U.S. Representative Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) has reportedly sent a letter to 150 companies, trade groups and think tanks asking “for your assistance in identifying existing and proposed regulations that have negatively impacted job growth in your members’ industry.” The letter also asked for suggestions on regulation and rulemaking reform.

According to published reports, groups receiving the letter include the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, National Association of Manufacturers and Financial Services Roundtable, Association of Pool & Spa Professionals, Fertilizer and Salt Institutes, Kitchen Cabinet Manufacturers Association, and the Color Pigments Manufacturers Association. Issa, who is chair of the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, has apparently pledged to publicly release responses to the letter. See The Hill, January 10, 2011.

Meanwhile, President Barack Obama (D) has signed an executive order establishing principles for agencies to follow in adopting regulations addressing such matters as product safety, toxic chemicals, labor, energy, and the environment. The order also requires a review of existing regulations to eliminate or revise those “that may be outmoded, ineffective, insufficient, or excessively burdensome.” A memorandum to agency heads accompanying the order affirms the administration’s commitment “to eliminating excessive and unjustified burdens on small businesses, and to ensuring that regulations are designed with careful consideration of their effects, including their cumulative effects.” A second memorandum calls for federal agencies to develop plans to make their regulatory compliance and enforcement activities “accessible, downloadable, and searchable online.”