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Regulatory: No regulation is sometimes the best option

There is always an economic cost associated with regulation, and it’s not always worth it

When regulation is imposed there is almost always a corresponding discussion of its cost. Regulation, almost by definition, detracts from economic production and therefore results in a cost. The regulation may be justified on other grounds, such as safety, health, security and the like. However, rarely does regulation result in increased economic output, although some may argue that certain regulations ultimately result in increased production.

Representative Rob Portman has written in the Wall Street Journal about the coming “regulatory cliff” which he argues would greatly harm the economy. The regulatory cliff refers to numerous proposed federal regulations that could go into effect in 2013. Among the examples he cites is a proposed EPA ozone rule, which would cost manufacturers and other employers an estimated $90 billion annually. The rule has been withdrawn for now.

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Craig Metcalf

Craig Metcalf is a Shareholder with Kirton McConkie. His practice emphasizes intellectual property and appeals as well as mediation and arbitration. He can be reached...

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