial external power supplies. DOE will hold a virtual public discussion on the proposal March 1. Comments due April 3.

CBP’s Electronic Validation of Travel Documents

Customs and Border Protection (CBP) is proposing to update its requirements for commercial air carriers which permit the pre-screening of passengers entering the United States for security purposes. The amended rule would allow CBP to determine whether each passenger is traveling with valid, authentic travel documents prior to the passenger boarding the aircraft. Comments due April 3.

The Opinion Section

WSJ Editorial Board: Banning Gas Stoves by Regulation

Charlie Munge: Why America Should Ban Crypto

Alexis Leondsis: Biden Should Cap Credit Card Interest Rates, Not Just Late Fees

Kate Shaw: This Is Biden’s Chance to Tell Us Exactly What the Supreme Court Has Done

Randall Lutter: Restoring Public Trust in Public Health

Ezra Klein: The Story Construction Tells About America’s Economy is Disturbing

Paul Krugman: Regulation, Productivity and the Meaning of Life

Matthew Mittelsteadt: Quantum Computing Is Coming — and There’s More the Biden Administration Can Do To Prepare

WSJ Editorial Board: California’s Marijuana Paradise Lost

Tyler Cowen: ChatGPT: What Kind of Questions Get Good Answers?

In the News

Governance & Politics

Financial Markets & Housing

Energy & Environment

Health & Safety

Business & Technology

Transportation & Infrastructure

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