State and Federal Regulatory Reform: A Comparative Analysis
This paper provides a comprehensive assessment of state efforts to eliminate or change burdensome regulations and to use economic analysis to produce more sensible results. More than half the states have undertaken initiatives of some kind to improve regulation, including oversight mechanisms and the use of cost-benefit analysis. However, the effectiveness of oversight and enforcement of regulatory reform initiatives in the day-to-day world of rule making is often doubtful. As in the case of the federal government, state agencies have devised ways to avoid doing what they do not want to do. Generally, regulatory reform initiatives are most effective when they have active political support, a strong, well-funded oversight mechanism, and states provide clear, specific guidelines to implementing agencies. While several states have sought to establish such a structure, most states have not. Until significant resources and political support are devoted to reform efforts, real-world progress in regulatory reform is not likely to be great. Copyright 2000 by the University of Chicago.
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