Republican Congressman Tom Latham is proposing that paychecks for congress stop if congress fails to pass a detailed federal budget plan. The partisan divide in congress has led to a series of “continuing resolutions” and stop-gap legislation to keep the government running.
Under Latham’s proposal, if there’s no budget plan, there’s no spending in congress. “Your staff doesn’t get paid. You don’t have expenses. You can’t fly home and hide out,” Latham says. “You’re actually going to have to stay in Washington and do the work you’re supposed to.”
Latham is sponsoring another bill to make changes in federal regulations. “First of all, review current regulations on the books to see which ones are working, which ones have a cost benefit to society and get rid of the ones that don’t,” Latham says.
Latham says some of the new regulations coming from the Obama Administration are a “wet blanket” on the economy. Latham wants a longer period of time between when rules are proposed and when they go into effect. “The agencies don’t disclose to the private sector exactly how they came to those conclusions,” Latham says, “and so we’ve got to have time for the private sector to look at it ’cause it has dramatic impact on job creators, as far as small businesses, any kind of business today and trying to invest and you don’t know. There’s so much uncertainty out there.”
The public comment period for most federal regulations is between 30 and 180 days after the proposed rule has been published in the Federal Register. Individuals or businesses which object to a rule also have the option of going to court and asking a judge to delay the rule while the judge reviews it.
Latham says any proposed regulation that would “cost” the economy more than $100-million should be submitted to congress so elected officials can vote on it. Regulations are the detailed rules by which federal agencies administer laws passed by congress.
By Ric Hanson, KJAN, Atlantic