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Memorandum on Agency Rulemaking Procedures

September 30, 1993

Memorandum for Heads of Departments and Agencies

Subject: Agency Rulemaking Procedures

Today, I issued an Executive order setting forth the Administration's regulatory philosophy; defining a more effective and accountable role for the Executive Office of the President in regulatory planning and review; and establishing the procedures to be followed by agencies and the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs ("OIRA") in promulgating and reviewing regulations. One primary objective of this order is to streamline the regulatory review process, thus reducing the delay in the developing and promulgating rules.

We cannot, however, reduce delay in the rulemaking process without reforms within the agencies themselves. The National Performance Review team examining the issue found that many agencies require numerous clearances within the agency before a rule is submitted to OIRA for review. (Indeed, one agency found that its internal review process could only be described by using an 18-foot flow chart.) The team also learned that too often agencies use the same internal review procedures for all rules—regardless of their complexity or significance.

In order to streamline the entire rulemaking process, agencies must, consistent with any applicable laws, utilize internally the most efficient method of developing and reviewing regulations. Accordingly, I direct the head of each agency and department to examine its internal review procedures to determine whether, and if so, how those procedures can be improved and streamlined. In conducting this examination, the agency or department shall consider the number of clearances required by its review process and whether the review process varies according to the complexity or significance of a rule.

I further direct the head of each agency and department to submit to the Vice President and me, within 6 months of this memorandum, the results of its examination.


William J. Clinton, Memorandum on Agency Rulemaking Procedures Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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