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Transparency In Regulatory Analysis of Impacts on the Nation Act of 2011

Floor Speech

Location: Washington, DC

Mr. MATHESON. I want to thank my colleague from Kentucky for allowing me the time.

I think, as we look at the TRAIN Act today, you're going to hear a lot during this debate from both sides of the aisle; and there are going to be a lot of strong words from both sides of the aisle, probably beyond what the TRAIN Act really is.

The TRAIN Act was an idea: that we ought to take a look before we leap. The idea that we have all these processes taking place on individual rules, but that no one is bothering to take a look at how they all might fit together and what the impacts might be just doesn't make sense. That was the genesis behind this bill: to make sure that we look at the overall impact. You see, the EPA is supposed to look at the impacts on each individual rule, but they don't look at how they connect together.

The Clean Air Act has been a wonderful success in this country. It has made a lot of progress, and I think everyone in this room appreciates the health benefits it has created. It has also made a lot of progress on a lot of different criteria pollutants. Now we're taking on and addressing issues that reflect some of the more difficult issues to address at smaller increments at the upper end. As we're going to do that, I would suggest it makes sense for us to make sure that before we take actions that could have great significance that we at least understand that significance.

So that's the idea behind the TRAIN Act--look before you leap, and make sure how all of this fits together.

Despite what this debate sounds like for people watching tonight, there is a common agenda here among everyone. I think most people in this country value clean air. They value good decision-making, too, and we want to make sure that we evaluate these issues with the best analysis possible and with the best information possible so we can make decisions in the most efficient way.

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