Presentation on theme: "American Government and Organization PS1301 Wednesday, 21 April."— Presentation transcript:
American Government and Organization PS1301 Wednesday, 21 April
Announcements Take Quiz in Chapter 13 Read, “Government Regulation After September 11” in American Politics After September 11
The Bureaucracy A large complex organization characterized by specialization, expertise (division of labor) and hierarchy of authority The Bureaucracy is in charge of implementation; Implementation is the process by which a law is put into operation Laws that congress creates in order to implement policies are given the authority make numerous policy decisions that have the force of law
The ‘Problem’ of Bureaucratic Discretion Scientific expertise Experience Diffuses conflict Intentional
Example of how bureaucratic discretion works Problem of Occupational Safety
Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 Designed to ensure the safety and health of workers. Congress could not agree on how to balance the competing interest of employees who wanted safe workplaces and employers who did not want to expend large amounts of money to comply with standards set by OSHA. SO the legislation as it was passed said nothing about how the agency (OSHA within the Department of Labor) implementing this legislation was to balance the competing interests OSHA They left it up to OSHA So the bureaucracy takes the laws and policies as made by congress, the president and the courts and develop rules and procedures for making sure they are carried out. Most implementation involves what is called administrative or bureaucratic discretion: "The ability to make choices concerning the best way to implement congressional intentions.” Bureaucratic discretion is exercised through two formal administrative procedures: rule making and adjudication.
Rule Making Rule making results in regulations. Regulations are rules that govern the operations of all government programs. So OSHA issues regulations about worker safety and health, such as platforms must have railings. How are regulations written: Administrative Procedures Act (1946) established rule making procedures in order to give everyone a chance to participate in the process. The act requires that public notice of the time of the proceedings be provided in the Federal Register (a daily publication that contains all proposed and final regulations of all federal agencies). “Search OSHA and worker safety” Federal Register Federal Register Interested parties be given the opportunity to submit written arguments and facts relevant to the rule The purpose and basis of the rule should be stated Sometimes formal hearings are required by law where evidence is gathered and witnesses testify. The administrators then examine the records and justify the rules that they write.
Rule Adjudication Bureaucratic agency settles disputes between two parties as a court does. Sometimes a person or business is accused of not complying with one of the rules or regulations issued by an administrative agency. OSHA settles disputes between employers and employees. It also fines employers for infractions of the rules. These cases can be appealed to a federal court.
Pros of Bureaucratic Discretion Pluralism: diffuses conflict, more people involved in policy making, more points of access Efficiency, expertise: practical response to problems of divided government, inability of separated powers to deal effectively with policy challenges Flexibility: Laws cannot be written by Congress which anticipate and address all possible situations that an agency may encounter when implementing a policy Inevitable: necessary given size and scope of government
Cons of Bureaucratic Discretion Threatens the idea of political accountability: that important decisions be made by elected officials. Questions separation of powers Agency capture: interest that fall under an agencies jurisdiction will control their rulemaking and implementation.
Making the Bureaucracy Accountable Institutional mechanisms President (through reorganization and executive order) Congress (through legislative oversight, budget, authorize) Judicial: individuals can bring suit against an agency for failure to enforce a law.