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GAO Welfare Ruling Adds Congress To Agency Rulemaking Mix

Law360, New York (September 6, 2012, 7:30 PM EDT) -- The executive branch's fondness for setting policy by issuing guidance and bulletins, rather than formal rulemaking, could face new challenges after the U.S. Government Accountability Office ruled this week that guidance qualifies as a rule that must be submitted to Congress for review.

On Tuesday, the GAO ruled that a U.S. Department of Health and Human Services memo advising states to apply for waivers under the welfare program constitutes a rule under the Congressional Review Act, which requires that rules be submitted to both houses and...
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