Summary: S.2445 — 105th Congress (1997-1998)All Information (Except Text)

There is one summary for S.2445. Bill summaries are authored by CRS.

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Introduced in Senate (09/08/1998)

Federalism Enforcement Act of 1998 - Directs executive agencies, when formulating and implementing policies that have federalism implications, to: (1) strictly adhere to constitutional principles and closely examine the constitutional and statutory authority supporting any Federal action that would limit the policy making direction of the States; (2) take Federal action limiting the policy making discretion of the States only where constitutional authority for the action is clear and certain and the national activity is necessitated by the presence of a problem of national scope; (3) recognize the distinction between problems of national scope and problems that are merely common to the States; (4) recognize that constitutional authority for Federal action is clear and certain only when authority for the action may be found in a specific provision of the Constitution, when there is no provision in the Constitution prohibiting Federal action, and when the action does not encroach upon authority reserved to the States; (5) encourage States to develop their own policies to achieve program objectives and to work with officials in other States; (6) refrain from establishing uniform, national standards for programs and, when possible, defer to the States to establish standards; and (7) consult with officials and organizations representing the States in developing national standards when required.

States that: (1) the national Government should grant the States the maximum administrative discretion possible with respect to national policies administered by the States; and (2) intrusive Federal oversight of State administration is neither necessary nor desirable.

Requires observation of the following special requirements for preemption of State law: (1) agencies should construe a Federal statute to preempt only when it contains an express preemption provision, when there is some other firm and palpable evidence compelling the conclusion that the Congress intended preemption, or when the exercise of State authority directly conflicts with the exercise of Federal authority under the statute; (2) such agencies should construe any authorization in the statute for the issuance of regulations as authorizing preemption only when the statute expressly authorizes issuance of preemptive regulations or when there is other evidence compelling the conclusion that the Congress intended to delegate preemption authority; (3) any regulatory preemption should be restricted to the minimum level necessary to achieve the objectives of the statute; (4) an agency that foresees the possibility of a conflict between State law and federally protected interests should consult with State officials and organizations to avoid such a conflict; and (5) an agency that proposes to act through adjudication or rulemaking should provide all affected States notice and an opportunity for participation in the proceedings.

Expresses the sense of the Congress that executive departments and agencies should not submit to the Congress legislation that would: (1) regulate the States so as to interfere with functions essential to the their separate and independent existence or their freedom to structure integral operations; (2) attach to Federal grants conditions unrelated to such grant; or (3) preempt State law unless consistent with the principles of federalism and unless a clearly legitimate national purpose cannot otherwise be met.

Requires the head of each executive department and agency to designate an official responsible for implementing this Act, who shall determine which proposed policies have sufficient federalism implications to warrant the preparation of a federalism assessment. Provides assessment requirements.

Directs the Office of Management and Budget to ensure that the policies of executive departments and agencies are consistent with the principles, criteria, and requirements set forth under this Act. Requires such departments and agencies to identify proposed regulatory and statutory provisions that have significant federalism implications and to address any substantial federalism concerns.