April 1, 2015

Bill Allowing Lawmakers to Alter Agency Rules Dies

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CAPITOL WATCH State Capitol Photo 1

M. Scott Carter

M. Scott Carter

M. Scott Carter reports on politics, legislation and other issues from the State Capitol.

 

 

A bill that gives the Legislature the authority to dramatically alter state agency rules and regulations probably won’t be heard this session. The measure failed to receive enough votes in the House Administrative Rules Committee.

Senate Bill 308 would have allowed the Legislature to alter any ruled developed through the Administrative Procedures Act.  Under current law, the Legislature can vote only to approve or disapprove an agency’s rules, once the rules have been vetted by the governor’s office and the agency.

Critics said SB 308 would give the legislature too much power to change agency rules after the rules had been examined.

“The rules used by our agency are developed under a very rigorous process,” said Scott Thompson, executive director of the Department of Environmental Quality. “The draft rule goes to governor’s office, then the DEQ council that oversees the are covered by the rule, then the DEQ board, then to the governor’s office again and then the Legislature. It can take a year and a half to go through the entire process.”

Written by Sen. Nathan Dahm, R-Broken Arrow, SB 308 failed on a 3-4 committee vote.