Lawmakers seek regulatory reign

State Sen. Devin LeMahieu, R-Oostburg, and State Rep. Adam Neylon, R-Pewaukee, have announced they will reintroduce the “REINS Act” this legislative session.

REINS stands for regulations from the executive in need of scrutiny. Under the REINS Act, any state agency rule that will cost an industry or business more than $10 million in costs and/or compliance must get approval of the legislature to move forward. LeMahieu contends that state agencies currently have the power to pass harmful regulations — which can cost Wisconsin businesses and citizens tens of millions of dollars in compliance and lost revenue — with little oversight from the Wisconsin Legislature.

The bill seeks to strengthen oversight by allowing lawmakers to request independent economic impact analyses on agency cost estimates. It also changes the rule-making process by instituting a $10 million cap on new rules and regulations passed by an agency, allowing the Legislature’s Joint Committee for Review of Administrative Rules (JCRAR) to request a public hearing early on in the rule-making process, and giving the JCRAR the ability to request an independent economic analysis for a second opinion on what the cost of compliance will be for Wisconsin’s business community.