Unleashing Prosperity

Grant Details

Grantee Name:
 James Broughel
 Mercatus Center
Country: United States

Project Name:
 Unleashing Prosperity by Cutting State Regulations
Funding Year: 2019

Project period: 2 years

Unleashing Prosperity by Cutting State Regulations

US states have dozens of bureaucratic agencies generating new regulations, but few review the thousands of regulations that are already in place. Over time, these regulations have accumulated into vast codes too complex for people to navigate. Rules that are costly, complicated, ineffective, or outdated remain in force, stifling economic growth. Unlike the federal government, state agencies are not typically required to conduct benefit-cost analysis prior to rule-making, and they internalize few costs from creating increasingly more complex and onerous requirements.
Over the last few years, scholars from the Mercatus Center at George Mason University have researched successful efforts to repeal regulations to limit the compliance burden on citizens and businesses, and have assisted policymakers in seven US states in starting “red tape reduction” initiatives. These efforts are assisted by RegData, a Mercatus-developed software program that rapidly analyzes immense regulatory codes in ways not previously possible. Mercatus is using RegData to produce academic studies that give a “snapshot” of a state’s regulatory burden. The vision for this project is that armed with Mercatus’ groundbreaking research, states will reduce the burden of their regulatory requirements and create improved environments for economic growth, income mobility, and individual freedom. 

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