U.S. Sen. David Vitter (R-La.), Chairman of the Small Business & Entrepreneurship Committee, along with six Committee Republican Senators, sent a letter to Gina McCarthy, Administrator of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), regarding recent findings that the EPA failed to adhere to the legal rulemaking process and consult with small businesses while developing a new regulation for carbon dioxide emissions from power plants as part of the President’s Clean Power Plan.
“It should go without saying that federal agencies should always comply with all relevant laws during the rulemaking process. Unfortunately, that is not the case with EPA and some of its recent regulatory schemes, including 111(d) under the Clean Air Act and the waters of the United States rule,” said Vitter. “There is no room for shortcuts when a major sector of our economy will be significantly hindered by EPA’s rules and regulations, and America’s small businesses deserve a seat at the table and to be provided an adequate response as to why EPA is disregarding their important contributions to our economy.”
“Congress clearly intended for the Regulatory Flexibility Act to provide necessary protections to small businesses during the rulemaking process,” wrote the Senators. “As EPA proceeds with implementation of the president’s controversial Clean Power Plan, we strongly urge the agency to work cooperatively with the Small Business Administration’s Office of Advocacy and the small entity representatives. The integrity of this process – and the confidence that small entities have in it – requires no less.”
In today’s letter, the Senators requested that Administrator McCarthy directly address the official conclusions released by the Small Business Administration’s (SBA) Office of Advocacy that EPA did not comply with the requirements of the Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA) by showing up unprepared for Small Business Advocacy Review panel meetings and failing to provide adequate information that would allow small entity representatives to thoroughly examine the economic impact of EPA’s proposed carbon rule.
Earlier this week, Vitter and Republican Senators on the Committee introduced legislation to improve on the Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA), which would eliminate loopholes in the law and ensure that federal agencies properly consult small businesses during the rulemaking process. Click here to read more.
Senators who signed today’s letter include Sens. Jim Risch (R-Idaho), Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), Rand Paul (R-Ky.), Deb Fischer (R-Neb.), Tim Scott (R-S.C.), and Mike Enzi (R-Wyo.).