10 U.S. Code § 155 - Joint Staff
(a) Appointment of Officers to Joint Staff.—
(1) There is a Joint Staff under the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. The Joint Staff assists the Chairman and, subject to the authority, direction, and control of the Chairman, the other members of the Joint Chiefs of Staff in carrying out their responsibilities.
(2) Officers of the armed forces (other than the Coast Guard) assigned to serve on the Joint Staff shall be selected by the Chairman in approximately equal numbers from—
(3) Selection of officers of an armed force to serve on the Joint Staff shall be made by the Chairman from a list of officers submitted by the Secretary of the military department having jurisdiction over that armed force. Each officer whose name is submitted shall be among those officers considered to be the most outstanding officers of that armed force. The Chairman may specify the number of officers to be included on any such list.
(b) Director.— The Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, after consultation with the other members of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and with the approval of the Secretary of Defense, may select an officer to serve as Director of the Joint Staff.
(c) Management of Joint Staff.— The Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff manages the Joint Staff and the Director of the Joint Staff. The Joint Staff shall perform such duties as the Chairman prescribes and shall perform such duties under such procedures as the Chairman prescribes.
(d) Operation of Joint Staff.— The Secretary of Defense shall ensure that the Joint Staff is independently organized and operated so that the Joint Staff supports the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff in meeting the congressional purpose set forth in the last clause of section 2 of the National Security Act of 1947 (50 U.S.C. 401)  to provide—
(e) Prohibition of Function as Armed Forces General Staff.— The Joint Staff shall not operate or be organized as an overall Armed Forces General Staff and shall have no executive authority. The Joint Staff may be organized and may operate along conventional staff lines.
(f) Tour of Duty of Joint Staff Officers.—
(1) An officer who is assigned or detailed to permanent duty on the Joint Staff may not serve for a tour of duty of more than four years. However, such a tour of duty may be extended with the approval of the Secretary of Defense.
(2) In accordance with procedures established by the Secretary of Defense, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff may suspend from duty and recommend the reassignment of any officer assigned to the Joint Staff. Upon receipt of such a recommendation, the Secretary concerned shall promptly reassign the officer.
(3) An officer completing a tour of duty with the Joint Staff may not be assigned or detailed to permanent duty on the Joint Staff within two years after relief from that duty except with the approval of the Secretary.
(g) Composition of Joint Staff.—
(1) The Joint Staff is composed of all members of the armed forces and civilian employees assigned or detailed to permanent duty in the executive part of the Department of Defense to perform the functions and duties prescribed under subsections (a) and (c).
 See References in Text note below.
Source(Added Pub. L. 99–433, title II, § 201,Oct. 1, 1986, 100 Stat. 1009; amended Pub. L. 100–180, div. A, title XIII, § 1314(b)(2),Dec. 4, 1987, 101 Stat. 1175; Pub. L. 101–510, div. A, title IX, § 902,Nov. 5, 1990, 104 Stat. 1620; Pub. L. 102–484, div. A, title IX, § 911(b)(2),Oct. 23, 1992, 106 Stat. 2473; Pub. L. 103–35, title II, § 202(a)(8),May 31, 1993, 107 Stat. 101.)
References in Text
The National Security Act of 1947, referred to in subsec. (d), is act July 26, 1947, ch. 343, 61 Stat. 495, which was formerly classified principally to chapter 15 (§ 401 et seq.) of Title 50, War and National Defense, prior to editorial reclassification in chapter 44 (§ 3001 et seq.) of Title 50. Section 2 of the Act is now classified to section 3002 of Title 50. For complete classification of this Act to the Code, see Tables.
1993—Subsec. (a)(1). Pub. L. 103–35made technical amendment to directory language of Pub. L. 102–484. See 1992 Amendment note below.
1992—Subsec. (a)(1). Pub. L. 102–484, as amended by Pub. L. 103–35, struck out “and the Vice Chairman” before “in carrying out”.
1990—Subsecs. (g), (h). Pub. L. 101–510redesignated subsec. (h) as (g) and struck out former subsec. (g) which read as follows: “Limitation on Size of Joint Staff.—(1) Effective on October 1, 1988, the total number of members of the armed forces and civilian personnel assigned or detailed to permanent duty on the Joint Staff may not exceed 1,627.
“(2) Paragraph (1) does not apply—
“(A) in time of war; or
“(B) during a national emergency declared by the President or Congress.”
1987—Subsec. (f)(4)(B). Pub. L. 100–180, § 1314(b)(2)(A), inserted “or Congress” after “by the President”.
Subsec. (g)(2)(B). Pub. L. 100–180, § 1314(b)(2)(B), inserted “the President or” after “declared by”.
Effective Date of 1993 Amendment
Pub. L. 103–35, title II, § 202(b),May 31, 1993, 107 Stat. 102, provided that: “The amendments made by this section [amending this section, sections 1079, 1086a, 1174a, 1463, 2323, 2347, 2391, and 2410d of this title, and sections 5013 and 5113 of former Title 36, Patriotic Societies and Observances, and amending provisions set out as notes under sections 664, 2350a, 2431, 2501, 2505, 10105, and 12681 of this title and section 5611 of Title 15, Commerce and Trade] shall apply as if included in the enactment of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 1993 (Public Law 102–484).”
Transfer of Functions
For transfer of authorities, functions, personnel, and assets of the Coast Guard, including the authorities and functions of the Secretary of Transportation relating thereto, to the Department of Homeland Security, and for treatment of related references, see sections 468 (b), 551 (d), 552 (d), and 557 of Title 6, Domestic Security, and the Department of Homeland Security Reorganization Plan of November 25, 2002, as modified, set out as a note under section 542 of Title 6.
Increased Flexibility in Use of Funds for Joint Staff Exercises
“(a) In General.—Amounts available to the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff for joint staff exercises may be available for any expenses as follows:
“(1) Expenses of the Armed Forces in connection with such exercises, including expense relating to self-deploying watercraft under the jurisdiction of a military department.
“(2) Expenses relating to the costs of port support activities in connection with such exercises, including transportation and port handling.
“(3) Expenses relating to the breakout and operation of prepositioned watercraft and lighterage for joint logistics and over the shore exercises in connection with such exercises.
“(b) Supplement Not Supplant.—Any amounts made available by the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff under subsection (a) for expenses covered by that subsection are in addition to any other amounts available under law for such expenses.”
Assistants to Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff for National Guard Matters and for Reserve Matters
Pub. L. 105–85, div. A, title IX, § 901,Nov. 18, 1997, 111 Stat. 1853, as amended by Pub. L. 109–163, div. A, title V, § 515(h),Jan. 6, 2006, 119 Stat. 3237, which established the positions of Assistant to the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff for National Guard Matters and Assistant to the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff for Reserve Matters within the Joint Staff, was repealed and restated as section 155a of this title by Pub. L. 112–239, § 511(a), (c),Jan. 2, 2013, 126 Stat. 1717, 1718.
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