Senator Gaines Introduces Legislation to Reduce Government Regulation

Senator Ted Gaines, R—Roseville, today announced that he has partnered with the Small Business Economic Impact Alliance to introduce legislation that would reduce and streamline the number of state regulations on the books, making it less costly and easier to retain and create jobs in California.

“Overregulation is making it much harder for employers to invest in California and create and retain jobs here, crippling our economic growth,” Gaines said. “With more and more businesses and jobs leaving California because of costly regulations imposed on them by the state, it is vital the Legislature do all we can to make our business climate competitive and bring back jobs.”

Modeled after a successful effort in the Canadian province of British Columbia, Senate Bill 591 would force bureaucrats to permanently reduce the number of state regulations by 33 percent. It would also create a 10-year moratorium on increases in the net number of regulations. Any new regulations imposed by state agencies must be accompanied by the repeal of another regulation.

Those new regulations would then face a much more stringent review process. The Office of Administrative Law currently enforces the Administrative Procedure Act, which sets six standards that regulations must satisfy (CA Gov. Code section 11349). Senate Bill 591 would add a seventh standard – “burden” – to the existing list. This means that if an agency rejects a less burdensome regulatory approach, the regulation may be disapproved by the Office of Administrative Law or by the courts.

Just a few years ago, British Columbia was one of the most heavily-regulated provinces in all of Canada, with 383,000 regulations on the books. To date, British Columbia has slashed 42 percent of its regulations, cutting 165,000 regulatory requirements.

“British Columbia has become one of Canada’s economic growth leaders because of their commitment to reducing regulations and implementing pro-jobs economic policies,” Gaines said. “We can take many of the lessons we have learned from British Columbia and apply them right here to our state. By acting now to consolidate one-third of our regulations, we can help encourage investment and growth the same way and get Californians working again.”

Gaines said that state government needs to get out of the way and allow businesses to spend their time on the development and success of their business.

“As a small business owner myself, I know firsthand how costly and difficult it is to comply with regulation after regulation just to keep my doors open,” Gaines said. “California has long been the hub of innovate business and economic development. Endless piles of paperwork and hidden fees should not dissuade people from starting new small businesses in California. My bill will help encourage job and business growth and make it easier for people to do business in our state.”