Gov. Doug Burgum has signed 33 of the more than 50 bills introduced this legislative session to change or eliminate over 400 antiquated, unnecessary and burdensome regulations and other red tape that was identified through the Red Tape Reduction Working Group created by executive order last August.
The working group was tasked with identifying regulations, rules and policies that could be changed or eliminated to reduce burdens and lower costs for North Dakota citizens and the private sector and make state government more efficient, effective and nimble. The working group included all cabinet agencies as well as non-cabinet agencies that chose to participate.
After receiving about 500 ideas from the public, agencies and team members, the working group acted on nearly 400 submissions that resulted in draft bills submitted through the agency bill submission process to be acted on during the legislative session and through administrative rule changes and process improvement. Through today, Burgum has signed 33 bills identified as reducing red tape, while eight bills have passed both chambers and await the governor’s signature and 11 bills are pending.
“By cutting red tape and streamlining regulations, we can lower the cost of government, improve efficiency and empower our citizens to reach their full potential,” Burgum said. “Our administration has embraced innovation over regulation, and these bills support that approach by doing away with unnecessary, duplicative and burdensome red tape. We appreciate all of the cabinet agencies, non-cabinet team members and members of the public who contributed to these efforts with their ideas and suggestions, and the Legislature for continuing to support and promote efficient government.”
Among the bills signed so far:
HB 1080: This bill will allow vehicle owners to store their motor vehicle registration electronically, in alignment with efforts by the North Dakota Department of Transportation (NDDOT) to provide a “digital wallet” for motorists. State law already allows for an electronic driver’s license, which is expected to go live next year, and for electronic proof of insurance. Currently, paper registration cards are still required to be carried in or on the vehicle, but HB 1080 will allow for an electronic version.
SB 2111: The NDDOT also proposed this bill allowing electronic vehicle titling, saving staff time and money on processing and printing costs while also reducing instances of lost vehicle titles and mitigating opportunities for fraud. Printed titles will still be available upon request.
HB 1085: This bill will save the state money on printing costs by eliminating the requirement that state agencies must print copies of their biennial reports. The bill requires agencies to post the report on their website by Dec. 1 of each year following the regular legislative session, and to provide an electronic copy to the state archivist.
HB 1089: This bill streamlines the disbursement of Clean Water State Revolving Fund dollars to communities by the Department of Environmental Quality by removing the requirement for Department of Water Resources approval.
HB 1060: This bill, requested by the North Dakota Highway Patrol, provides additional options for the trucking industry to purchase overweight and oversize permits for a 30-day period versus just a single-trip or annual permit. This also will be beneficial to the agriculture industry during planting and harvest season. The bill also allows for annual permits to be purchased for 365 days or to expire Dec. 31, giving trucking companies additional flexibility in managing their permits.
HB 1049: This bill clarifies current law to allow an agency adult foster care home to be considered a permitted use in a single-family or equivalent least-density residential zone.
SB 2074: This bill removes roadblocks that prevent citizens from accessing groundwater monitoring data, thereby improving transparency while maintaining appropriate privacy protections.
In addition to the above bills, other red tape reduction bills that have been signed by the governor include: HB 1055, HB 1056, HB 1072, HB 1073, HB 1074, HB 1098, HB 1099, HB 1101, HB 1197, HB 1214, HB 1215, HB 1409, SB 2056, SB 2057, SB 2060, SB 2072, SB 2075, SB 2077, SB 2079, SB 2081, SB 2083, SB 2084, SB 2090, SB 2101, SB 2109 and SB 2119.
Given the success of the Red Tape Reduction Working Group, planning is under way to begin a Red Tape Reduction 2.0 effort which will focus on gathering input from the public and business community.