Congressman Bill Owens voted today in support of H.R. 4078, the Red Tape Reduction and Small Business Job Creation Act. The legislation bans the promulgation of "midnight rules," includes numerous provisions intended to reduce or streamline the federal regulatory process, requires cost-benefit analyses of new regulatory proposals, and expands the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act. H.R. 4078 passed the House of Representatives today by a vote of 245-172.
"Reducing unnecessary and burdensome regulation is just one of the many things we can do to support small businesses," Owens said. "I've been proud to work with my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to address many specific regulatory issues over the last two years, and I hope Congress can come together to find additional ways to support businesses in our communities, including leveling the playing field with China and ending tax breaks for companies that ship jobs overseas."
H.R. 4078 includes legislation previously cosponsored by Owens which enhances the Commodity Futures Trading Commission to conduct a cost-benefit analysis of new regulations to make certain they will not adversely affect economic growth.
Today's vote was the latest in a series of efforts by Congressman Owens to improve the regulatory environment for small businesses. To date, Owens has worked with both Republicans and Democrats to reduce regulation by:
· Repealing an outdated requirement that auto dealers provide a hardcopy information booklet on vehicle insurance costs. Working with Mississippi Republican Gregg Harper, Owens introduced H.R. 5648, which passed the House this week.
· Voting for the Farm Dust Regulation Prevention Act to prevent the EPA from regulating dust in the air on New York farms. The legislation passed last December.
· Cosponsoring legislation and pressing the EPA to prevent them from classifying spilled milk on New York farms as oil. As reported in the Glen Falls Post Star: No more crying: Spilled milk rule is changed.
· Pressing the Department of Labor to abandon a proposed rule preventing youth from working on the family farm. Owens announced that DOL officially abandoned the rule on April 26th. Earlier this week, the House passed legislation with Owens' support that specifically bars DOL from attempting to enact this regulation in the future.
· Introducing legislation to repeal an inspection fee on American apple exports to Canada. The Owens bill is included in the House version of the 2012 Farm Bill.
· Urging DOL to abandon additional OSHA "noise reduction" efforts in local workplaces. OSHA eventually reversed course on these plans.
· Pushing the Department of Justice to clarify and delay implementation of a vague rule that would force the lodging industry in Upstate New York to install expensive handicapped pool lifts at their hotels. DOJ has since postponed the regulation.
· Maintaining a successful "Regulation Reporting" program on his website that allows constituents to identify and report federal regulations they believe to be standing between small businesses and success.