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Cutting Red Tape: The Work Continues

The first year of Donald Trump’s presidency saw major progress on efforts to diminish the effects of excessive regulation on American industry. But many regulatory challenges remain. NAHB will work with the Trump Administration in 2018 as it continues to move toward a more sensible regulatory environment. Trump Administration officials recently reached out to NAHB to ask for examples of regulations that are still slowing the housing industry. NAHB responded with a list of seven key regulations that need to be addressed. These included OSHA’s silica rule, the Department of Labor’s multi-employer policy, and the EPA/Corps’ wetlands permitting process. “Excessive, overlapping regulations have been slowing home builders and other small businesses for years,” says NAHB Chairman Randy Noel. “The Trump Administration has taken steps to address the problem, and has made real progress. We look forward to working with the President and federal agencies to reduce the burden of ill-considered regulations on American enterprise, and to re-establish our ability to provide decent and affordable housing to all Americans.” On average, regulations and fees imposed by government at all levels account for nearly 25% of the final price of a new, single-family home. Complying with regulations is even more challenging for home building firms because the majority are small businesses with limited staff and financial resources. These entrepreneurs must secure a variety of permits and approvals, work with multiple agencies and regulators, and comply with a constricting web of regulatory requirements at all levels of government. These requirements affect every aspect of the land development and home building process, creating delays and adding costs that ultimately make new homes less affordable. In addition to the cost and effort associated with complying with individual regulations, the cumulative burden associated with multiple, duplicative and onerous regulation is overwhelming. President Trump continues to deliver on his campaign theme of reducing regulations. During his first year in office, the federal government: Rolled back the onerous Waters of the U.S. rule Rescinded the Federal Flood Risk Management Standard Withdrew the EPA Clean Power Rules on greenhouse gas emissions Rescinded DOL guidance on joint employer status and independent contractors Withdrew the EPA Post‐Construction Stormwater Rule Although the housing industry enjoyed real progress in 2017, much work remains. NAHB will continue to work with the administration and Congress to reduce the regulatory burden on the housing industry.

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