On April 11, 2017, U.S. EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt signed a memorandum creating a public docket to collect public comments on how the Environmental Protection Agency can implement Executive Order (E.O.) 13777, “Enforcing the Regulatory Reform Agenda.”

E.O. 13777 was signed on February 24, 2017, by President Trump and directed federal agencies to designate regulatory reform officers and establish a Regulatory Reform Task Force. These task forces are required to evaluate existing regulations and make recommendations to agency heads regarding the regulations’ repeal, replacement, or modification. In part, the task force “shall attempt” to identify regulations that:

  1. eliminate jobs, or inhibit job creation;
  2. are outdated, unnecessary, or ineffective;
  3. impose costs that exceed benefits; or
  4. create a serious inconsistency or otherwise interfere with regulatory reform initiatives and policies.

Pruitt first outlined plans for EPA’s task force in a March 24, 2017, memorandum to EPA staff. The memorandum designated Samantha Davis (former general counsel for the Republican Attorneys General Association and now EPA senior counsel) as EPA’s regulatory reform officer and announced the members of the EPA task force.

The newly created public docket on the Regulations.gov website will be a repository for the public comments the agency receives on how to implement the regulatory reform directive. Comments are due by May 15, 2017.