“Do you heat your home? Light your rooms? Buy and cook food? Watch TV? If the answer is ‘yes,’ then you’ve fallen under federal regulation,” explains Heritage’s Mike Brownfield. “And you’re paying for it, too.”

In Red-Tape Rising: A 2011 Mid-Year Report, The Heritage Foundation’s James Gattuso and Diane Katz identify 15 new major regulations that have added $5.8 billion in annual costs along with $6.5 billion in costs for one-time implementation. And that’s just new regulations so far this year – there are thousands more, costing an estimated $1.75 trillion annually. 

Gattuso and Katz explain how these billions of dollars will hit home for Americans:

Many people may think that regulatory costs are a business problem. Indeed, they are, but the costs of regulation are inevitably passed on to consumers in the form of higher prices and limited product choices. Basic items, such as toilets, showerheads, lightbulbs, mattresses, washing machines, dryers, cars, ovens, refrigerators, television sets, and bicycles, all cost significantly more because of government decrees on energy use, product labeling, and performance standards that go well beyond safety—as well as hundreds of millions of hours of testing and paperwork to document compliance.

Reining in bureaucratic costs will require legislative action. The first steps, according to Gattuso and Katz, are to ensure Congressional review of all major regulations and to require a sunset date for each rule so that unnecessary regulations will automatically expire.

For more details on America’s growing red tape, see Gattuso and Katz’s full report.

Comments (2)

Tommy in Tucson - July 29, 2011

One of the reasons we are broke is we have invented a government system that keeps taking a fortune to run. One small example would be the equal employment opportunity commission (EEOC). It began with high ideals, “fairness in employment”. During the past several decades this one little branch of government has required thousands of federal, state, county and local government organizations as well as the private sector to hire tens of thousands of EEOC compliance officers, investigators, clerical staff and attorneys. They produce nothing! The cost is easily in the tens of billions of dollars. Add in court costs, the clerical staff, buildings and retirement programs. It becomes mind boggling. Environmentalists can sue the government over anything, tie up courts, stop projects and cost 100′s of billions of dollars over a decade and then have their costs paid by the government they just sued, who had to hire the attorneys to defend against the lawsuit. The EPA is another one of these money sucking “political” groups that is destroying our country. Oh, but it’s for the “common good”. What starts out as a good idea frequently becomes a behemoth financial horror story for the government and businesses. I didn’t even touch on our “social” programs, education, foreign aid, etc. Why do we pay healthy women to stay home and have babies that the fathers don’t support? In 1960 about 6% of all children were born to unwed mothers. We invented welfare in 1965. In 2008 over 42% of children were born to single mothers, a 700% increase. We spend money advertising food stamps! I’m not suggesting that these programs don’t have any value, but there has got to be a more efficient way! We are spending trillions.

Steve Ellis - July 30, 2011

Mr. Obama and his Liberal Legislators have to get out of the way of Business !! These numerous regulations that have been jammed onto businesses across these United States, are KILLING our recovery and just doing business at all. It is time to GET OUT OF THE WAY !!

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