Presentation by Eric Miller, Blinn College, Bryan, Texas. Chapter 13 The Federal Bureaucracy: Administering the Government
Norman Thomas [No] industrial society could manage the daily operations of its public affairs without bureaucratic organizations in which officials play a major policymaking role.
Federal Administration: Form, Personnel, and Activities Bureaucratic Principles Hierarchical Authority Job Specialization Formalized Rules The Federal Bureaucracy in Americans’ Daily Lives roughly 2.5 million employees The President & Congress get more press but the bureaucracy has more impact on our daily lives: delivers daily mail maintains national forests administers social security regulates stock markets build dams and generates hydroelectricity develops the country’s defense systems
Federal Administration: Form, Personnel, and Activities Types of Administrative Organizations Cabinet Departments Dept. of justice FBI Dept. of Agriculture U.S. Forest service-“dual-use”- preserves forests for environmental reasons & opens them up for logging Independent Agencies NASA, CIA Narrow area of responsibility compared to cabinet dept. Divided into a number of smaller operating units Exist independently of cabinet depts. Head is appointed by POTUS Regulatory Agencies EPA, FCC Created when Congress perceives a need for ongoing control of an economic activity Legislative, executive, and judicial functions Government Corporations US Postal Service Presidential Commissions
Federal Administration: Form, Personnel, and Activities Federal Employment 2.5 Million civilian employees Dept. of Defense has the most Plus more than 1.4 million active uniformed service members Patronage system—designed to improve link between administration and the people Abuses—spoils system Merit criteria most fed employees are hired on merit GS pay scales GS-1 (lowest) to GS-18 (the highest) federal employees are underpaid compared to their private sector counterparts College graduates usually start out at G-5 $22,000 Unions Federal employees can form labor unions but they have limited authority Taft-Hartley Act of 1947 prohibits strikes by federal employees permits the firing of workers who do go on strike
Federal Administration: Form, Personnel, and Activities The Federal Bureaucracy’s Policy Responsibilities Policy Implementation (administration) executing the policy decisions of the pres., Cong. & the courts regulation of industries,such as meat and poultry delivery of services as provided by laws Development of Public Policy Rulemaking- deciding how laws will work in practice
Development of the Federal Bureaucracy: Politics and Administration Small Government and the Patronage System developed during the Jackson administration designed to make the admin. of gov. more responsive to citizens It would tie the administration more closely to the people it served Growth in Government and the Merit System Civil Service System Neutral Competence Bureaucracy should be staffed by people chosen on the basis of ability and to do its work fairly on behalf of all citizens Neutral administration Civil servants are not partisan appointees, thus ensuring evenhanded work
Development of the Federal Bureaucracy: Politics and Administration Big Government and the Executive Leadership System During the New Deal era, the fed bureaucracy grew substantially in size
The Bureaucracy’s Power Imperative The Agency Point of View Career bureaucrats tend to follow their agency's point of view bureaucrats are specialists and elected officials are generalists Promoting agency’s goals Bureaucrats relay on specialized knowledge, backing of POTUS and Congress, and the support of clientele groups Sources of Bureaucratic Power Legally, the bureaucracy derives its authority from acts of Congress The Power of Expertise Career bureaucrats in the Dept. of Commerce and the Federal Trade Commission are most likely to understand trade issues in the U.S. The Power of Clientele Groups SPECIAL INTERESTS THAT BENEFIT DIRECTLY FROM A bureaucratic AGENCY The Power of Friends in High Places Agency goals may conflict with president or Congress, but they still need agency expertise and competency
Bureaucratic Accountability Accountability Through the Presidency Reorganization encounters opposition from the bureaucracy itself clientele groups members of Congress the public Presidential Appointments The Executive Budget Office of Management and Budget the most important part of the Executive Office of the President (EOP) assigns each agency a budget limit in accordance with the president’s directives
The Budgetary Process Year and a half long; begins with OMB assigning each agency a budget limit based on presidential directives Agencies develop detailed budget; president finalizes with OMB POTUS sends to Congress House & Senate budget committees prepare budget resolution; full House and Senate vote House and Senate appropriations committees prepare appropriations bills; full House and Senate vote President signs or vetoes Fiscal year begins Oct. 1 Continuing resolutions???
Bureaucratic Accountability Accountability Through Congress Oversight Sunset laws Budget GAO- Government Accountability Office Has moved from a limited role of keeping track of agency spending to also monitoring whether the agency is implementing policies in the way Congress intended CBO- Congressional Budget Office Accountability Through the Courts Lawsuits African American farmers sued the Dept. of Agriculture for discrimination in granting federal farm loans Courts tend to support administrators if their actions are in line with the law they are adm inistering Agencies can apply reasonable interpretation of statutes Administrators must have flexibility if they are to operate effectively
Bureaucratic Accountability Accountability Within the Bureaucracy Itself Senior Executive Service (SES) Administrative law judges Handles disputes that involve cases in which an individual believes that he or she was improperly disadvantaged by a bureaucrat’s decision Whistle-Blowing While employed- it takes “guts” Post-employment Richard Clarke accused George W. Bush of downplaying the terrorist threat Demographic Representativeness If all employees are taken into account, the federal bureaucracy is close to being representative of the nation’s population The bureaucracy is not demographically representative at its highest levels about 60% of managerial and professional positions are held by white males
Federal Job Rankings (GS) of Various Demographic Groups
Reinventing Government Bureaucracy today was created in response to problems in the past. Now suggested to focus on outputs. Others question the focus on “customers” of the agencies. Limits on what can be cut from the agencies. “reinventing teams”- formed under the National Performance Review to analyze and make recommendations about bureaucratic effectiveness Responsiveness, accountability, and efficiency