Regulatory DevelopmentsFebruary 3, 2017
Representative Markwayne Mullin (R-OK) on February 1, 2017, introduced a resolution (H.J. Res. 59) under the CRA to repeal the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) final rule revising its Risk Management Plan (RMP) program. EPA promulgated the final RMP rule on January 13, 2017, in response to Executive Order 13650, which required EPA and other federal agencies to improve chemical facility safety and security. 82 Fed. Reg. 4594. The CRA allows Congress to pass disapproval resolutions on simple majority votes in the House and Senate to reverse discretionary rules promulgated within 60 legislative days of their actions. In a statement, Mullin stated: “Predictably, the Obama Administration continued to issue harmful and overreaching regulations until the bitter end . . . EPA’s RMP rule is no exception. It trades safety for paperwork and delivers far more burden than benefit for businesses that have to abide by it. The RMP rule wraps our businesses up in more bureaucratic red tape and makes it more difficult for them to keep their doors open, risking not only safety but also valuable jobs. This joint resolution provides much needed relief.” The resolution has broad support from industry trade groups; it has been endorsed by the Agricultural Retailers Association, American Chemistry Council, American Coatings Association, American Forest & Paper Association, American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers, American Petroleum Institute, Corn Refiners Association, Environmental Technology Council, The Fertilizer Institute, Global Cold Chain Alliance, International Association of Refrigerated Warehouses, International Institute of Ammonia Refrigeration, International Liquid Terminals Association, Institute of Makers of Explosives, International Warehouse Logistics Association, Louisiana Chemical Association, National Association of Chemical Distributors, National Association of Manufacturers, Society of Chemical Manufacturers and Affiliates, U.S. Chamber of Commerce, and The Vinyl Institute. Despite the support, it is unclear whether H.J. Res. 59 will be provided any floor time in the House for a vote.