The news about the state’s periodic review and examination of existing administrative rules has taken an even more encouraging turn.

sunset progress March 2016

This particular reform comes from the Regulatory Reform Act of 2013. It’s one that I and my colleagues at the John Locke Foundation championed, and here’s why.

The bulk of economic literature shows that regulation is harmful to the economy. Cutting red tape and clearing out overregulation would therefore have beneficial effects for economic growth.

Sunset provisions with periodic review was found by researchers at Mercatus to have a “robustly statistically significant” effect in reducing a state’s regulatory burden — and consequentially an economically significant effect as well.

I’ve written previous updates on state rules weeded out thanks to this reform (see the graph above). Today, however, Carolina Journal has some new good news:

The Department of Health and Human Services is seeking repeal of six unnecessary certificate-of-need rules to reduce the regulatory burden on medical diagnostic centers and purchase of major medical equipment. Some health care experts welcome the reduced red tape, but say the changes don’t go far enough.

The proposal, which would be effective Dec. 1, is the latest example of the impact of regulatory reforms put in place by the Republican-led General Assembly. About 6,225 administrative rules have been reviewed throughout state government, and 690 are slated to be eliminated, while others are still under review for possible sunsetting.

“North Carolina’s Administrative Procedure Act mandates periodic review of all rules. The repeal of the CON rules is, in part, a response to that mandate,” said DHHS spokeswoman Kate Murphy. The agency has repealed 86 CON rules effective Feb. 1.

As readers here know, North Carolina’s extensive CON regulations are one of biggest remaining obstacles to the state becoming truly First in Freedom.