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Regulation Digest

January 4, 2023

Vol. 12, No. 1

Editor: Nate Thompson

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Marketplace of Ideas

GW Regulatory Studies

- Event: Assessing the Impact of President Biden’s Marijuana Actions (AALS Conference session feat. RSC’s Bridget C.E. Dooling), Jan. 6


- Negotiations of Oil and Gas Auxiliary Lease Clauses: Evidence from Pennsylvania’s Marcellus Shale, Max Harleman et al. 

- Event: Economic Analysis of Regulation, Feb. 9

Niskanen Center

- The Way Economic Freedom Indexes Measure Regulation is Deeply Flawed, Ed Dolan 

Pew Trusts

- President Signs Bipartisan Measure to Improve Addiction Treatment, Sheri Doyle & Vanessa Baaklini 

Public Citizen

- Climate Roadmap for US Financial Regulation, David Arkush et al.


- New Oregon Wastewater Rules Threaten Portland's Food Cart Culture, Baylen Linnekin 

- What the Southwest Meltdown Means for Airline Policy, Robert Poole 

- Under Government Pressure, Twitter Suppressed Truthful Speech About COVID-19, Jacob Sullum 

Resources for the Future

- Event: How Much Will Electric Vehicles Drive Decarbonization?, Jan. 13

- Podcast: 2022 Year in Review: Energy and Environmental Policy, Catherine Wolfram & John Larsen


- “We Test”: An Imagined Regulatory Future, Cass Sunstein

- Three Misconceptions about Federal Regulation, Patrick A. McLaughlin & Casey B. Mulligan

- Event: Register for SBCA’s 2023 Annual Conference, March 9-10

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


- Regulation of Environmentally Harmful Fossil Fuel Subsidies, Henok Asmelash

- African Data Protection Laws: Politics, But as Usual, Mailyn Fidler

- SEC vs. Kim Kardashian and the MQD, Jerry Markham

The Regulatory Review

- Outcome-Based Cooperative Regulation, Christopher Hodges

- UK Proposes Major Financial Regulation Overhaul, Johan B. Stagstrup

- The Adjudicatory Capacity to Make Decisions, Eyal Lurie Pardes

Tech Policy Institute

- Broadband Prices Mostly Stable Last Year, Scott Wallsten

Washington Legal Fdn

- Five Compliance Predictions for 2023, Gregory A. Brower

- FTC’s New Guidance on Health-Related Advertising: A Bit of a Stretch, Katie Bond & Samuel A. Butler


- The IRS Audits Trump, Andy Grewal

American Action Forum

- Proposed Rules Finish Off 2022 With a Bang, Dan Goldbeck

- Wishes for 2023, Douglas Holtz-Eakin

- Health Care Rule Continues Billion-dollar Trend, Dan Goldbeck


- 2022 Gave Us Many Reasons to Be Encouraged About Our Future, James Pethokoukis

- Observations on the EPA Final Revised Definition of “Waters of the United States”, Benjamin Zycher

American Prospect

- 2023: A Year for Executive Action, David Dayen

- A Moral Video Game Industry Requires Regulation, Ryan Cooper 

Brookings Institution

- Podcast: Is it Time to Regulate Social Media Platforms?, Darrell M. West, John Villasenor & Mark MacCarthy

Cato Institute

- To Destigmatize People with Substance Use Disorder, SAMHSA Can Destigmatize Treatment, Jeffrey A. Singer

- America, Don’t Be the Anti‐​Network State, Jack Solowey


- How Climate Legislation Protects the Environment and Public Health, Robert L. Glicksman


- Climate Fact Check 2022

- This Week in Ridiculous Regulations, Ryan Young

- Customers, Not Regulators, Should Hold Southwest Accountable, Sean Higgins


- 8M Workers Got a Raise on New Year’s Day, Sebastian Martinez Hickey & David Cooper

Federalist Society

- Podcast: Congress’ Responsibility to Answer the Major Questions, Sarah Binder et al.

