"Public Good Regulation" is Smarter than "Smart Regulation"

Collection of submissions and summary materials on federal regulatory reform proposals

CELA has followed closely the federal government’s “smart regulation” initiative making several interventions and submissions to the External Advisory Committee on Smart Regulation (EACSR), which was appointed in 2003 and reported to the prime minister in September 2004.

The EACSR’s final report advises the federal government to continue a twenty year trend towards reducing its capacity to protect against hazards to health, safety and the environment. Budget cutting, tax relief, "regulatory efficiency," and the push to shrink the size of government now have a new name: "Smart Regulation." This ambiguous term originally meant the use of a mixture of policy instruments in combination with enforceable regulations. However, under the heavy influence of industry lobbyists, it has been twisted to mean "economic competitiveness", and measures that will further weaken governmental capacity and accountability.

CELA wrote to the prime minister on October 22, 2004 (see linked letter below) summarizing public interest community concerns about the EACSR report and urging the government "to halt smart regulation implementation until a national consensus is achieved on the appropriate direction for the policy."

In the wake of Walkerton and SARS, CELA is critical of proposals that will weaken government’s ability to protect the public against health, safety and environmental hazards. CELA will therefore continue to monitor the implementation of the EACSR’s proposals. The following collection includes reports, correspondence, media releases and other publications relevant to this topic.