Remarks Announcing the Establishment of the Presidential Task Force on Regulatory Relief

January 22, 1981

Well, ladies and gentlemen, I have a statement here that I want to make.

The regulatory reform, as you know, we've been talking about for a long time is one of the keystones in our program to return the nation to prosperity and to set loose again the ingenuity and energy of the American people.

Government regulations impose an enormous burden on large and small businesses in America, discourage productivity, and contribute substantially to our current economic woes. To cut away the thicket of irrational and senseless regulations requires careful study, close coordination between the agencies and bureaus in the Federal structure.

Therefore, I am announcing today my intention to establish a Presidential Task Force on Regulatory Relief, a task force that will review pending regulations, study past regulations with an eye toward revising them, and recommend appropriate legislative remedies.

I intend that this be more than just another Presidential task force that files a report and is soon forgotten. We're seeking real reform and tangible results. And accomplishing this will take a vigorous leader, talented administrator, and absolutely, no doubt, a superb diplomat. And that person is Vice President George Bush, who's agreed to serve as Chairman of this task force and to coordinate an interagency effort to end excessive regulation.

I've asked him to get back to me promptly with recommended members of the task force and a detailed plan for its operations. And our goal is going to be to see if we cannot reverse the trend of recent years and see at the end of the year a reduction in the number of pages in the Federal Register instead of an increase.

And now I'm not taking any questions, and I'm going to leave, and George will take your questions here. George.

Note: The President spoke at 1:01 p.m. to reporters assembled in the Briefing Room at the White House.