Congress (Recommendations)

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The Federal Government owns or operates over 20,000 facilities, ranging from huge military establishments, national parks, and systems of prisons and veterans’ hospitals to individual fish hatcheries, Coast Guard stations and research laboratories. All of these facilities are required by federal law to comply with environmental quality standards established by national,...

This recommendation is addressed to the organizational structures which agencies establish to review decisions of presiding officers (ordinarily, administrative law judges) in proceedings governed by sections 556 and 557 of the Administrative Procedure Act or otherwise involving agency determinations on the record after opportunity for a hearing. It...

In late 1987, Congress enacted an administrative civil money penalty program for violations of the Federal Aviation Act and its implementing safety regulations. The Civil Penalty Assessment Demonstration Program, a 2-year temporary program, was originally due to expire December 31, 1989. It was extended for 4 months in anticipation of the completion...

This recommendation states criteria for use by the Congress in determining the appropriate forum for judicial review of federal administrative action.

The present forum for the review of most agency actions taken on formal evidentiary records is the court of appeals under specific statutory provisions. There are some exceptions. An important one...

The Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) and discovery provide separate mechanisms for obtaining the disclosure of Government documents. Any person may invoke at any time the release provisions of the FOIA by requesting an agency to disclose any reasonably described agency records. A requester’s need for the records and his purpose in making the...

The ombudsman1 is an institution frequently used in other countries, and increasingly used in this country, as a means of inquiring into citizen grievances about administrative acts or failures to act and, in suitable cases, to criticize or to make recommendations...

Although largely unknown to lawyers outside the West, the Department of the Interior’s disposition of mining claims on public lands is a significant field of Federal administrative activity and an important element in planning rational use of the public lands.

The procedures for establishing or “locating” mining claims are set out by the General...

Major industrial development projects often have significant environmental effects and require permit approvals and preparation of environmental reviews by agencies under legislation such as the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) and the Clean Air Act. Although governmental permitting and review processes...

The routine sharing of information between congressional committees and administrative agencies constitutes one of the most important interactions between the political branches of our national government. The process of exchanging information affects the ability of the executive and legislative branches to carry out their constitutionally assigned...

The basic principle of the rulemaking provisions of the Administrative Procedure Act—that an opportunity for public participation fosters the fair and informed exercise of rulemaking authority—is undercut by various categorical exemptions in 5 U.S.C. § 553(a). More than 25 years’ experience with rulemaking under the APA has shown some of these broad exemptions to be neither...

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