TABLE 5.2 Public Involvement in Policy Making for Risk Assessment and Management

 

Applicants

External Experts

Critics

Consumers

Users

Permit for release (1987)

 

Hazard identification

N

N

N

N

N

Risk measurement

N

N

N

N

N

Making the decision to establish systema

F

F

F

F

F

Notification system and petition for nonregulated status (1993)

 

Hazard identificationb

I

I

I

I

I

Risk measurement

I

I

I

I

I

Making the decision to establish systemc

F

F

F

F

F

Expansion of notification system (1997)

 

Hazard identification

N

N

N

N

N

Risk measurement

N

N

N

N

N

Making the decision to establish systemd

F

F

F

F

F

The process for involving interested or affected parties is designated as F, formal process; I, informal process; N, no process available.

aProposal was published in the Federal Register, where anyone could make comments.

bDuring the 1993 proposal, APHIS co-convened an expert panel to review the proposal. APHIS also presented the proposal at several public meetings during which interested or affected parties could comment. These procedures were not repeated during the 1997 proposal.

cProposal was published in the Federal Register where anyone could make comments.

dProposal was published in the Federal Register where anyone could make comments.

noted earlier in the virus-resistant squash case and the involvement of the ABRAC. However, the third desired outcome of public involvement— improving public confidence in the decision-making process—has not received sufficient attention.

Effectiveness of External Input on Specific Decisions

APHIS’s informal procedures for consulting with outside scientific experts and the record of Federal Register notices, public comments, and APHIS responses to comments suggest that the agency’s approach has been useful in some specific cases for assembling technical information needed to exercise its regulatory authority regarding permits and peti-



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