Collins' Sunshine Bill Passes Judiciary Committee

Jul 12, 2017
Press Release

WASHINGTON—Today, the House Judiciary Committee passed H.R. 469, the Sunshine for Regulatory Decrees and Settlements Act, paving the way for the House to consider the bill. Introduced by Congressman Doug Collins (R-Ga.), the Sunshine Act inhibits the ability of federal agencies to participate in secretive sue-and-settle arrangements with special interest groups. Such arrangements circumvent established regulatory processes and unilaterally enact new policies without providing opportunity for public comment.

Under previous administrations, federal agencies like the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) increasingly turned to consent decrees as a means of circumventing Congress, realigning regulatory priorities and establishing new rules that affect American workers and families. Agencies can carry out sue-and-settle litigation without public notice, and over 100 such regulations were handed down during the former administration, at an estimated annual cost of more than $100 billion.

“It’s past time to inject transparency into the relationship between federal agencies and special interest groups who have improperly used lawsuits to influence the regulatory landscape,” said Collins.

“As the Judiciary Committee passes the Sunshine for Regulatory Decrees and Settlements Act, President Trump and Secretary Pruitt have also committed publicly to ending sue-and-settle maneuvers. Together, I believe we can replace mischief with transparency in the federal rulemaking process and bring relief to the American workers and families who have suffered as a result of these back-door deals.”

More information about the Sunshine for Regulatory Decrees and Settlements Act is available here.