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Prospects for Regulatory Reform in 2011

Engage Volume 11, Issue 1, June 2011
By Susan E. Dudley
June 03, 2011

Though regulations affect every aspect of our lives, as a policy tool they rarely reach the attention of voters (and consequently of elected officials) because, unlike their spending cousins, their effects are often not visible. Like the direct government spending that is supported by taxes, regulations are designed to achieve social goals, but the costs of regulations are hidden in higher prices paid for goods and services and in opportunities foregone. Americans concerned about high taxes or the growing deficit would probably be surprised to know that, according to the federal government’s Small Business Administration Office of Advocacy, each household paid, on average, $15,586 in 2008 to comply with federal regulations...