Frontline regulators are largely responsible for the implementation and ongoing compliance with environmental laws. Yet, as with other frontline worker populations, environmental regulators are routinely overlooked. Existing acknowledgment of these regulators typically only extends to the regulatory enforcement strategy their agency employs. Missing in these conversations is a focused study on regulators themselves and their perceptions of the regulated community that they interact with daily. Understanding these perceptions will provide insights into how regulators approach their interactions and how they ensure regulatory compliance. This research reports on one-on-one interviews and a statewide survey of Ohio Environmental Protection Agency frontline regulators and their perceptions of the regulated community. Findings from this survey reveal generally positive perceptions of the regulated community in Ohio and experiences with them. These findings call attention to a neglected population and emphasize the importance of regulators' perceptions in their regulatory approach.
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/michelle_pautz/17/