Chapter 17 - The Policy Process Public Policy- What...

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The Policy Process Public Policy- What government does, usually in the form of new laws and regulations or in the interpretation and implementation of existing laws and regulations. Example: People concerned about health care, so the government created the Medicare program in 1965, in 1997 the government established the State Children's Health Insurance Program to provide health care for poor children. 3 Kinds of Policies- Distributive Policy- targeted at narrowly defined groups or individuals: a tax break for a particular firm or industry/a bridge for a group of constituents. Redistributive Policy- transfer resources from one group to another: food stamps collect taxes and provide the poor with better food. Regulatory Policy- require a group to change its behavior to some public purpose: rules to make drugs safer or increase car gas mileage. Public Goods- Policies that provide benefits for everyone: national defense. Stages of the Policymaking Process 1.Agenda Setting- the process by which a problem or concern of a set of individuals becomes part of the agenda. Happens either through groups, politicians, news media, etc. Either becomes part of the public agenda or doesn't. 2. Decision Making- The government decides whether it is appropriate to make a law based on the concern. Happens either through introduction of a bill in the House or Senate, executive order of president, or through the courts up to the Supreme Court. 3. Implementation- putting a law, regulation, program, or court ruling into effect. This is the least visible policy process. There is a gap between what policymakers intend and what is actually carried out. Interest groups and certain public groups pay attention to policies that affect them. 4. Evaluation and Feedback- Assessing the overall efficiency and effectiveness of a policy. Efficiency- How well resources are used to meet policy objectives. Effectiveness- The degree to which the goals of a policy are met. If some group feels that a policy has adversely affected them, they start the stages of the policymaking process all over again to create a policy that rights the previous policy's wrongs. Theories of Public Policy: -Marxists believe that policies are the outcome of the wishes of a dominant capitalist class. -Elite Theorists believe that policies are made by the leaders of powerful institutions, such as corporations, foundations, and government. -Some theorists believe that the bureaucracy, with its own special interests, creates policies. -Pluralists believe that the interaction of interest and advocacy groups creates policies. An Overview of Economic Policies Inflation- A condition of rising prices and the reduced purchasing power of the dollar. Recession- Defined by economists as two quarters (6 months) of declining GDP.
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This note was uploaded on 02/19/2010 for the course GOV 310L taught by Professor Kieth during the Spring '07 term at University of Texas.

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Chapter 17 - The Policy Process Public Policy- What...

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