House Passes Woodall Amendment to Increase Transparency and Accountability in EPA Rulemaking

August 1, 2013
Press Release

On Thursday, the House passed H.R. 1582, the “Energy Consumers Relief Act,” which requires a full accounting of the effects of any major rule proposed by EPA be submitted to Congress and provides a mechanism for the Secretary of Energy to prohibit the promulgation of any rule that would yield a significant adverse effect on the economy. Woodall contends that the increase in cost that follows the increase in regulations will not be borne by the big corporations, rather it will be families across the 7th district and the rest of America who will pick up the tab for these new rules.  At a time when millions of Americans can’t find jobs, and millions more are working overtime just to pay their bills, America must ensure that the costs of any new regulation are justified by the benefits.

Upon passage, Woodall stated, “Frankly, it shouldn’t take legislation in the House to prevent this Administration from imposing rules that cause serious economic harm to families who can least afford it,” said Woodall.  “Rules that will halt responsible American energy production, for example, simply run counter to common sense, notwithstanding the fact that radical environmental interests continue to wage war against American energy.  By measuring the costs and the benefits of each new rule, we can ensure that American taxpayers and American families always come out on top.”

During debate on the bill, the House also accepted an amendment authored by Representative Woodall requiring that the EPA make publicly available on its website all data and documents used to develop estimates in its report to Congress.  Woodall’s amendment requires that in addition to describing how the EPA arrived at their estimates, they also must show the American people what information they used to arrive at those estimates.  Woodall said, “This bill is about transparency at its core, and my amendment simply goes one step further to ensure that the American people can hold their federal government accountable both for the decisions it makes and its methods for making those decisions.”

Woodall went on to say, “The underlying bill is a positive step toward acknowledging the burdens of an overreaching bureaucracy that’s putting Americans out of work and hiking energy costs.  My amendment takes the bill one step further to ensure that the American people have access to the same information as EPA rule makers.  Americans should reject the status quo of unelected bureaucrats writing costly rules behind closed doors and then refusing to disclose their sources of information.  My amendment ensures that will no longer happen, and I appreciate my colleagues’ support from both sides of the aisle.”

Woodall represents the Seventh Congressional District of Georgia, which includes the majority of Gwinnett and Forsyth counties.