74th Plenary on June 17

The 74th Plenary Session will take place virtually tomorrow, Thursday, June 17. The ACUS Assembly will consider five proposed recommendations at this season’s Plenary:

Clarifying Access to Judicial Review of Agency Action. This proposed recommendation urges Congress to enact a cross-cutting statute that addresses certain recurring technical problems in statutory provisions governing judicial review of agency action that may cause unfairness, inefficiency, or unnecessary litigation. It also offers a set of drafting principles for Congress when it writes new or amended judicial review statutes. It draws in large part on ACUS’s forthcoming Sourcebook of Federal Judicial Review Statutes, which analyzes the provisions in the U.S. Code governing judicial review of rules and adjudicative orders and identifies recurring drafting problems in them. Learn more about the project here and the proposed Recommendation from the Committee on Judicial Review here.

Mass, Computer-Generated, and Fraudulent Comments. This proposed recommendation offers best practices for managing mass and computer-generated comments, as well as a type of fraudulent comments referred to as ‘‘malattributed comments,’’ in agency rulemakings. Among other things, it offers best practices for agencies to consider with respect to using technology to process such comments, managing their public rulemaking dockets in response to such comments, and ensuring transparency with respect to any such actions they undertake. Learn more about the project here and the proposed Recommendation from the Committee on Rulemaking here.

Periodic Retrospective Review. This proposed recommendation identifies best practices for agencies as they conduct retrospective review of their regulations on a periodic basis. It provides guidance for agencies on identifying the types of regulations that are strong candidates for review, determining the optimal frequency of review, soliciting public feedback to enhance their review efforts, identifying staff to participate in review, and coordinating review efforts with other agencies. Learn more about the project here and the proposed Recommendation from the Committee on Administration and Management here.

Early Input on Regulatory Alternatives. This proposed recommendation addresses when and how agencies should solicit input on alternatives to rules under consideration before issuing notices of proposed rulemaking. Among other things, it provides targeted measures for agencies to obtain input from knowledgeable persons in ways that are cost-effective and equitable and that maximize the likelihood of obtaining diverse, useful responses. Learn more about the project here and the proposed Recommendation from the Committee on Regulation here.

Virtual Hearings in Agency Adjudication. This proposed recommendation addresses the use of virtual hearings, in which one or more participants attend remotely using a personal computer or mobile device, in agency adjudications. Virtual hearings have become increasingly common in agency adjudications, especially during the COVID–19 pandemic, but they can pose unique logistical challenges and raise questions of accessibility, transparency, privacy, and data security. The proposed recommendation identifies best practices for improving existing virtual-hearing programs and establishing new ones when appropriate. Learn more about the project here and the proposed Recommendation from the Committee on Adjudication here.

Visit the Plenary Session webpage to RSVP for the Plenary and to read the proposed recommendations, consultant reports, and comments we receive.