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PRINTER'S NO. 203
THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF PENNSYLVANIA
SENATE BILL
No.
233
Session of
2021
INTRODUCED BY PHILLIPS-HILL, BROOKS, SCAVELLO, MARTIN, J. WARD,
DiSANTO, GORDNER, MASTRIANO, REGAN AND DUSH,
FEBRUARY 16, 2021
REFERRED TO INTERGOVERNMENTAL OPERATIONS, FEBRUARY 16, 2021
AN ACT
Amending the act of June 25, 1982 (P.L.633, No.181), entitled
"An act providing for independent oversight and review of
regulations, creating an Independent Regulatory Review
Commission, providing for its powers and duties and making
repeals," further providing for definitions and for existing
regulations; and establishing the Independent Office of the
Repealer and providing for its power and duties.
The General Assembly of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania
hereby enacts as follows:
Section 1. Section 3 of the act of June 25, 1982 (P.L.633,
No.181), known as the Regulatory Review Act, is amended by
adding definitions to read:
Section 3. Definitions.
The following words and phrases when used in this act shall
have, unless the context clearly indicates otherwise, the
meanings given to them in this section:
* * *
"Director." The director of the office.
* * *
"Office." The Independent Office of the Repealer.
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* * *
"Selection committee." The Selection and Organization
Committee in the office.
* * *
Section 2. Section 8.1 of the act is amended to read:
Section 8.1. Existing regulations.
The commission, on its motion or at the request of any person
or member of the General Assembly, may review any existing
regulation which has been in effect for at least three years. If
a committee of the Senate or the House of Representatives
requests a review of an existing regulation, the commission
shall perform the review and shall assign it high priority. The
commission may submit recommendations to an agency recommending
changes in existing regulations if it finds the existing
regulations to be contrary to the public interest under the
criteria established in section 5.2. The commission may also
make recommendations to the General Assembly and the Governor
for statutory changes if the commission finds that any existing
regulation may be contrary to the public interest. Unless
prohibited by the laws of this Commonwealth, at the time an
agency promulgates a new regulation, the agency shall identify
at least two existing regulations for repeal.
Section 3. The act is amended by adding a section to read:
Section 12.2. Independent Office of the Repealer.
(a) There is established a nonpartisan Independent Office of
the Repealer within the Independent Regulatory Review
Commission.
(b) The office shall have the following powers and duties:
(1) Adopt logical, quantitative and qualitative rules to
determine whether an existing statute or regulation of the
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Commonwealth is:
(i) Unreasonable, unduly burdensome, detrimental to
economic well-being, duplicative, onerous, defective or
in conflict with another statute or regulation.
(ii) Defying a common sense approach to government.
(2) Perform a systematic review of existing statutes and
regulations of this Commonwealth in accordance with the rules
adopted for review under this act.
(3) Identify existing statutes and regulations that may
be appropriate for legislative and executive agency
modification, revision or repeal.
(4) Establish as soon as practical a system with a
publicly accessible Internet website that allows the office
to receive:
(i) Suggestions and comments, along with supporting
documentation, for modification, revision or repeal from
citizens, businesses, government agencies or others.
(ii) Reports on allegations of wasteful governmental
practices.
(5) Determine and implement internal policies, standards
and procedures as may be necessary for the orderly and
efficient execution of the mission of the office.
(6) Implement a tracking system to follow all
submissions and actions taken on a recommendation made by the
director which includes progress of modification, revision or
repeal.
(7) By June 30 of each year, report to the General
Assembly and the Governor on:
(i) Recommended changes to statutes and regulations.
(ii) Recommended changes to increase efficiency and
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eliminate wasteful practices.
(iii) Progress of the revision, repeal or abrogation
of statutes and regulations.
(c) The committee established in the office shall:
(1) Consist of the following members:
(i) One member appointed by the Governor.
(ii) One member appointed by the President pro
tempore of the Senate in consultation with the Majority
Leader and the Minority Leader of the Senate.
(iii) One member appointed by the Speaker of the
House of Representatives in consultation with the
Majority Leader and the Minority Leader of the House of
Representatives.
(2) Select the director of the office in accordance with
the following:
(i) The committee shall provide the qualifications
of the director to the Legislative Reference Bureau for
publication in the Pennsylvania Bulletin within 90 days
of the first meeting of the committee.
(ii) The appointment may not be made on the basis of
political affiliation.
(iii) The appointment shall be made on the basis of
the fitness to perform the duties of the office based on
the published qualifications.
(d) The director shall serve in accordance with the
following:
(1) The selection of the director shall occur no later
than 30 days from the effective date of this section.
(2) The director shall serve for a term of six years.
(3) An individual appointed as director to fill a
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vacancy prior to the expiration of a term shall only serve
for the unexpired portion of the term.
(e) The director shall appoint a deputy director who shall
have the following duties:
(1) Perform assigned duties from the director.
(2) Assume the role of the director:
(i) during an absence or incapacity of the director;
or
(ii) if a vacancy occurs in the position of director
until a successor director is appointed.
(f) The director may be removed by a concurrent resolution
passed by the Senate and the House of Representatives.
(g) The director shall have the following powers and duties:
(1) The authority to:
(i) Determine and implement internal policies,
standards and protocols to orderly and efficiently carry
out the mission of the office under this section.
(ii) Procure the temporary or intermittent service
of attorneys, experts, consultants or organizations by
contract.
(2) Hire and fix compensation in accordance with the
following:
(i) The hiring and appointments shall be made on the
basis of the duties of the office and the performance of
the functions of the office.
(ii) All personnel shall be hired or appointed
without regard to political affiliation.
(iii) Hiring and appointments shall be based on
fitness to perform the necessary duties.
(h) (1) When the office determines that a statute or
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regulation meets the standards set under this section and as
set by the director for modification, revision or repeal, the
director shall recommend the action to:
(i) The General Assembly if a statute needs to be
modified, revised or repealed.
(ii) The State department or agency that promulgated
the regulation that needs to be modified, revised or
repealed.
(2) A recommendation from the office shall provide
specific details why the office is recommending that the
statute or regulation needs to be modified, revised or
repealed.
(i) The office shall be a Commonwealth agency for the
purposes of the act of February 14, 2008 (P.L.6, No.3), known as
the "Right-to-Know Law."
(j) This act shall expire five years from the effective date
of this section.
Section 4. This act shall take effect immediately.
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