Free State Foundation

- Innovation Will Protect Consumers From Illegal Text Messages, Seth L. Cooper


- Antitrust: DOJ and FTC Jurisdictions Overlap, but Conflicts are Infrequent

- Freight Rail: Information on Precision-Scheduled Railroading

Heritage Foundation

- Can the 14th Amendment Be Used to Protect Human Life Before Birth?, Thomas Jipping

Inst. for Policy Integrity

- Revesz to Lead OIRA; Ünel to Direct Institute for Policy Integrity

- Texas Should Think Again Before Rushing to Overhaul Its Electricity Markets, Matt Lifson & Chris Holt


- Big Tech Needs to Better Defend Itself, David Moschella

- Better Data Collection Will Reduce Digital Inequalities, Gillian Diebold

Manhattan Institute

- Employment-Based Visas Should Attract the World’s Best, Not Repel Them, Daniel Di Martino 

Mercatus Center

- The Greatness of Growth, Veronique de Rugy

- The Unintended Consequences of the FRA's Minimum Train Crew Size Rule, Patrick McLaughlin

- Event: 2nd Annual Antitrust Forum: Policy in Transition, Jan. 26

Agency Rulemaking Highlights

Unified Agenda Released

The Biden Administration has published its Fall 2022 Unified Agenda of Regulatory and Deregulatory Actions reporting on the actions administrative agencies plan to issue in the near and long term. Released by the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA), the agenda provides important public notice and transparency about proposed regulatory and deregulatory actions within the executive branch.

Proposed RFS Standards for 2023-2025, Final Standards for Site Remediation

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is proposing new volume requirements for the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) for 2023 to 2025. The action also proposes a 2023 supplemental standard of 250 million gallons to address the remand of the 2016 rulemaking. Comments due February 10.

Additionally, EPA published a final rule with amendments to the national emission standards for hazardous air pollutants (NESHAP) for the site remediation source category, which removes several categories of exemptions to site remediation activities. Effective December 22, 2022.

Changes to Immigration Benefit Requests

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is proposing to increase certain fees with the aim to improve service levels and to offset its increased costs, caseload, and personnel. The proposal establishes distinct fees for petitions for nonimmigrant workers, adds new fee exemptions for certain humanitarian categories, and makes changes to certain other immigration benefit request requirements. Comments due March 6.

Prescription Requirements for Eyeglasses

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) issued a proposed rule to amend the Ophthalmic Practice Rules to require that prescribers obtain a signed confirmation after releasing an eyeglass prescription to a patient. The agency also proposes to permit prescribers to comply with automatic prescription release via electronic delivery in certain circumstances. Comments due March 6.

Benchmarks for Affordable Multifamily Housing

The Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) issued a final rule on the multifamily housing goals for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac for 2023 and 2024. The rule introduces a new methodology for establishing benchmark levels for the percentage of affordable units in multifamily properties financed by mortgages purchased by the enterprises each year. Effective February 21.

Refunds of Alcohol Excise Tax

The Treasury Department and DHS issued an interim final rule transferring responsibility for administering refunds and tax credits on imported alcohol. Per the Taxpayer Certainty and Disaster Tax Relief Act of 2020, these responsibilities are shifting from the U.S. Customs and Border Protection to Treasury, effective January 1.

NRC’s Alternatives to the Use of Credit Ratings

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) is proposing to amend its regulations for approved financial assurance mechanisms for decommissioning, specifically for parent and self-company guarantees that require bond ratings issued by credit rating agencies. The proposed rule would implement the provisions of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2010 that directed agencies to remove requirements that rely on credit ratings. Comments due March 20.

Extending Comment Period for Transportation Cyber Risk Management

The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) is extending the comment period for an advance notice of proposed rulemaking seeking input regarding ways to strengthen cybersecurity and resiliency in the pipeline and rail sectors. Comments now due February 1.

Upcoming Webinar: The editors of the new Handbook of Regulatory Authorities and the GW Regulatory Studies Center invite you to join us for a webinar at 9:00 AM EST on Thursday, January 19.

From Edward Elgar Publishing, the handbook is a valuable resource for academics, policy analysts, practitioners, and policymakers working in the regulatory field. The webinar will examine the regulatory landscape and provide interdisciplinary and international perspectives on the fundamental concepts, theories, practices, and empirical achievements and challenges in the contemporary study of regulation.

We hope you will join us for this engaging discussion of international perspectives. Register today at bit.ly/gwreg-events!

The Opinion Section

Susan E. Dudley: Making State Level Regulation More Accountable

Josh Blackman: Can GPT Pass the Multistate Bar Exam?

Jonathan H. Adler: Biden Administration Finalizes New WOTUS Definition for the New Year

John Waldman: Once an Open Sewer, New York Harbor Now Teems With Life. Thank the Clean Water Act.

Bloomberg Editorial Board: When Fixing the Housing Market, Don’t Forget the Neediest

Clyde Crews Jr.: 118th Congress Should Confront Biden Administration On Overdue Regulatory Cost Benefit Reports

Tyler Cowen: FTX Collapse: Beware the Dangers of Crypto Regulation

Zeynep Tufekci: The Shameful Open Secret Behind Southwest’s Failure

In the News

Governance & Politics

Financial Markets & Housing

Energy & Environment

Health & Safety

Business & Technology

Transportation & Infrastructure

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