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ua14no94 DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION (ED)...
<DOC> DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE (DOD) Statement of Regulatory Priorities Background The Department of Defense (DoD) is the largest Federal Department, consisting of three Military Departments (Army, Navy, and Air Force), nine Unified Combatant Commands, 16 Defense Agencies, and nine DoD Field Activities. It has over 1,600,000 military personnel and 900,000 civilians assigned as of June 30, 1994, and over 500 military installations and properties in the continental United States, U.S. Territories, and foreign countries. The overall size, composition, and dispersion of the Department of Defense, coupled with a new and innovative regulatory program, presents a challenge to the management of the Defense regulatory program under Executive Order (E.O.) 12866 of September 30, 1993. Because of its nature, composition, and size, the DoD is impacted by the regulations issued by regulatory agencies such as the Departments of Energy, Health and Human Services, Housing and Urban Development, Labor, and Transportation, and the Environmental Protection Agency. In order to develop the best possible regulations that embody the principles and objectives embedded in E.O. 12866, there must be coordination of proposed regulations among the regulating agencies and the affected Defense Components. Coordinating the proposed regulations in advance throughout an organization as large as the DoD is straightforward, yet a formidable undertaking. The DoD is not a regulatory agency, but in the course of its operations, does issue regulations on occasion. These regulations, while small in number compared to those of the regulating agencies, can be significant as defined in E.O. 12866. In addition, these regulations may impact the regulatory agencies. An example of this is the Base Closure Community Revitalization requiring coordination with the Departments of Housing and Urban Development and Health and Human Services. DoD, as a part of its new program, is not only receiving coordinating actions from the regulating agencies, but is coordinating with the agencies that are impacted by its regulations. The regulatory program for the DoD fully incorporates the provisions of the President's priorities and objectives under E.O. 12866. Promulgating and implementing the new regulatory program throughout DoD presents a unique challenge to the management of our regulatory efforts. Coordination Interagency DoD has been receiving regulatory plans from those agencies that impact the operation of the Department through the issuance of regulations. A system for coordinating the review process is in place, regulations have been reviewed, and comments have been forwarded to the Office of Management and Budget. The system is working in the Department and the feedback from the Defense Components is most encouraging. For the first time, they are able to see and comment on regulations from the other agencies before they are required to comply with them. In a similar manner, DoD has coordinated its significant regulation on community revitalization with the Department of Housing and Urban Development, the Department of Health and Human Services, the General Services Administration, and the public. The coordination process in DoD is working as outlined in E.O. 12866. Internal Through regulatory program points of contact in the Department, we have established a system that provides information from the Vice President and the Administrator of the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA) to the personnel responsible for the development and implementation of DoD regulations. Conversely, the system provides feedback from DoD regulatory personnel to the Administrator, OIRA. The changes in the internal communications on the regulatory program have been well received within the Department. Overall Priorities The Department of Defense needs to function at a reasonable cost, while eliminating ineffective and unnecessarily burdensome regulations. The process should respond in a timely manner, be efficient, cost- effective, and both fair and perceived as fair. This is being done at a time when there is significant downsizing in the Department and it will need to react to the contradictory pressures of providing more services with fewer resources. The Department of Defense, as a matter of overall priority for its regulatory program, adheres to the general principles set forth in E.O. 12866 as amplified below. Problem Identification Congress typically passes legislation to authorize or require DoD to issue regulations and often is quite specific about the problem identified for correction. Generally, DoD does not initiate regulations as a part of its mission. The significant regulatory action for this year on community revitalization is an example. DoD will work closely with the Congress and the Administration in this area to identify the problem requiring solution, assess its overall significance, and identify the performance-based outcomes desired for a regulatory solution to the problem. Conflicting Regulations DoD does not have a large number of significant regulations and the probability of developing conflicting regulations is low. On the other hand, DoD is impacted to a great degree by the regulating agencies. From that perspective, DoD is in a position to advise the regulatory agencies of conflicts that appear to exist using the coordination processes that have been developed as a part of the new way of doing business in the DoD and Federal agency regulatory programs. It is a priority in the Department to communicate with other agencies and the affected public to identify and proactively pursue regulatory problems that occur as a result of conflicting regulations both within and without the