"EPA: Wary of Democratic Victories, Agency Rushes To Finish Rules"

"EPA is scrambling to finalize as many rules as possible by the middle of May to prevent Democrats from undoing them if they take control of the Senate and White House next year, according to experts who follow the agency's rulemakings.

Agency officials hope to make it impossible for a Democratic administration and Congress to employ the Congressional Review Act, which can be used to cancel Trump-era rules at EPA and other agencies. The law allows for resolutions of disapproval to pass the Senate with a simple majority vote. Once that occurs, an agency can bypass the usual procedures of proposal and public comment required to rescind a rule, which can take years.

It also bars a future administration from promulgating a similar rule without new consent from Congress.

But the law applies only to regulations that became final in the last 60 legislative days of the previous Congress. The unpredictability of Congress' legislative calendar in an election year makes it hard to nail down the exact date the 60-day threshold will elapse, but EPA is said to be working with a May 20 timeline."

Jean Chemnick reports for ClimateWire March 4, 2020.

Source: ClimateWire, 03/05/2020