40 CFR § 1.37 - Office of External Affairs.

§ 1.37 Office of External Affairs.

(a) Office of Federal Activities. The Office of Federal Activities is headed by a Director who reports to the Assistant Administrator for External Affairs and supervises all the functions of the Office. The Director acts as national program manager for five major programs that include:

(1) The review of other agency environmental impact statements and other major actions under the authority of Section 309 of the Clean Air Act;

(2) EPA compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) and related laws, directives, and Executive policies concerning special environmental areas and cultural resources;

(3) Compliance with Executive policy on American Indian affairs and the development of programs for environmental protection on Indian lands; and

(4) The development and oversight of national programs and internal policies, strategies, and procedures for implementing Executive Order 12088 and other administrative or statutory provisions concerning compliance with environmental requirements by Federal facilities. The Director chairs the Standing Committee on Implementation of Executive Order 12088. The Office serves as the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) principal point of contact and liaison with other Federal agencies and provides consultation and technical assistance to those agencies relating to EPA's areas of expertise and responsibility. The Office administers the filing and information system for all Federal Environmental Impact Statements under agreement with the Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) and provides liaison with CEQ on this function and related matters of NEPA program administration. The Office provides a central point of information for EPA and the public on environmental impact assessment techniques and methodologies.

(b) Office of Public Affairs. The Office of Public Affairs is under the supervision of a Director who serves as chief spokesperson for the Agency and as a principal adviser, along with the Assistant Administrator for External Affairs, to the Adminstrator, Deputy Administrator, and Senior Management Officials, on public affairs aspects of the Agency's activities and programs. The Office of Public Affairs provides to the media adequate and timely information as well as responses to queries from the media on all EPA program activities. It assures that the policy of openness in all information matters, as enunciated by the Administrator, is honored in all respects. Develops publications to inform the general public of major EPA programs and activities; it also develops informational materials for internal EPA use in Headquarters and at the Regions, Labs and Field Offices. It maintains clearance systems and procedures for periodicals and nontechnical information developed by EPA for public distribution, and reviews all publications for public affairs interests. The Office of Public Affairs provides policy direction for, and coordination and oversight of EPA's community relations program. It provides a system for ensuring that EPA educates citizens and responds to their concerns about all environmental issues and assures that there are opportunities for public involvement in the resolution of problems. The Office supervises the production of audio-visual materials, including graphics, radio and video materials, for the general public and for internal audiences, in support of EPA policies and programs. The Office provides program direction and professional review of the performance of public affairs functions in the Regional Offices of EPA, as well as at laboratories and other field offices. The Office of Public Affairs is responsible for reviewing interagency agreements and Headquarters purchase request requisitions expected to result in contracts in the area of public information and community relations. It develops proposals and reviews Headquarters grant applications under consideration when public affairs goals are involved.

(c) Office of Legislative Analysis. The Office of Legislative Analysis, under the supervision of a Director who serves in the capacity of Legislative Counsel, is responsible for legislative drafting and liaison activities relating to the Agency's programs. It exercises responsibility for legislative drafting; reports to the Office of Management and Budget and congressional committees on proposed legislation and pending and enrolled bills, as required by OMB Circular No. A-19 and Bulletin No. 72-6; provides testimony on legislation and other matters before congressional committees; and reviews transcripts of legislative hearings. It maintains liaison with the Office of Congressional Liaison on all Agency activities of interest to the Congress. The Office works closely with the staffs of various Assistant Administrators, Associate Administrators, Regional Administrators, and Staff Office Directors in accordance with established Agency procedures, in the development of the Agency's legislative program. The Office assists the Assistant Administrator for External Affairs and the Agency's senior policy officials in guiding legislative initiatives through the legislative process. It advises the Assistant Administrator for Administration and Resources Management in matters pertaining to appropriations legislation. It works closely with the Office of Federal Activities to assure compliance with Agency procedures for the preparation of environmental impact statements, in relation to proposed legislation and reports on legislation. The Office coordinates with the Office of Management and Budget, other agencies, and congressional staff members on matters within its area of responsibility; and develops suggested State and local environmental legislative proposals, using inputs provided by other Agency components. The Legislative Reference Library provides legislative research services for the Agency. The Library secures and furnishes congressional materials to all EPA employees and, if available, to other Government agencies and private organizations; and it also provides the service of securing, upon request, EPA reports and materials for the Congress.

(d) Office of Congressional Liaison. The Office of Congressional Liaison is under the supervision of a Director who serves as the principal adviser to the Administrator with respect to congressional activities. All of the functions and responsibilities of the Director are Agencywide and apply to the provision of services with respect to all of the programs and activities of the Agency. The Office serves as the principal point of congressional contact with the Agency and maintains an effective liaison with the Congress on Agency activities of interest to the Congress and, as necessary, maintains liaison with Agency Regional and field officials, other Government agencies, and public and private groups having an interest in legislative matters affecting the Agency. It assures the provision of prompt response to the Congress on all inquiries relating to activities of the Agency; and monitors and coordinates the continuing operating contacts between the staff of the Office of the Comptroller and staff of the Appropriations Subcommittees of Congress.

(e) Office of Community and Intergovernmental Relations. The Office of Community and Intergovernmental Relations is under the supervision of a Director who serves as the principal point of contact with public interest groups representing general purpose State and local governments, and is the principal source of advice and information for the Administrator and the Assistant Administrator for External Affairs on intergovernmental relations. The Office maintains liaison on intergovernmental issues with the White House and Office of Management and Budget (OMB); identifies and seeks solutions to emerging intergovernmental issues; recommends and coordinates personal involvement by the Administrator and Deputy Administrator in relations with State, county, and local government officials; coordinates and assists Headquarters components in their handling of broad-gauged and issue-oriented intergovernmental problems. It works with the Regional Administrators and the Office of Regional Operations to encourage the adoption of improved methods for dealing effectively with State and local governments on specific EPA program initiatives; works with the Immediate Office of the Administrator, Office of Congressional Liaison, Office of Public Affairs, and the Regional Offices to develop and carry out a comprehensive liaison program; and tracks legislative initiatives which affect the Agency's intergovernmental relations. It advises and supports the Office Director in implementing the President's Environmental Youth Awards program.

[50 FR 26721, June 28, 1985, as amended at 52 FR 30359, Aug. 14, 1987]