The “Forgotten Fifteen”
1) H.R. 872—Reducing Regulatory Burdens Act: The bill would amend the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA) to clarify that the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) or a state may not require a permit under the Federal Water Pollution Control Act for the application of pesticides regulated under FIFRA. By removing duplicative requirements, the bill would reduce overlapping and unnecessary regulation on pesticides that are already regulated, thereby reducing costs to both farmers and small business owners.
2) H.R. 910—Energy Tax Prevention Act of 2011: H.R. 910 would prohibit the EPA from regulating greenhouse gases to address climate change under the Clean Air Act. More specifically, the bill would prohibit the EPA from regulating: water vapor; carbon dioxide; methane; nitrous oxide; and any other substance subject to regulation, action or consideration under the Clean Air Act to address climate change. The bill would prevent a needless increase in energy prices for American households and businesses.
3) H.J.Res. 37—Disapproving the rule submitted by the Federal Communications Commission with respect to regulating the Internet and broadband industry practices: The bill would prohibit the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) from implementing a net-neutrality rule which would prohibit Internet providers from slowing or blocking legal websites or Internet services because of concerns over bandwidth. In May 2010, seventy-four House Democrats sent a letter to FCC Chairman Genachowski making the case that net-neutrality rules will “jeopardize jobs” and “should not be done without additional direction from Congress.”
4) H.R. 1230—Restarting American Offshore Leasing Now Act: H.R. 1230 would require the Department of the Interior (DOI) to auction offshore oil and gas leases in the Central and Western Gulf of Mexico, as well as in an area off the coast of Virginia. The bill would help to reduce energy prices and promote job creation by expediting offshore oil and natural gas exploration in the Gulf of Mexico and the Virginia coast.
5) H.R. 1229—Putting the Gulf of Mexico Back to Work Act: H.R. 1229 would direct the Secretary of the Interior to require that any lessee operating under an approved exploration plan obtain a permit before drilling any well, and obtain a new permit before drilling any well of a design that is significantly different than the design for which an existing permit was issued. The bill would prohibit the Secretary from issuing a permit without ensuring that the proposed drilling operations meet all critical safety system requirements (including blowout prevention), and oil spill response and containment requirements.
6) H.R. 1231—Reversing President Obama’s Offshore Moratorium Act: H.R. 1231 would require that each five-year offshore oil and gas leasing program offer leasing in the areas with the most prospective oil and gas resources, and would establish a domestic oil and natural gas production goal. The bill would essentially lift the President’s ban on new offshore drilling by requiring the Administration to move forward on American energy production in areas estimated to contain the most oil and natural gas resources.
7) H.R. 2021—The Jobs and Energy Permitting Act of 2011: H.R. 2021 would eliminate needless permitting delays that have stalled important energy production opportunities off the coast of Alaska. The bill would also eliminate the permitting back-and-forth that occurs between the EPA and its Environmental Appeals Board. Rather than having exploration air permits repeatedly approved and rescinded by the agency and its review board, the EPA will be required to take final action – granting or denying a permit—within six months.
8) H.R. 2018—Clean Water Cooperative Federalism Act of 2011: H.R. 2018 would a restrict the EPA ability to issue a revised or new water quality standard for a pollutant whenever a state has adopted and EPA already has approved a water quality standard for that pollutant, unless the state concurs with the EPA Administrator’s determination that the revised or new standard is necessary to meet the requirements of the Clean Water Act. The bill would prevent unilateral actions by the EPA that second-guess the decisions of the state regulatory agency.
9) H.R. 1315—Consumer Financial Protection & Soundness Improvement Act: H.R. 1315 would improve consumer protection and provides greater economic stability by allowing the Financial Stability Oversight Council to vote to set aside any harmful federal regulation.
10) H.R. 1938— North American-Made Energy Security Act: H.R. 1938 would direct the President, acting through the Secretary of Energy, to coordinate with all federal agencies responsible for an aspect of the President’s National Interest Determination and Presidential Permit decision regarding construction and operation of Keystone XL, to ensure that all necessary actions are taken on an expedited schedule. The bill would promote job creation and energy security by ending the needless delay of the construction and operation of the Keystone XL pipeline.
11) H.R. 2587—Protecting Jobs From Government Interference Act: H.R. 2587 would prohibit the National Labor Relations Board (NRLB) from ordering any employer to close, relocate, or transfer employment under any circumstance.
12) H.R. 2401—Transparency In Regulatory Analysis Of Impacts On The Nation: H.R. 2401 would require analyses of the cumulative and incremental impacts of certain rules and actions of the Environmental EPA. Specifically, the bill would require the President to establish the Committee for the Cumulative Analysis of Regulations that Impact Energy and Manufacturing. The Committee would be charged with analyzing and reporting on the cumulative and incremental impacts of covered rules and actions of the EPA concerning air, waste, water, and climate change. The bill would establish the interagency committee to evaluate the economic impacts of EPA regulations and delay the final dates for both the maximum achievable control technology (Utility MACT) standards and the cross-state air pollution rule (CSAPR) until the full impact has been studied. Both regulations would cost consumers and businesses $184 billion from 2011-2030 and would cause electrical prices to skyrocket.
13) H.R. 2681—Cement Sector Regulatory Relief Act: H.R. 2681 would provide a legislative stay of three EPA emissions standards that apply to cement manufacturing plants and are known as the “Cement MACT rules.” The bill would also provide for the implementation of effective regulation that protects communities both environmentally and economically.
14) H.R. 2250—EPA Regulatory Relief Act: H.R. 2250 would provide a legislative stay of four interrelated EPA rules, commonly referred to as the “Boiler MACT rules,” that govern emissions of mercury and other hazardous air pollutants from approximately 200,000 boilers and incinerators nationwide. The bill would remove this excessive regulatory burden placed on employers by the EPA’s Boiler MACT rules, potentially costing companies $14 billion and 224,000 American jobs, and replace them with sensible, achievable rules that do not destroy jobs.
15) H.R. 2273—Coal Residuals Reuse and Management Act: H.R. 2273 would utilize the framework and requirements of an existing federal regulatory program developed by the EPA under the Solid Waste Disposal Act (RCRA) as the basis for enforceable minimum federal standards for the regulation of a waste stream known as coal ash. The bill would include enforceable federal standards, but would leave regulation and enforcement to the states. The bill would also provide consistent, safe management of coal combustion residuals in a way that protects jobs and encourages recycling and beneficial use.
It seems to me that the Senate could have passed at least one of these bills. I am not convinced that it is the Republicans playing political games with the economy.