ObamaCare's Missed Deadlines


Along with all the other problems it's having, ObamaCare is behind schedule on nearly half of its legally mandated deadlines, according to a report by the conservative American Action Forum:

Of the ACA regulations with legal deadlines,  47 percent, 20 of 42, have broken the mandated implementation schedule.

"The Secretary shall…" language in legislation often allows legislators to cede broad policymaking authority to administrative agencies.  In significant regulatory overhauls, such as Dodd-Frank or the ACA, the phrase literally appears hundreds of times.  However, with both pieces of legislation, agencies are often required to issue regulations by a specific date. 

Two notable regulations that missed their deadlines are also two of the more controversial.  The new requirements for the calorie labeling of food in vending machines and menu items will cost restaurants and other small businesses more than $822 million to implement, and generate more than 1.4 million annual paperwork burden hours.  However, businesses are still waiting for a final rule, and the proposed version arrived late as well.

Perhaps the most expensive "tardy" regulation involved forcing health plans and third party administrators to publish a "uniform" summary of benefits for health plans.  The Administration was supposed to issue a final rule by March 23, 2011, but a rule was not published until almost a year later.  The total cost for the regulation when it did arrive: $146 million and more than 3 million paperwork burden hours.

Whether or not this was avoidable, it's entirely predictable. Two years ago, I noted in a feature on implementation of the law that the administration was already behind schedule on a handful of early deadlines, and predicted that it was a good bet that many more would fall behind as well. On multiple levels, ObamaCare's bureaucratic ambition seems to have exceeded the Obama administration's bureaucratic capabilities. 

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  1. Pathetic.

    1. Seriously. This comprised what, 16% of the nation’s economy and it’s totally fucked up?

      1. But now there’s a system. Don’t you want a system? A system will solve all of our problems? Otherwise, there will be chaos! ROADS!

        1. Without government, who will mint new children?!

      2. It’s been fucked up for decades, which is why congress could sneak through this overworked tumor of a reform to begin with – none of the anti-government crowd had a better idea, and so they let the problem fester until someone else took the ball from them and tried something.

        Some of the fault lies with the anti-PPACA nay-sayers, who constantly said “This gets done our way or not at all”.

  2. so they were fined and it came out of their paychecks? I know I’m fined if I miss a regulatory compliance deadline.

  3. In other words, they let their pelican beaks overload their hummingbird stomachs…

  4. GOP obstructionism!

  5. OT, but too good to pass up. Clinton apologizes for being honest:
    “I thought something had to be done on the ‘fiscal cliff’ before the election. Apparently nothing has to be done until the first of the year.”

    1. You got to look it up yourself, since the reason squirrels found 50 characters in the link.

  6. will cost restaurants and other small businesses more than $822 million to implement, and generate more than 1.4 million annual paperwork burden hours.

    But think of the jobs that will be created!

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