Governor Little signs two new executive orders reducing regulatory burdens on Idahoans

Thursday January 31, 2019

Boise, Idaho – Governor Brad Little held a press conference today to sign two new executive orders aimed at reducing state regulatory burdens on Idaho citizens and businesses.

Executive Order 2019-02, the “Red Tape Reduction Act,” requires state agencies that have authority to issue administrative rules to identify at least two existing rules to be repealed or significantly simplified for every one rule they propose.

“Excessive regulation at all levels of government can impose high costs on businesses, inhibit job growth, and impede private sector investment,” Governor Little said in the executive order.

Idaho’s administrative code includes 736 chapters and 8,278 pages of regulations and at least 72,000 total restrictions. The three most regulated areas in Idaho are economic development with 3,018 pages of regulations, natural resources with 1,815 pages of regulations, and health and human services with 1,666 pages of regulations.

Executive Order 2019-02 also requires agencies to submit a business/competitiveness impact statement that identifies the impact any proposed rule will have on individuals and small businesses. It requires agencies to designate an existing employee as a Rules Review Officer to undertake a critical and comprehensive review of their administrative rules and identify costly, ineffective, or outdated regulations. The Division of Financial Management will provide Governor Little an annual report on “outlining the progress made in eliminating burdensome regulations and streamlining state government.”

Governor Little also signed Executive Order 2019-01, the “Licensing Freedom Act of 2019.” The executive order puts in place sunrise and sunset processes for future occupational licensing laws. The recommendations came from a report then-Lieutenant Governor Little finalized in 2018 outlining the scope of occupational licensing in Idaho. The report found at least 442 different occupational license types administered by 13 executive branch agencies and 47 boards and commissions and at least 204,000 licensees in Idaho. The report identified 241 recommendations for improvement, modification, or elimination of licensing requirements or other regulatory burdens.

“Onerous and outdated regulations in state government present barriers to independence and prosperity for Idahoans,” Governor Little said. “The two executive orders I signed today help simplify Idaho state government and make it more accountable to citizens.”

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