With a last-minute flourish of $24 billion in final regulatory costs in the last three weeks, the Obama Administration passed $890 billion in cumulative burdens. The record-breaking regulatory output of 2016, which imposed the most major rules in history, capped perhaps the most aggressive regulatory record in history. From the available data on the American Action Forum’s (AAF) RegRodeo.com, the Bush Administration averaged $42 billion in annual final rule costs. The Obama Administration more than doubled that figure, with $111 billion in annual final burdens.Of course, the problem here is that these regulations are abrasive in the metaphorical gears of the American economy's machine. They slow down industries, reduce hiring, reduce employment, and reduce pay. These cost burdens break down as:
The end result, though, is that somebody has to bear that $890 billion in costs, and that someone is the American people.
- Total Costs: $890 billion
- Annual Costs: $139 billion
- Annual Paperwork: 549 million hours
- Rules Costing More than $1 billion: 113
For perspective, during the last four years of the Bush Administration, it imposed more than $159 billion in burdens; President Obama and his regulators published more than that in 2016 alone, $164 billion, which is nothing compared to Obama's total of $218 billion in 2012!
Who are the big offenders? I bet I don't have to tell you the most expensive regulations came from the EPA. Breitbart summarized it as follows:
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued $344 billion worth of regulations during the Obama administration, and implemented the most expensive regulations out of all government agencies, according to the study.In tabular format:
The Department of Energy came in second, issuing $194 billion in regulations over the last eight years.
The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) issued $104 billion in regulations as it worked to roll out Obamacare provisions.
The Department of Transportation’s regulations totaled $58 billion, while the Department of Labor issued $56 billion worth of rules during Obama’s time in office.