Good Government

Ray Carter | January 9, 2020

Stitt plans significant state deregulation

Ray Carter

Gov. Kevin Stitt says he wants to slash state regulations by the end of his term in 2023.

Speaking to attendees of an Oklahoma City luncheon hosted by the Petroleum Alliance of Oklahoma, Stitt said regulatory reform is going to be “one of my big focuses” in 2020.

“My goal is to have a 25-percent reduction in regulations by the end of my term,” Stitt said.

The governor noted that President Trump issued an executive order early in his administration that required federal agencies to repeal two regulations for every new one added. The results have exceeded that goal.

“The federal regulations, they’ve actually removed eight for every one that they’ve added in his administration, and it’s really unleashed the economy,” Stitt said.

The governor said he plans to issue a similar order at the state level, and the project will include a website where Oklahomans can suggest specific regulations to repeal.

He noted that Oklahoma has far more regulations than several neighboring states.

“To give you a comparison, Oklahoma has twice as many regulations as the state of Kansas, 15 to 20 percent more than New Mexico and Missouri,” Stitt said.

When James Broughel, an economist at the Mercatus Center at George Mason University, analyzed federal and state regulatory codes to identify key imperative terms like “must,” “shall,” and “required,” he found that Oklahoma state regulations contained 145,296 such terms. That was well above the national average of roughly 131,000 and placed Oklahoma in the upper third of states in regulatory burden.

Stitt predicted that slashing unnecessary, outmoded, and burdensome regulations will provide fuel to job creation.

“We’re going to unleash our economy, our businesses,” Stitt said.

[Correction: An earlier version of this story incorrectly stated that Gov. Stitt’s first term ends in 2022. It ends in January 2023.]

Ray Carter Director, Center for Independent Journalism

Ray Carter

Director, Center for Independent Journalism

Ray Carter is the director of OCPA’s Center for Independent Journalism. He has two decades of experience in journalism and communications. He previously served as senior Capitol reporter for The Journal Record, media director for the Oklahoma House of Representatives, and chief editorial writer at The Oklahoman. As a reporter for The Journal Record, Carter received 12 Carl Rogan Awards in four years—including awards for investigative reporting, general news reporting, feature writing, spot news reporting, business reporting, and sports reporting. While at The Oklahoman, he was the recipient of several awards, including first place in the editorial writing category of the Associated Press/Oklahoma News Executives Carl Rogan Memorial News Excellence Competition for an editorial on the history of racism in the Oklahoma legislature.

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