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Full Text of this Amendment

SA 194. Ms. COLLINS submitted an amendment intended to be proposed by her to the bill S. 493, to reauthorize and improve the SBIR and STTR programs, and for other purposes; which was ordered to lie on the table; as follows:

At the end, add the following:
SEC. 4. AGENCY ASSESSMENT OF SIGNIFICANT REGULATORY ACTIONS.
(a) Definitions.--In this section--
(1) the term "Administrator" means the Administrator of the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs in the Office of Management and Budget;
(2) the term "agency" has the same meaning as in section 3502(1) of title 44, United States Code;
(3) the term "disseminated"--
(A) means prepared by an agency and distributed to the public or regulated entities; and
(B) does not include--
(i) distribution limited to Federal Government employees;
(ii) intra- or interagency use or sharing of Federal Government information; and
(iii) responses to requests for agency records under section 552 of title 5, United States Code (commonly referred to as the "Freedom of Information Act"), section 552a of title 5, United States Code, (commonly referred to as the "Privacy Act"), the Federal Advisory Committee Act (5 U.S.C. App.), or other similar laws;
(4) the term "guidance document" means an agency statement of general applicability and future effect, other than a regulatory action, that sets forth a policy on a statutory, regulatory or technical issue or an interpretation of a statutory or regulatory issue;
(5) the term "regulation" means an agency statement of general applicability and future effect, which the agency intends to have the force and effect of law, that is designed to implement, interpret, or prescribe law or policy or to describe the procedure or practice requirements of an agency;
(6) the term "regulatory action" means any substantive action by an agency (normally published in the Federal Register) that promulgates or is expected to lead to the promulgation of a final regulation, including notices of inquiry, advance notices of proposed rulemaking, and notices of proposed rulemaking;
(7) the term "significant guidance document"--
(A) means a guidance document disseminated to regulated entities or the general public that may reasonably be anticipated to--
(i) lead to an annual effect on the economy of $ 100,000,000 or more or affect in a material way the economy, a sector of the economy, productivity, competition, jobs, the environment, public health or safety, or State, local, or tribal governments or communities;
(ii) create a serious inconsistency or otherwise interfere with an action taken or planned by another agency;
(iii) materially alter the budgetary impact of entitlements, grants, user fees, or loan programs or the rights and obligations of recipients thereof; or
(iv) raise novel legal or policy issues arising out of legal mandates and the priorities, principles, and provisions of this section; and
(B) does not include--
(i) legal advisory opinions for internal Executive Branch use and not for release (such as Department of Justice Office of Legal Counsel opinions);
(ii) briefs and other positions taken by agencies in investigations, pre-litigation, litigation, or other enforcement proceedings;
(iii) speeches;
(iv) editorials;
(v) media interviews;
(vi) press materials;
(vii) congressional correspondence;
(viii) guidance documents that pertain to a military or foreign affairs function of the United States (other than guidance on procurement or the import or export of non-defense articles and services);
(ix) grant solicitations;
(x) warning letters;
(xi) case or investigatory letters responding to complaints involving fact-specific determinations;
(xii) purely internal agency policies;
(xiii) guidance documents that pertain to the use, operation or control of a government facility;
(xiv) internal guidance documents directed solely to other agencies; and
(xv) any other category of significant guidance documents exempted by an agency head in consultation with the Administrator; and
(8) the term "significant regulatory action" means any regulatory action that is likely to result in a regulation that may--
(A) have an annual effect on the economy of $100,000,000 or more or adversely affect in a material way the economy, a sector of the economy, productivity, competition, jobs, the environment, public health or safety, or State, local, or tribal governments or communities;
(B) create a serious inconsistency or otherwise interfere with an action taken or planned by another agency;
(C) materially alter the budgetary impact of entitlements, grants, user fees, or loan programs or the rights and obligations of recipients thereof; or
(D) raise novel legal or policy issues arising out of legal mandates and the priorities, principles, and provisions of this section.
(b) Agency Assessment of Significant Regulatory Actions.--For each significant regulatory action, each agency shall submit, at such times specified by the Administrator, a report to the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs that includes--
(1) an assessment, including the underlying analysis, of benefits anticipated from the significant regulatory action, such as--
(A) the promotion of the efficient functioning of the economy and private markets;
(B) the enhancement of health and safety;
(C) the protection of the natural environment; and
(D) the elimination or reduction of discrimination or bias;
(2) to the extent feasible, a quantification of the benefits assessed under paragraph (1);
(3) an assessment, including the underlying analysis, of costs anticipated from the regulatory action, such as--
(A) the direct cost both to the Federal Government in administering the significant regulatory action and to businesses, consumers, and others (including State, local, and tribal officials) in complying with the regulation; and
(B) any adverse effects on the efficient functioning of the economy, private markets (including productivity, employment, and competitiveness), health, safety, the natural environment, job creation, the prices of consumer goods, and energy costs;
(4) to the extent feasible, a quantification of the costs assessed under paragraph (3); and
(5) an assessment, including the underlying analysis, of costs and benefits of potentially effective and reasonably feasible alternatives to the planned significant regulatory action, identified by the agency or the public (including improving the current regulation and reasonably viable nonregulatory actions), and an explanation why the planned regulatory action is preferable to the identified potential alternatives.


(As printed in the Congressional Record for the Senate on Mar 15, 2011.)