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MISSION AND ORGANIZATION OF THE DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE

Number: DOO 1-1
Effective Date: 2012-11-09

SECTION 1. PURPOSE.

.01 This Order prescribes the mission, functions and organization of the Department of Commerce (the Department).

.02 This revision: revokes Appendix A and replaces Executive Order (E.O.) 13242 dated December 18, 2001, with E.O. 13613, “Providing an Order of Succession Within the Department of Commerce,” dated May 21, 2012; revokes Appendix B, White House Memorandum, “Designation of Officers of the Department of Commerce to Act as Secretary of Commerce,” dated October 3, 2002; removes, per P.L. 110-69 (August 2007), the Technology Administration, which has been abolished; updates the title of the NIST Director to the Under Secretary of Commerce for Standards and Technology; and updates the Department’s organization chart.

SECTION 2. MISSION, FUNCTIONS AND AUTHORITY.

.01 The historic mission of the Department is “to foster, promote, and develop the foreign and domestic commerce” of the United States. This has evolved, as a result of legislative and administrative additions, to encompass broadly the responsibility to foster, serve, and promote the Nation’s economic development and technological advancement. The Department fulfills this mission by:

a. Participating with other Government agencies in the creation of national policy, through the President’s Cabinet and its subdivisions.

b. Promoting and assisting international trade.

c. Strengthening the international economic position of the United States.

d. Promoting progressive domestic business policies and growth.

e. Improving comprehension and uses of the physical environment and its oceanic life.

f. Ensuring effective use and growth of the Nation’s scientific and technical resources.

g. Acquiring, analyzing, and disseminating information regarding the Nation and the economy to help achieve increased social and economic benefit.

h. Assisting states, communities, and individuals with economic progress.

.02 The specific functions and programs of the Department that make up the broad activities, above, are authorized by the Department’s organic statute (Act of February 14, 1903, 32 Stat. 826) or by other legislation. They also include responsibilities transferred from other Government agencies by Presidential Reorganization Plans, and responsibilities assigned to the Secretary of Commerce or the Department by Executive Order or other actions of the President.

.03 Functions (including powers, authorities, duties and responsibilities) of the Department of Commerce are by law vested directly in the Secretary of Commerce, except for those vested by the Administrative Procedure Act in administrative law judges.

.04 .04 The Secretary is vested by legislation (e.g., 5 U.S.C. 301) and Reorganization Plans with an authority to provide for the organization and general management of the Department. Reorganization Plan No. 5 of 1950, in particular, provides that:

"The Secretary of Commerce may from time to time make such provisions as [the Secretary] shall deem appropriate authorizing the performance by any officer, or by any agency or employee, of the Department of Commerce of any function of the Secretary...."

.05 The principal organizational components and officers of the Department are established either by statute or Reorganization Plan, or by the Secretary pursuant to the authorities referred to above. The Secretary determines the functions to be carried out by the principal organizational components and the authorities exercised by the principal officers of the Department. These are normally prescribed by the Secretary in Department Organization Orders (DOOs). Unless a DOO expressly provides to the contrary, delegations of Secretarial authority constitute only a sharing of that authority, and coequal authority is reserved by the Secretary.

SECTION 3. ORGANIZATION STRUCTURE.

The attached chart (see Exhibit 1) depicts the organizational structure of the Department which has been established through DOOs issued for each of the principal organizational components and officers of the Department. The chart reflects the following general organizational plan for the Department.

a. Office of the Secretary.

1. The Office of the Secretary is the general management arm of the Department and provides the principal support to the Secretary in formulating policy and in providing advice to the President. It provides program leadership for the Department’s functions and exercises general supervision over the operating units. It also directly carries out program functions as may be assigned by the Secretary, and provides, as determined to be more economic or efficient, administrative and other support services for designated operating units.

2. The Office of the Secretary consists of the Secretary, certain Secretarial Officers, designated staff immediately serving those officials, and a number of “Departmental offices” which have Department-wide functions or perform special program functions directly on behalf of the Secretary.

3. Secretarial Officers located in the Office of the Secretary:

  • Deputy Secretary
  • General Counsel
  • Chief Financial Officer and Assistant Secretary for Administration
  • Assistant Secretary for Legislative and Intergovernmental Affairs

b. Secretarial Officers of the Department.

1. The Secretarial Officers are:

  • Deputy Secretary
  • General Counsel
  • Under Secretary for Economic Affairs
  • Under Secretary for International Trade
  • Under Secretary of Commerce for Oceans and Atmosphere and Administrator of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
  • Under Secretary for Industry and Security
  • Under Secretary of Commerce for Standards and Technology
  • Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of the United States Patent and Trademark Office
  • Chief Financial Officer and Assistant Secretary for Administration
  • Assistant Secretary for Legislative and Intergovernmental Affairs
  • Assistant Secretary for Economic Development
  • Assistant Secretary for Communications and Information
  • Inspector General

2. The Deputy Secretary serves as the principal deputy of the Secretary in all matters affecting the Department and performs continuing and special duties as the Secretary may assign including, as may be specified by the Secretary, the exercise of policy direction and general supervision over operating units not placed under other Secretarial Officers or other Department officials.

