A Guide for Government Agencies: How to Comply with the Regulatory Flexibility Act

Implementing the President's Small Business Agenda and Executive Order 13272, June 2010


Economic freedom is the foundation for individual success and prosperity. This freedom is evident in the entrepreneurial small business sector, which creates most of the new jobs and a large share of the innovations in the American economy. When government takes small businesses into consideration in developing regulations, it saves time and money for the nation’s most productive sector.
Executive Order 13272, signed August 13, 2002, gave federal agencies new direction in their efforts to assess the impact of their proposed rulemakings on small businesses and other small organizations under the Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA). It also directed the Small Business Administration’s Office of Advocacy to provide agencies with information on how to comply with the President’s directive.
This compliance guide, prepared with input from regulatory agencies, is designed to be used by agency rule writers and policy analysts as a step-by-step manual for complying with the RFA. A careful review of the requirements is recommended before policy analysts begin to draft regulations, and then again at each stage of the process.
The Office of Advocacy continues to provide training to agency personnel in RFA compliance and has worked with many agencies since the executive order was signed. Advocacy welcomes additional opportunities to assist in new phases of training.
Thanks to all who contributed by reviewing and commenting on this guide. Further suggestions for improvements are welcome. For more information about the RFA and E.O. 13272, call us at (202) 205­-6533.
To those charged to carry out the nation’s regulatory flexibility requirements, the Office of Advocacy offers its strong support and encouragement. You have a crucial role in keeping the nation on track for sustained economic growth by ensuring the continued strength of the resilient small business sector.

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