Most small business owners in Nebraska I visit with have a few horror stories about the federal bureaucracy and some of the red tape they have to work through to grow their businesses or maintain what they have.
Some of the federal regulations seem like useless make-work but if a business fails to comply the owner faces steep fines; money that could be put to better uses like hiring workers. It pleases me every time we're able to help a business work through some of the seemingly unnecessary regulations although it's troubling that we have to get involved at all.
One of the biggest challenges our job creators face is over-regulation. We need to improve our regulatory process, and reduce uncertainty for small businesses.
But efforts to improve the regulatory process should not undermine safety for Nebraska's workers and its consumers.
I believe a little common sense can allow for a process that protects Nebraskans but does not deter job creation and economic growth in Nebraska.
While I appreciate the President's recent focus on regulatory reform, more must be done to eliminate uncertainty, reduce costs, and simplify the system. Here are three things that should be done immediately that would help businesses and end up creating jobs.
Bring Independent Regulatory Agencies Under Review: Independent regulatory agencies, such as the Federal Communications Commission, the Securities and Exchange Commission, and the Consumer Product Safety Commission, issue regulations that have a significant impact on the economy. So I think it makes a lot of sense to bring these agencies under the same review process for rules all the other agencies are subject to. All regulations should be subject to the same review process, no matter the issuing agency.
Independent Cost-Benefit Analysis: It would be very helpful to businesses if there were a requirement for an independent cost-benefit analyses for regulations, especially costly regulations. It seems reasonable that an independent third-party should review regulations that will significantly impact the economy before they are set in motion. This isn't currently required and it should be. Regulators should be held to account for the costs of their regulations.
Periodic Reviews of Regulations: It would also be helpful to require agencies to periodically review their existing regulations to determine if they should be modified or eliminated, and provide their findings in a report to Congress. Again, this is just common sense. It's like when you read a story about some law from the 1890's that's still on the books. These things need to be reviewed every once in a while to see if they still make sense and Congress should be a part of that process.
Nebraskans I talk with are fed up with the job-killing bickering going on in Congress. They want action. They want measures passed that will put Americans back to work including trade pacts that increase exports to other countries. They want the highway and aviation bills passed to move forward on infrastructure while creating jobs at the same time.
If Congress remains focused on partisanship we will have job-killing gridlock. Both sides need to work together to eliminate uncertainty for businesses and families and create good jobs for the millions of Americans and thousands of Nebraskans who want to contribute to our society.