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Regulatory Reform and the Chevron Doctrine

November 1996

Citation: 26 ELR 10597

Issue: 11

Author: Adam Babich

Over the last year or so, Congress has considered several proposals to reform the regulatory system.1 This short Comment suggests an alternative approach to reform, based on the theory that the regulatory system should work in the following manner: (1) Congress should set clear goals; (2) agencies should implement those goals; and (3) courts should provide quality control, ensuring that regulations embody well-thought out policy decisions that are driven by Congress' goals.2 The system does not work this way now, and probably will not until Congress changes the statutory provisions that govern judicial review of agency decisions. The change suggested by this Comment is a relatively minor statutory adjustment to the U.S. Supreme Court's holding in Chevron U.S.A., Inc. v. Natural Resources Defense Council3 —the 1984 case that created the Chevron doctrine.

Adam Babich is editor-in-chief of ELR—The Environmental Law Reporter. The views expressed in the Comment are not necessarily shared by the Environmental Law Institute.

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