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Farm Bureau Encourages House to Pass Regulatory Transparency Bill

News / FBNews February 27, 2017

In light of the significant amounts of written, electronic and social media information generated by regulatory agencies during and after regulatory actions, Farm Bureau is calling on the House to approve legislation that would ensure both the public and Congress have increased access to federal agency communications beyond those published in the Federal Register.

This type of electronic information can be vitally important public information. Such information can also fall outside the formal or official rulemaking record. Because this type of information often can be found on the Web or in social media one day but gone the next, it is critically important that the agencies be required to protect this information.
—  American Farm Bureau Federation President Zippy Duvall wrote in a letter to House members, urging strong, bipartisan support for the Regulatory Integrity Act of 2017 (H.R. 1004).

The bill would require federal agencies to maintain all public communications associated with guidance, policy statements, directives, rule making and adjudications for a period of no less than 5 years. The measure also incorporates language that would prohibit agencies from advocating on behalf of their own proposed rules. The language comes from an amendment offered by Rep. Collin Peterson (D-Minn.) that was included in the Regulatory Accountability Act of 2017 (H.R. 5), which was passed by the House earlier this year. 

“We believe it is important for Congress to enact this legislation to require the head of each executive agency to make any and all information available to the public and Congress in a searchable format in a prominent location,” Duvall wrote.

AFBF's letter to the House

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