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June 20, 2006

Red Tape Reduction yielding success

Increasing efficiency and maximizing effectiveness are critical goals for any successful business, organization, or government, said Premier Danny Williams today as he announced the completion of the first phase of the provincial government�s Red Tape Reduction Initiative.

"I am pleased today to report that we have already reduced the number of regulatory requirements by 8,391, which represents a tremendous amount of work by the departments, agencies, boards and commissions included in this initiative," said Premier Williams. "I extend sincere appreciation to the Red Tape Task Force for their contributions to this important initiative in creating increased efficiency for our citizens and an improved environment for business in the province. I look forward to receiving the official report from the task force later this summer."

All entities included in the initiative have completed a count of regulatory requirements which will serve as the baseline for the 25 per cent reduction. The inventory count totaled 312,517 regulations, putting the reduction target at 78,129. With the progress announced today, this target has already been reduced to 69,738.

"We still have a great deal of work ahead of us, but progress is being made," added the Premier. "We committed in our Blueprint to develop and implement policies that would create an efficient and flexible environment for small business in the province, and we started this process with a Red Tape Reduction Task Force. Once the process began, we quickly recognized that burdensome red tape was also negatively impacting Newfoundlanders and Labradorians in their everyday lives and we, therefore, expanded the mandate of the task force with a view to eliminating red tape throughout government. I am pleased with the progress this task force has made to-date and to announce the successful completion of phase one. With the completion of this first phase, we are moving forward in achieving the objective of reducing red tape by 25 per cent in three years."

Public consultations with key stakeholders were broad based and successfully completed over several months, enabling the task force to develop a go-forward approach for further red tape reduction. Task force chair and MHA for Terra Nova Paul Oram said he is pleased with the progress to-date and looks forward to submitting the official report to government later this summer. "Now that our public consultation process is complete, our task force is in a position to compile our findings and make recommendations," said MHA Oram. "I thank all who provided comments and suggestions for our consideration. The information we received will be invaluable in helping guide our recommendations."

In addition to reducing red tape, Premier Williams has requested that a review of government fees be completed to ensure that fees serve a public purpose and are set at appropriate levels. Details on this review will be announced in the coming days by the Department of Finance.

Media contact:

Elizabeth Matthews, Office of the Premier, (709) 729-3960, 351.1227,
Paul Oram, MHA District of Terra Nova, (709) 729-0990

2006 06 20                            2:30 p.m.

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