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Unit IV: Institutions Ch. 15: The Bureaucracy. Review: Structure of the American Bureaucracy Executive Branch Agencies: 1. White House Office: 2. Executive.

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Presentation on theme: "Unit IV: Institutions Ch. 15: The Bureaucracy. Review: Structure of the American Bureaucracy Executive Branch Agencies: 1. White House Office: 2. Executive."— Presentation transcript:

1 Unit IV: Institutions Ch. 15: The Bureaucracy

2 Review: Structure of the American Bureaucracy Executive Branch Agencies: 1. White House Office: 2. Executive Office of the President:  main agencies: 3. The Cabinet: 4. Independent executive agencies: 5. Government corporations

3 6. Independent Regulatory Commissions 1. Created by Congress to regulate important aspects of the nation’s economy. 2. Generally, the decisions of these are beyond presidential control,  Commissioners serve long terms  Only a bare majority can belong to the same party  Terms are staggered  Commissioners can be fired by the President only for causes that Congress has specified. 3. Have quasi-legislative power: 4. Have quasi-judicial power: 5. Some important regulatory commissions:

4 I. Distinctiveness of U.S. Bureaucracy A. Political authority over the bureaucracy is shared by ?? B. Federal agencies further share responsibility with?? C. Adversarial culture

5 II. The Growth of the Bureaucracy A. Early controversies: B. Development of the civil service system  spoils system  Pendleton Act (1883)  Today, over ?? of federal employees are civil service workers  Under ?? of top-level federal jobs are still filled by presidential appointment (political appointees).

6 III. The Federal Bureaucracy Today A. Size: 1. There are about 3mn. Civilian federal employees 2. Number has been fairly constant since  Why? 2 theories: B. Power of the bureaucracy: 1. Discretionary authority: agencies have the power to choose various courses of action when Congress writes broadly-worded laws that allow for bureaucratic interpretation. 2. Primary areas of delegation: 3. Other areas: C. Reasons for growth of power:

7 Trend of Federal Civilian Employment

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10 IV. Influences of Bureaucratic Behavior A. Recruitment and retention 1. Most bureaucrats are appointed by civil service exam 2. As system decentralizes agencies hire as needed 3. Legal exceptions: B. The buddy system: C. Firing a bureaucrat: D. Agency’s Point of View 1. Many bureaucrats have a “loyal” or “agency” point of view 2. System assures continuity and expertise in policies and procedures among many bureaucrats 3. Agency managers must cultivate support of subordinates

11 Influences… E. Demographic Attributes F. Constraints 1. Low and mid-level bureaucrats are fairly representative 2. Upper-level bureaucrats are not: 3. Surveys show bureaucrats tend to be more liberal than general public, 4. Only 10% live in D.C. 5. ~30% work in a defense agency 6. Less than 15% work in a welfare agency 7. Most are white collar workers  Legal: 1. Administrative Procedure Act (1946) 2. Freedom of Information Act (1966) 3. Hatch Act (1939) 4. National Environmental Policy Act (1969): 5. Privacy Act (1974) 6. Open Meeting Law (1976) 7. Affirmative action hiring guidelines  Organizational: 1. Size 2. Red tape 3. Lack of monetary incentives

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14 V. Controlling the Bureaucracy: Presidential Influences A. Powers B. Checks 1. To appoint top-level bureaucrats 2. to fire top-level bureaucrats 3. Reorganization 4. agency budgets 5. Appointment of SES personnel 6. “central clearance” 7. OMB oversight 1. Senate confirmation for top- level appointees 2. President cannot fire vast majority of bureaucrats 3. Reorganization must go through Congress 4. Agency budgets must go through Congress 5. SES has had little impact on accountability

15 Congressional Influences A. Powers B. Limits 1. Appropriations of agency budgets 2. Standing committee oversight, investigations, hearings 3. GAO 4. Reorganization 5. Appointment confirmation 6. Sunset laws Congress may not want to check power of the bureaucracy:  Members profit politically from the existence of federal programs within their states/districts  Easier for Congress to pass broadly-worded legislation and have experts in bureaucracy fill in the holes

16 Other Influences A. Interest Groups B. Media 1. Lobbying 2. Revolving door 3. Client groups 4. Iron triangles/issue networks/policy networks (subgovernments): 1. Scrutiny 2. “whistle blowers” 3. “leaks”

17 VI. Bureaucratic Pathologies A. Public Opinion B. Criticisms 1. General attitude is negative, but specific attitude is more favorable 2. lazy and ineffective, yet also too powerful 3. Viewed as scapegoats by politicians 1. Red tape 2. Agency conflicts 3. Duplication 4. Waste 5. Excessive growth 6. Increase in rules and regulations over last 50 years 7. Lack of incentives to increase efficiency and productivity 8. “permanent government”

18 Published by the Office of the Federal Register, National Archives and Records Administration (NARA), the Federal Register is the official daily publication for rules, proposed rules, and notices of Federal agencies and organizations, as well as executive orders and other presidential documents. Published daily.

19 VII. Reforming the Bureaucracy A. In defense of bureaucracy B. NPR (Nat’l Performance Review 1993) 1. Correcting red tape would mean more red tape 2. Reducing agency conflicts and duplication would require Congress to set priorities 3. To reduce waste would require more regulations 4. To reduce excessive growth, Congress would have to set priorities 5. Some agencies have shrunk, some have been eliminated 6. Public is inconsistent 7. Comparatively, US system is efficient 1. Designed to reinvent government 2. Emphasizes customer satisfaction 3. Innovation and quality:  Less-centralized management  More employee initiatives  Customer satisfaction


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