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The Obama Administration: January 17-31, 2011

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This article is the 49th in a continuing series chronicling the unfolding history of the Obama Administration. The writer's opinions are not offered, leaving the readers to arrive at their own conclusions.

" Now, ultimately the future of Egypt will be determined by the Egyptian people.  And I believe that the Egyptian people want the same things that we all want -- a better life for ourselves and our children, and a government that is fair and just and responsive.  Put simply, the Egyptian people want a future that befits the heirs to a great and ancient civilization ."__Barack Obama, President of the United States of America, January 28, 2011

Day693/Jan17th/Monday: T he President and First Lady Michelle Obama participated in a community service project at the Stuart Hobson Middle School in the Washington, D.C. in celebration of the Martin Luther King, Jr. Day of Service and in honor of Dr. King's life and legacy. The President provided remarks.   Transcript Video

The President and First Lady Michelle Obama celebrated Mrs. Obama's 47th birthday with dinner at a Wolfgang Puck eaterie called "The Source," located at The Newseum. Source

Day694/Jan18th/Tuesday: The President signed an Executive Order requiring Federal agencies to design cost-effective, evidence-based regulations compatible with economic growth, job creation, and competitiveness:

-                      Cost-effective and Cost-Justified : Consistent with law, Agencies must consider costs and benefits and choose the least burdensome path

-                      Transparent : The regulatory process must be transparent and include public participation, with an opportunity for the public to comment

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-                      Coordinated and Simplified : Agencies must attempt to coordinate, simplify, and harmonize regulations to reduce costs and promote certainty for businesses and the public

-                      Flexible : Agencies must consider approaches that maintain freedom of choice and flexibility, including disclosure of relevant information to the public

-                      Science-driven : Regulations must be guided by objective scientific evidence.

-                      Necessary and Up-to-Date : Existing regulations must be reviewed to determine that they are still necessary and crafted effectively to solve current problems. If they are outdated, they must be changed or repealed

The President issued a Presidential Memorandum requiring Federal enforcement agencies to make publicly-available compliance information easily accessible, downloadable, and searchable online.

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The President issued a Presidential Memorandum that directed executive departments and agencies and request independent agencies, when initiating rulemaking that would have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities, to give serious consideration to whether and how it is appropriate, consistent with law and regulatory objectives, to reduce regulatory burdens on small businesses, through increased flexibility, including: 

1) extended compliance dates that takes into account the resources available to small entities

2) performance standards rather than design standards

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Retired, Robert Arend was president of an AFSCME local from 1997-2007.

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