New Report Calls for Strategic Reforms to Improve Regulation in Utah

The Salt Lake Chamber released a new report which outlines suggestions on how the state can improve Utah’s premier business climate through regulation reform.

The report, titled: “The Cost of Doing Business: Improving Utah’s Regulatory System” details limitations within Utah’s existing administrative rules process and important areas where the state has room for improvement.

“Regulation reform is among the easiest and simplest ways policymakers can influence economic growth,” said Lane Beattie, president and CEO of the Salt Lake Chamber. “To the state’s credit, Utah continues to gain national praise, including Forbes’ ‘Best State for Business’ over six of the past seven years. These accolades come because of a commitment to continuously improve – even in areas where we excel. We look forward to working with the Governor and Legislature in this spirit to keep Utah’s regulatory climate among the best in the nation.”

Utah business leaders have become increasingly concerned that our exemplary business climate may deteriorate because of complacency caused by favorable national rankings. A decline in specific metrics of Utah’s business climate shows these concerns are warranted, in large part to other states surpassing our efforts. In 2011, Utah conducted one of the most thorough regulation reviews in the nation. However, Utah’s regulatory structure is becoming outdated as 21 states have adopted more robust analyses of their regulations. As every state subject to many of the same federal regulations, proactively addressing our state’s regulatory structure is necessary to retain Utah’s competitive edge.

To respond to this concern, the Chamber developed tangible reforms to produce more effective and fair regulations. The most important of these reforms seeks to improve the process of analyzing and mitigating impacts of administrative rules on Utah’s business. Specifically, more than 48% of Utah’s rules impact business, but less than 3% of rules in 2015 had a robust analysis performed on their potential cost to businesses. Without better analysis, there is no method for understanding what Utah’s rules cost our economy.

Key areas of reform included in the report are: better evaluation on the costs of Utah’s rules to individuals, businesses and our economy; reforms that will stop unnecessary regulations; improving transparency and oversight of Utah’s rules; and, achieving a national model through considering a more robust analysis on the costs and benefits of rules. The report is avaiable at: