Bureaucracy Example “The Dog Rules” Congress • We bought a dog and Tiffany (Congress) makes some laws about care of the dog 1. Dog needs to be walked each day 2. Dog needs to be fed 3. Dog poop needs to be cleaned up President (Tom) • Job is to make sure laws passed by congress (Tiffany) are carried out so he delegates authority. Delegation of Authority to agencies (Bureaucracy) • Quinn – Walk the dog • Chase – Clean up the poop • Reid – Feed the dog Questions? • Quinn – How far do I have to walk the dog? – How often? • Chase – Where do I put the poop? – How often do I have to clean up the poop? • Reid – Where do I get the food? – Who pays for the food? Who puts constraints on the bureaucracy? • Tiffany Rules (Congress) • Tom’s Rules (Executive Orders) • Courts Rules (Supreme Court Rulings) • People (What the public demands) Quinn • Wants to hire someone to walk the dog Constraints on Quinn • Must give everybody a chance to apply for the job (can’t just hire your friend) (People demand) • Can only pay what Tiffany will allow (Appropriated funds) • Must have a public meeting so everybody knows the hiring practices are fair (Courts rule) • Can only hire people who are not prejudice toward cats (Tiff likes cats) (Congress) • Must walk at least ½ mile but not more than ¾ mile (Executive order) • Must provide for feet when below zero Reid’s constraints • He is allotted $50 per month for food • He has to check all stores for the best buy before he can purchase any dog food. • He must purchase dog food that meets a minimum standard of nutrition Chase’s Constraints • Must bag all poop • Can hire someone to clean up poop but same hiring practices are required. • Must clean up poop left in the street if poop occurs on the walk. (Public demands) • Must provide for dog to poop where it won’t harm the grass (Environmental impact) • Can only pay $50 per month for poop removal • Must clean up poop every Wednesday and Sunday • Bureaucracy – A large, complex organization composed of appointed officials. – FBI, IRS, Department of Education , State Department, Department of Health and Human Services, – The list goes on, and on, and on, and on. – Federal agencies • As new departments are created so are new bureaucracies. – After the Civil War the Pension Office was started. People needed to be hired. – Department of Agriculture was created in 1862 • American Bureaucracy – Political authority over the Bureaucracy is shared among several institutions. – Both President and Congress has Constitutional powers over the Bureaucracy – Most federal agencies share functions with related agencies at the state and local level. – Today’s bureaucracy is largely the product of two events, the Great Depression (New Deal) and World War II – About 2 Million people – Another 13 million indirectly working (hired contractors, state agencies, etc. Power of Bureaucracy • Discretionary Authority – The ability the choose courses of action and make policies that are not spelled out by law. – The more discretionary authority, the more powerful the bureaucracy. • Congress has delegated authority to regulatory agencies in three areas. – Paying subsidies (farmers, veterans, etc) – Transferring Money from federal govt. to state govt. (Grant in aide program) – Devising and enforcing regulations (Safety features for cars (Highway Safety Admin.) drugs that will be allowed to be sold (Food and Drug Administration), etc. Constraints • Can’t hire, fire, build or sell without going through procedures set down in law. • How much money it pays its members is established by law, not the market. • Administrative Procedure Act – Before adopting a new rule or policy, an agency must give notice, solicit comments and often times hold hearings. • Freedom of Information Act – Citizens have the right to inspect all government records. • National Environmental Policy Act – Before undertaking any major action affecting the environment the agency must issue an environmental impact statement • Privacy Act – Government files about individuals, such as tax records, must be kept secret. • Open Meeting Law – Every part of every agency meeting must be open to the public unless certain matters (military, trade secrets) are being discussed. • Another constraint is that Congress often times gives the job to multiple agencies. – Stopping drugs trafficking is the task of the Custom’s service, the FBI, the Drug Enforcement Admin., the Boarder Patrol, and the Defense Department. Effect of these constraints • Government acts slowly • Sometimes the government acts inconsistently • It is easier to block action that to take action • Lower ranking employees will be reluctant to make decisions on their own. • Citizens will complain of “red tape” – Bureaucratic delay or confusion Why so many constraints? • Every bit of red tape is put in place by Congress, the White House, the courts, or the agency itself. • Environmental groups want to protect the environment so laws are passed. – The agencies then must follow those laws (impact statement) – People want a “fair chance” to get a government contract so laws are passed that only allow contracts to be issued after procedures are followed. Iron Triangle • Relationship between an agency, committee and an interest group – Example: Department of Agriculture works closely with farm organizations and Congressional agriculture committees • Not as prominent as in the past. Congressional oversight • No agency can exist without congressional approval. • No money can be spent unless it has been authorized by congress. • Even money that has been authorized must be appropriated (money set aside for a specific use) • Billie working for National Parks Service • Sometimes individual members of Congress may call an agency head on behalf of a constituent. • Congressional Investigation Five major problems with a Bureaucracy • Red Tape – Complex rules and procedures that must be followed in order to get something done. • Conflict – Some agencies seem to be working at cross purposed with other agencies • Duplication – Occurs when different federal agencies seem to be doing the same thing – Customs Services and Drug Enforcement • Imperialism – The tendency of agencies to grow without regard to the benefits that their programs confer or costs that they entail • Waste – Spending more than is necessary to buy some product or service.
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