Simple answer, the NFPA. In every community there are fire houses, usually with a Fire Chief. These are the guys who tout the code.
The Uniform State Building Codes almost always accept the NFPA documents with no revision, and the International Codes pretty much do the same thing.
That said, do I think there should be some quicker method of challenge? Yes I do, and I say that as a member of the NFPA Electrical Section, as well as the "Architects, Engineers and Building Officals" group. IOW, I think they are often accepted without qualification and need some better checks and balances, but on the whole, good group.
You can become a member of the NFPA (expensive), but it may be more worthwhile to become active in your State or local Department of Housing and Community Development groups, this is where the decisions are made that affect you the most.