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Saturday, April 28, 2018
HE GOT THE SOUNDPROOF BOOTH FOR HIS WAYBACK MACHINE
The White House has altered an official timeline to show that a required review of a proposed EPA science rule was finished one day before agency Administrator Scott Pruitt signed it this past Tuesday.
The Reginfo.gov site had previously shown that the proposal cleared Office of Management and Budget on Wednesday, indicating Pruitt went forward with the signing before the interagency review was complete.
OMB backdated that to Monday after E&E News reported the discrepancy yesterday (Greenwire, April 26).
Coalter Baker, a spokesman for the budget office, would not provide an on-the-record explanation as to the reason for the untimely change in transparency rules
EPA, spokeswoman Liz Bowman had earlier said in a statement that the review was finished before the signing, adding that "any questions about the management" of the Reginfo.gov site should be addressed to OMB.
"This is all highly irregular. Either it speaks to a significant lack of competence at EPA or OMB, or there is some sort of funny business or cover-up going on." Said Paul Billings, senior vice president for advocacy at the American Lung Association, which has been critical of the proposal.
The proposed rule, which has already sparked considerable controversy, would effectively bar EPA from using scientific research in crafting new regulations unless the underlying data are made public.