There is considerable scope to improve the way that regulations are developed and scrutinised by all governments, according to this draft report.
In Regulatory Impact Analysis: Benchmarking - a report requested by COAG - the Productivity Commission compares the regulatory impact analysis processes of the Commonwealth, States and Territories and COAG, and identifies leading practices.
Where regulatory impact analysis is undertaken, the Commission found that there is often a gap between the agreed best practice principles and what happens in practice. Government proposals with the largest impacts on communities are often not rigorously scrutinised.
In all jurisdictions, greater commitment to transparency and accountability would improve the efficacy and rigour of policy development. In particular:
- reducing opportunities to avoid assessment by tightening exemptions
- publishing all regulation impact statements and compliance assessments by oversight agencies
- requiring Ministers to provide reasons to Parliament for proceeding with proposals that have not been subjected to adequate impact analysis
- ensuring that post implementation reviews of non-compliant and exempt proposals are independently conducted.
The Commission seeks comment on this draft report in order to develop its final report to the Government by the end of November.
This draft report was released on 31 August 2012 to assist participants in preparing a submission to the commissioned study into Regulatory Impact Analysis: Benchmarking.
You are invited to examine this draft and provide written comment. The deadline for all written responses is Friday 5 October 2012.