H.R. 2122, Regulatory Accountability Act of 2013

Cost Estimate
August 1, 2013

As ordered reported by the House Committee on the Judiciary on July 24, 2013

H.R. 2122 would amend the Administrative Procedures Act (APA), which is the law that governs how federal agencies propose and establish regulations. Enacting this legislation would codify many practices aimed at increasing regulatory transparency and accountability that are currently required under several executive orders. However, this legislation also would impose some new requirements on federal agencies related to the rulemaking process and would extend some of the current requirements under the executive orders to additional federal agencies. Except for changes permitting judicial review for compliance with the Information Quality Act (enacted as part of the Consolidated Appropriations Acts, 2001 [Public Law 106-554]), the changes contained in this legislation would not apply to any rulemaking pending or completed on the date of enactment.

CBO estimates that implementing H.R. 2122 would cost about $70 million over the 2014-2018 period, assuming appropriation of the necessary funds. Such funding would cover the governmentwide costs of additional personnel, contractor costs, and other administrative expenses associated with meeting the new requirements under the legislation.

CBO also expects that enacting H.R. 2122 could delay the issuance of some final rules each year. As a result, CBO and the staff of the Joint Committee on Taxation (JCT) expect that enacting H.R. 2122 could have effects on both direct spending and revenues. Therefore, pay-as-you-go procedures apply to the legislation. However, given the large number of major rules issued each year and the extent to which rules vary in their nature and scope, we cannot determine the level of costs or savings stemming from delaying the effective date of some rules. In addition, while enacting the bill could affect direct spending and revenues if agencies not funded through annual appropriations incur additional costs, CBO estimates that any net increase in spending or change in revenues for those agencies would not be significant.

CBO expects that H.R. 2122 would impose no intergovernmental or private-sector mandates as defined in the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act.