3. The Chief Financial Officer and Assistant Secretary for Administration, Assistant Secretary for Legislative and Intergovernmental Affairs, Inspector General, and General Counsel are the Secretary’s principal assistants on administrative management, congressional and legislative relations, oversight of programs and operations, and legal matters of the Department.

4. The other Secretarial Officers (referred to as “Program Secretarial Officers”) are the Secretary’s principal assistants on program management matters, each being responsible for a particular program area of the Department. This responsibility may include policy direction and general supervision over an assigned operating unit charged with carrying out programs, or direct supervision by serving as the head of a primary operating unit.

c. Operating units.

1. The operating units of the Department are organizational entities outside the Office of the Secretary charged with carrying out specified substantive functions (i.e., programs) of the Department. The heads of some operating units are Program Secretarial Officers; in other cases, they are officers who report to and are responsible to a Program Secretarial Officer or directly to the Secretary or Deputy Secretary, as may be specified (see subparagraph 3.b.2.). The operating units are the components of the Department through which most of its substantive functions are carried out.

2. For Department management purposes, each operating unit is designated as being in one of the following two organizational classes:

(a) Primary operating units are organizations assigned broad substantive functions of the Department. The Secretary delegates directly to the heads of these units the authority necessary to carry out the functions of their units. Heads of primary operating units are the operating general managers of the Department.

(b) Constituent operating units are organizations assigned limited substantive functions, or functions supporting a primary operating unit. Heads of these units may receive delegations of authority directly from the Secretary, or carry out their responsibilities under authorities delegated through a Secretarial Officer, subject to the latter’s direct supervision.

SECTION 4. OFFICERS DESIGNATED TO PERFORM THE DUTIES OF THE SECRETARY.

.01 The Deputy Secretary performs such duties and exercises such powers as the Secretary may from time to time prescribe and shall perform the duties of the Secretary of Commerce as Acting Secretary in case of absence or incapacity of the Secretary and in case of a vacancy in the Office of the Secretary.

.02 During any period when by reason of absence, disability, or vacancy in office, neither the Secretary of Commerce nor the Deputy Secretary of Commerce is available to exercise the powers or perform the duties of the Office of the Secretary, the President has directed the officers of the Department of Commerce, to act as Secretary in such order as reflected in E.O. 13613 of May 21, 2012 (Exhibit 2).

.03 No individual who is serving in an office listed in section 1(a)-(i) of E.O. 13613 in an acting capacity shall, by virtue of so serving, act as Secretary pursuant to E.O. 13613.

.04 Notwithstanding these provisions, the President retains discretion, to the extent permitted by the Federal Vacancies Reform Act of 1998, to depart from this order of succession in designating an Acting Secretary.

SECTION 5. OFFICERS DESIGNATED TO PERFORM THE DUTIES OF OTHER SECRETARIAL OFFICERS AND HEADS OF OPERATING UNITS.

.01 If an officer of the Department of Commerce, whose appointment to office is required to be made by the President, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate, dies, resigns or is otherwise unable to perform the functions and duties of the office, the first assistant to the office of such officer shall perform the functions and duties of the office temporarily in an acting capacity, subject to the limitations set forth in the Federal Vacancies Reform Act of 1998.

.02 During any period when by reason of absence, disability, or vacancy in office, neither the officer nor the first assistant to the office is available to exercise the powers or perform the duties of the office, the President may, in accordance with the Federal Vacancies Reform Act of 1998, direct another person to perform the functions and duties of the vacant office in an acting capacity.

.03 If, pursuant to the limitations in the Federal Vacancies Reform Act of 1998, no person is performing the functions and duties of an office in an acting capacity in accordance with paragraphs .01 or .02 above, then the Secretary may designate an official who, while not bearing the title “acting,” will perform the functions and duties of that office, and the issue of designating the acting Secretarial Officer or head of operating unit shall be referred to the President.

SECTION 6. EFFECT ON OTHER ORDERS.

This Order supersedes Department Organization Order 1-1, dated April 4, 2005.

Signed by: Acting Secretary of Commerce

Attachments

Appendix A: Executive Order 13242

Appendix B: White House Memorandum, "Designation of Officers of the Department of Commerce to Act as Secretary of Commerce," dated October 3, 2002

Appendix C: Executive Order 13613

Office of Privacy and Open Government
Office of the Chief Financial Officer and Assistant Secretary for Administration
U.S. Department of Commerce

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