Technology aids regulation reform

Agencies are beginning to streamline their regulations through techniques that include simply eliminating some regulations and through technology, reports Cass Sunstein, administrator of the White House's Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, in a post to the OMB blog on June 4.

The entry concerns the governmentwide regulatory “lookback” that President Barack Obama called for a January 2011 executive order. 

“In response to that requirement, over two dozen agencies identified more than 500 reforms,” Sunstein wrote. “Agencies have already proposed or finalized more than 100 of them.” Agencies released their progress reports on June 4.

Among the highlights Sunstein noted: The Department of Agriculture has “streamlined its meat and poultry labeling approval process, creating a new, web-based electronic alternative to paper applications, making the process faster, cheaper, and more accurate.”

Obama issued a new executive order on May 10 requiring federal agencies to continue to scrutinize rules on the books to see if they make sense.

That order has three primary features. It requires agencies to:

  • Identify reforms that will produce significant savings, especially for small business.
  • Report to the public regularly on their efforts and plans.
  • Obtain public comments to see which rules should be simplified, improved or repealed.

About the Author

Technology journalist Michael Hardy is a former FCW editor.

FCW in Print

In the latest issue: Looking back on three decades of big stories in federal IT.


  • Anne Rung -- Commerce Department Photo

    Exit interview with Anne Rung

    The government's departing top acquisition official said she leaves behind a solid foundation on which to build more effective and efficient federal IT.

  • Charles Phalen

    Administration appoints first head of NBIB

    The National Background Investigations Bureau announced the appointment of its first director as the agency prepares to take over processing government background checks.

  • Sen. James Lankford (R-Okla.)

    Senator: Rigid hiring process pushes millennials from federal work

    Sen. James Lankford (R-Okla.) said agencies are missing out on younger workers because of the government's rigidity, particularly its protracted hiring process.

  • FCW @ 30 GPS

    FCW @ 30

    Since 1987, FCW has covered it all -- the major contracts, the disruptive technologies, the picayune scandals and the many, many people who make federal IT function. Here's a look back at six of the most significant stories.

  • Shutterstock image.

    A 'minibus' appropriations package could be in the cards

    A short-term funding bill is expected by Sept. 30 to keep the federal government operating through early December, but after that the options get more complicated.

  • Defense Secretary Ash Carter speaks at the TechCrunch Disrupt conference in San Francisco

    DOD launches new tech hub in Austin

    The DOD is opening a new Defense Innovation Unit Experimental office in Austin, Texas, while Congress debates legislation that could defund DIUx.

Reader comments

Please post your comments here. Comments are moderated, so they may not appear immediately after submitting. We will not post comments that we consider abusive or off-topic.

Please type the letters/numbers you see above

More from 1105 Public Sector Media Group