Regulatory Reform:

How Can Congress Assess the Administration's Initiatives?

T-GGD-95-206: Published: Jul 18, 1995. Publicly Released: Jul 18, 1995.

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GAO discussed the Administration's regulatory reform initiatives and how Congress might assess their effectiveness. GAO noted that: (1) the best way to assess the Administration's regulatory reform proposals is to identify the goals that the proposals are trying to accomplish and then develop valid measures of how to achieve those goals; (2) congressional oversight is essential in sustaining attention to and attaining agreement on how to enhance ongoing regulatory reform efforts; (3) these initiatives attempt to reduce the regulatory burden imposed on business and the public and change agencies regulatory approaches from compliance to achieving outcomes; (4) although changes in regulatory burden can be key indicators of the success or failure of the Administration's regulatory initiatives, the definition and measurement of this burden is very difficult; and (5) Congress needs to think about how regulatory burden and outcomes are defined and measured before using them to determine the success of a particular initiative.

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