The Negotiated Rulemaking Act (NRA) of 1996 created the Negotiated Rulemaking Committee. The NRA was “to encourage agencies to use negotiated rulemaking when it enhances the informal rulemaking process.” The purpose of the Negotiated Rulemaking Committee is to conduct discussions in a good faith attempt to reach consensus on proposed regulatory language. Negotiated rulemaking is a process in which a proposed rule is developed by a committee composed of representatives of all those interests that will be significantly affected by the rule. Decisions are made by consensus, which the NRA defines as the unanimous concurrence among interests represented on a Negotiated Rulemaking Committee, unless the Negotiated Rulemaking Committee itself unanimously agrees to use a different definition. To start the process, the Agency identifies all interests potentially affected by the rulemaking under consideration. The Agency then establishes a committee representing these various interests to negotiate a consensus on the terms of a proposed rule.
If a regulatory negotiation advisory committee reaches consensus on the provisions of a proposed rule, the Agency would use such consensus as the basis of a proposed rule