"Democrats Call on Obama's Budget Office to Cough Up Rules"

"The Senate confirmed Sylvia Matthews Burwell as the new director of the White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB) at the end of April. Now Democrats in the House and Senate are calling on her to fix whatever's been delaying all the environmental, health, and safety rules at OMB for months (and in some cases, years)."

"As I've reported here before, Obama's OMB is a place where tough environmental and health rules go to die (or at least disappear for a really, really long time). On Wednesday, Sens. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.), Tom Harkin (D-Iowa), Ben Cardin (D-Md.), and Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), along with Dem Reps. Henry Waxman of California and Ed Markey of Massachusetts, wrote to Burwell asking her to cough up the rules that the lawmakers said had "languished" in OMB's Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs under her predecessor:

'Fourteen of the twenty rules submitted by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) have been under review at OIRA for more than 90 days; thirteen have been delayed for more than a year. One particularly egregious example of OIRA delays is EPA's Guidance Identifying Waters Protected by the Clean Water Act. This guidance would clarify regulatory jurisdiction over U.S. waters and wetlands. It is an issue that has come before the U.S. Supreme Court three times and, until the Administration finalizes this guidance, will continue to create confusion, loopholes, and inconsistency for officials at the state and local level. Despite the clear need for regulatory guidance from this Administration, EPA’s final guidance has been under review for 470 days, since February 21, 2012.'"

Kate Sheppard reports for Mother Jones June 5, 2013.


"Dems Push for Quicker White House Approval of Pending Regulations" (E2 Wire/The Hill)

"Democrat Sees ‘Koch Brothers’ Fingerprints’ on Regulations Bill" (RegWatch/The Hill)

Text of Democrats' June 4, 2013 letter to OMB's Burwell

Source: Mother Jones, 06/06/2013