October 5, 1994
TO THE HEADS OF EXECUTIVE DEPARTMENTS AND ESTABLISHMENTS
SUBJECT: Management of Federal Advisory Committees
5. Required Action
6. OMB Responsibilities
7. GSA Responsibilities
8. Information Contact
9. Termination Review Date
10. Effective Date
On June 28, 1994, the Vice President issued a memorandum reiterating Administration policy regarding the maintenance of the reduction targets mandated by Executive Order 12838, as well as new guidance relating to Executive Branch action on advisory committees proposed by statute. The Vice President's memorandum also called for additional savings in committee costs over and above those achieved under E.O. 12838, as recommended by the National Performance Review (NPR).
Agencies should review and eliminate advisory committees that are obsolete, duplicative, low priority or serve a special, rather than national interest. New advisory committees should be established only when essential to the attainment of clearly defined Executive Branch priorities, as defined by E.O. 12838, and when they will not exceed an agency's advisory committee ceiling as established by the Executive order's reduction requirement.
The Administration will generally not support the establishment of new statutory committees or legislative language that exempts advisory committees from coverage under the Federal Advisory Committee Act (FACA). In addition, each agency should make a concerted effort to work with its Congressional oversight committees to reduce the number of existing committees required by statute.
A "non-discretionary advisory committee" is an advisory committee either mandated by Presidential directive or by statute and is subject to the Federal Advisory Committee Act. A "non-discretionary advisory committee" mandated by statute is: (1) specifically identified by name, specific purpose or function in statute, and (2) a committee whose creation or termination is beyond an agency's legal discretion. Advisory committees referenced by general ( non-specific) authorizing language or committee report language will not be considered "non-discretionary." In addition, where a statute requires an advisory committee as defined above, but allows for one or more committees, only one committee shall be considered to be required by statute.
(b) plans for the establishment of any new advisory committees during the coming fiscal year;
(c) a summary of actions taken to ensure the advisory committee reduction goal is maintained; and
(d) the results of a review of non-discretionary advisory committees and plans to continue, terminate or merge these groups through legislation. This will include a list of those committees established by specific statutory authority during the current fiscal year regardless of their coverage under the Federal Advisory Committee Act.
(b) set advisory committee ceilings for each agency within the government-wide advisory committee reduction goal established by the Executive order;
(c) work with agencies to control the establishment of statutory advisory committees and develop legislation to terminate those non-discretionary committees which are no longer necessary;
(d) ensure that relevant legislation is reviewed consistent with OMB Circular A-19; and
(e) ensure agencies meet the cost reduction target recommended by the Vice President's National Performance Review.
(b) assist OMB in its management and oversight of advisory committees, including tracking agency compliance with the reduction goals specified by E.O. 12838;
(c) develop guidance, specific reporting formats and instructions to implement Section 5 of this Circular. To the extent practicable, new reporting requirements will be limited to information not readily available through existing sources of data;
(d) provide recommendations to OMB and each agency regarding the continuance or management of advisory committees as required by Section 7(b) of FACA, which mandates an annual comprehensive review of all advisory committees; and
(e) implement section 5(2) of this Circular.