Reorganization Plan Could Realign Numerous Federal Agencies

A plan to reorganize the U.S. federal government, which was released by the Trump Administration on 21 June 2018, outlined 32 ideas for streamlining or reorienting federal offices, most of which will require congressional approval. Select proposals are presented below:

Army Corps of Engineers

Proposals include moving the Army Corps of Engineers Civil Works (Corps) out of the Department of Defense (DOD) and into the Department of Transportation (DOT) and Department of the Interior (DOI) to consolidate and align Corps civil works missions with these agencies. Under this proposal, the Corps commercial navigation functions would move to DOT, whose mission already includes Federal responsibility for all other modes of transportation. All other activities, including flood and storm damage reduction, aquatic ecosystem restoration, hydropower, regulatory, and other activities, would move to DOI.

National Marine Fisheries Service

Another proposal would merge the Department of Commerce’s (DOC) National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) with the Department of the Interior’s (DOI) U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS). This merger would consolidate the administration of the Endangered Species Act (ESA) and Marine Mammal Protection Act (MMPA) in one agency and combine the Services’ science and management capacity, impacting Federal fisheries and wildlife policy and service to stakeholders and the public, particularly on infrastructure permitting.

Department of Transportation

A third proposal would reorganize the Department of Transportation (DOT). The proposal would spin-off Federal responsibility for operating air traffic control services and locks along the Saint Lawrence Seaway, integrate into DOT certain coastal and inland waterways commercial navigation activities and transportation security programs, and reassess the structure and responsibilities of DOT’s Office of the Secretary.

Department of Energy

A fourth proposal would consolidate the Department of Energy’s (DOE) applied energy programs into a new Office of Energy Innovation. It would also establish a parallel Office of Energy Resources and Economic Strategy, which would focus on solutions that support U.S. energy access to resources and infrastructure. Finally, it would maintain the Office of Cybersecurity, Energy Security, and Emergency Response, which would protect energy infrastructure from increasingly sophisticated threats and ensure energy restoration following disasters.

The full 32-page government reorganization proposal is available here.

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