According to Cornelius Kerwin, "Rulemaking is the single most important function performed by agencies of government
Rulemaking refines, and in some instances defines, the mission of every government agency. In so doing it provides direction and content from budgeting, program implementation, procurement, personnel management, dispute resolution, and other important government activities" (Preface XI). This is the foundation for the book, Rulemaking. The whole text primarily revolves around this statement. Throughout the book Kerwin's central theme is that rulemaking is the single most important function that any government agency has within its possession. Much like other admin law books he discusses how those agencies with their rulemaking powers interpret legislation and proceed forward with making policy.
This book also elaborates on the study of rulemaking by giving examples through cases, studies, loads of government documentation and interviews with policy makers. Following the information and chapters is really easy. The book is illustrated with clear tables, charts, and figures. Each chapter is clearly defined and tables/figures are clearly marked after the table of contents.
Going further into the layout of the book, the author chose a very "normal" approach to organization of the chapters. That process being, state, explain, and elaborate. It analyzes the management of rulemaking at three levels presidential, agency, and individual rule administration. Kerwin begins strong with the background of rulemaking, definitions of rulemaking, history, categories and reasoning. Logically he proceeds with "The Process of Rulemaking", followed by "Issues and Contradictions" in chapter three. He moves on to the management of rulemaking in chapter 4. "Participation in Rulemaking" for chapter 5. "Oversight of Rulemaking" for chapter 6, and ending with "Theory, an Agenda for Research, and an Appreciation" for chapter 7. The book starts out strong and extremely informational, slows down extremely in the middle chapters and ends in theory, which is somewhat thought provoking.
Moving on now with the pro's and con's of Kerwin's book Rulemaking. The pro's: Unlike many other public administration texts and especially those dealing with admin law, Kerwin used many current policies and procedures. By this text being more up to date it allows the readers to associate more current affairs. It brings to the table many examples within the Clean Air Act and Medicaid. The cases and explanations are thoroughly defined and easy to follow.
Kerwin also discusses strategies chosen by various Presidents, and Congressional members to control the rulemaking/policy making powers of various agencies. He discusses everything from writing extremely specific laws that limit the powers of the agencies so that they cannot stray from the path that Congress intends for them, to threatening to reduce agency budgets if they do not comply.
The con's: The author put a lot...