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Rolling Back Federal Regulations

Across Nebraska, I’ve heard from many business owners, farmers, ranchers and families that burdensome government regulations are interfering with their everyday lives. Many of these cumbersome new rules defy common sense and hold back the ability of job creators to expand and grow. Eliminating these barriers is one of my top priorities.

When bureaucratic red tape gets in the way, as it has too often in this Administration, our businesses—particularly our small businesses that create two-thirds of jobs in America—have less room to expand their payroll. The current Administration has proposed more than 425 new rules and regulations with significant economic impact since taking office. This costs businesses much-needed capital that might otherwise be spent hiring new workers.

It took nine months and six votes, but my efforts to repeal the burdensome 1099 paperwork mandate embedded in the health care law were finally successful. This mandate would have piled a mountain of new paperwork on the desks of farmers, ranchers, business owners, churches and nonprofits at a time when many were already drowning in regulatory requirements. I was pleased to see this portion of the law wiped from the books, but more must be done.

American businesses saw a glimmer of hope in January 2011 when President Obama directed federal agencies to review regulations that smother businesses and prevent job growth, and yet another in September when he announced the postponement of an onerous smog regulation. Unfortunately, these actions have not gone far enough to stop the runaway train of regulation that is weighing down our economy. 

The Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) recent attempts to increase its scope and authority have threatened the livelihoods of many Americans, particularly farmers and ranchers. Uncertainty abounds because of EPA’s attempt to over-regulate everything from farm dust to ponds; implement back door cap-and-trade; and stomp out coal-generated power. Despite bipartisan concerns in Congress and from job creators, the agency continues to stretch its powers by proposing onerous, impractical and out-of-touch rules and regulations. To help curb the spread of over-regulation at EPA, I've introduced a package of legislation promoting greater transparency and accountability in the agency's regulatory process. I will continue my efforts to rein-in the agency.

With a fragile economy and far too many out of work, it is an even worse time for the Administration to create these regulatory roadblocks for our nation’s job creators. That’s why I have introduced and cosponsored bills that will help our job creators by easing regulatory requirements and removing red tape. Our economy is in need of a serious boost, and it begins by getting rid of cumbersome regulations and giving job creators and their employees an opportunity to thrive. Doing so will give our businesses room to expand and allow them to help put people back to work.