Presidential Influence and Environmental Policy

By Robert A. Shanley; Bernard K. Johnpoll | Go to book overview

5
The Reagan Administrative Presidency Strategy and the Politics of Enforcement in Environmental Policy

Law enforcement can be achieved by a mixture of compliance and deterrence strategies by regulatory agencies. The major goal in a compliance enforcement system is to obtain conformity with legal mandates to encourage compliance without the necessity to detect and persecute violators. A deterrence enforcement approach, on the other hand, aims to obtain law-abiding behavior by detecting infractions of the law, determining who has violated the law, and penalizing violators in order to deter future infractions. Each strategy has its advantages and limitations, which the regulatory agency may consider if it has some flexibility of choice. The agency enforcement process may also be influenced by other factors in the political arena, including the perspectives of oversight and appropriations committees in Congress, interest groups, particularly regulated groups, the White House and its key advisory agencies, as well as by the mandate and resources of the agency, and the potency of its allies. 1

The politics of enforcement is complex and difficult to trace and measure, particularly since enforcement patterns and strategies may vary by agency and by program. Since enforcement standards are rarely stipulated by statute and by regulation, actual enforcement falls within the discretion of the executive branch and appropriate agencies. When they are written, enforcement strategies may be spelled out in internal agency memoranda and directives. Universal and full enforcement of all laws and regulations is administratively impossible, and effective enforcement is difficult to define; therefore, agencies use some discretion in selecting or omitting or narrowing the range of penalties and remedial steps to apply against violators. More flexible enforcement approaches, which permit a considerable degree of administrative discretion, may estimate enforcement performance by overall

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Presidential Influence and Environmental Policy
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Recent Titles in Contributions in Political Science ii
  • Title Page iii
  • Contents vii
  • Abbreviations ix
  • Acknowledgments xi
  • Introduction 1
  • 1 7
  • Notes 24
  • 2 - The Administrative Presidency: Information Collection, Statistical Policy, and Environmental Policy 27
  • Notes 46
  • 3 - Presidential Executive Orders and Environmental Policy 49
  • Notes 84
  • 4 - The Administrative Presidency and the Politics of Risk Management 91
  • Notes 106
  • 5 - The Reagan Administrative Presidency Strategy and the Politics of Enforcement in Environmental Policy 109
  • Notes 127
  • 6 - The Bush Presidency and Environmental Policy 131
  • Notes 151
  • 7 - Conclusion 155
  • Notes 163
  • Selected Bibliography 165
  • Index 173
  • About the Author 183
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