Red Tape Reduction and Small Business Job Creation Act

Floor Speech

By:  Howard Coble
Date: July 25, 2012
Location: Washington, DC

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Mr. McINTYRE. Madam Chairman, I rise to speak in favor of the amendment that Congressman Manzullo and I have introduced to improve H.R. 4078, the Red Tape Reduction and Small Business Job Creation Act.

Our amendment would make a sensible and needed adjustment to our Nation's regulatory policy by requiring that Federal agencies develop guidelines to maximize the quality and integrity of scientific information used in the regulatory process. This is a goal not only supported by many Members of Congress from both sides of the aisle, but also by the administration.

In March of 2009, the President issued a memorandum directing the Office of Science and Technology to require Federal departments and agencies to develop procedures for restoring scientific integrity to government decision-making.

At the beginning of last year, the President issued Executive Order 13563, which stated that each agency ``shall ensure the objectivity of any scientific and technological information and process used to support the agency's regulatory actions.''

Our amendment, which is based on bipartisan legislation that Congressman Manzullo and I introduced earlier this year, builds on the President's action, has bipartisan support, and codifies the requirement that the Director of the Office of Science and Technology compel each Federal agency to develop guidelines regarding the scientific information used by Federal agencies.

Additionally, this amendment would clarify that scientific information be supported by peer review, when appropriate, ensure that scientific studies used in decision-making be disclosed to the public, and require an opportunity for stakeholder input. This is just common sense.

It requires Federal agencies to give the greatest weight to information based on reproducible data that is developed in accordance with the scientific method.

Finally, this would provide grounds for any agency's actions that violate these integrity guidelines, that they have to be deemed arbitrary and subject to challenge by the affected stakeholders. This commonsense amendment requires maximizing the quality and integrity of scientific information used in the regulatory process, and I encourage my colleagues to adopt this bipartisan amendment.

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