Department. Alternatives DoD will identify feasible alternatives that will obtain the desired regulatory objectives. Where possible, the Department encourages the use of incentives to include financial, quality of life, and others to achieve the desired regulatory results. For example, in the significant regulatory action planned for 1995, the public sector is encouraged to acquire base closure properties through outright purchase, or where markets are not ready, to have the property conveyed without cost to the redevelopment authority. As a further incentive, developers are encouraged to acquire the property through a conveyance and still repay the DoD through a profit-sharing mechanism. This innovative approach fully supports the President's regulatory initiatives. Risk Assessment A priority in DoD is the assessment and minimization of risk. In the proposed regulation on community revitalization, the risk is ameliorated by incorporating the alternatives involving the risk into the regulation. The Department will either recover the cost of the property through outright sale, or in the case of conveyance, recover the cost later in a financial arrangement with the redevelopment authority. Cost-Effectiveness One of the highest priority objectives of DoD is to obtain the desired regulatory objective by the most cost-effective method available. This may or may not be through the regulatory process. If a regulation is required, DoD will consider incentives for innovation to achieve desired results, consistency in the application of the regulation, predictability of the activity outcome (achieving the expected results), and the costs for regulation development, enforcement, and compliance. These will include costs to the public, government, and regulated entities, using the best available data or parametric analysis methods, to be used in the cost-benefit analysis and the decisionmaking process. In the current significant regulatory action involving community revitalization, the cost of the regulation to the Government is basically the cost of developing the procedures to dispose of excess real and personal property in the event of a base closure. In return, the Government will receive reimbursement in the event of a direct sale or profit sharing in certain conveyance situations. Cost-effectiveness will be achieved. Cost-Benefit Conducting cost-benefit analyses on regulation alternatives is a priority in the Department of Defense so as to ensure that the potential benefits to society outweigh the costs. Evaluations of these alternatives are done quantitatively or qualitatively or both, depending on the nature of the problem being solved and the type of information and data available on the subject. DoD is committed to considering the most important alternative approaches to the problem being solved and providing the reasoning for selecting the proposed regulatory change over the other alternatives. DoD furthers its commitment to the use of cost-benefit analysis through its involvement in the Cost-Benefit Subgroup of the Regulatory Working Group. That sub-group is now working on the draft Regulatory Impact Analysis Guidance that will have Governmentwide implications for its implementation and use in the regulatory process. Information-Based Decisions Lack of information in the rulemaking process has been a serious problem and it is a priority regulatory issue with the DoD. The new thrust of E.O. 12866 with open communications among other Federal agencies, State, local, and tribal governments, public interest groups, and the public at large is a great step towards solving this problem. In addition, the pressures of time also require agencies to make decisions without as much information as they would like to have. To solve this problem, in part, a priority of the DoD is to use the latest information technology to provide access to the latest technical, scientific, and demographic information in a timely manner through world-wide communications which are available on the ``information highway.'' Furthermore, the Department intends to use more automation in the Notice and Comment Rulemaking process, which should also reduce time pressures in the rulemaking process. DoD is an active participant in the Information Technology Subgroup of the Regulatory Working Group and is sharing information about the use of technology in the regulatory process with other agencies. Performance-Based Regulations Where appropriate, DoD plans to develop performance-based standards that will allow the regulated parties to achieve the regulatory objective in the most cost-effective manner. Outreach Initiatives DoD is taking steps to seek the views of appropriate State, local, and tribal officials and the public in implementing measures to enhance public awareness and participation both in developing and implementing regulatory programs. In its most recent significant regulation concerning revitalization of the communities, the Department has received hundreds of comments from the public and held a public hearing involving focus groups. Reaching out to organizations and individuals who are affected by, or involved in, the particular regulatory action is a significant regulatory priority of the Department. Coordination DoD has embraced the coordination process between and among other Federal agencies in the development of new and revised regulations. This year, the DoD has coordinated its significant regulatory action with the Department of Health and Human Services, the Department of Housing and Urban Development, and the General Services Administration. In addition, for the first time ever, DoD has received regulatory plans from key regulatory agencies and has established a systematic approach to providing the plans to the appropriate policy officials within the Department. Feedback from the DoD Components indicates that the communication among the Federal agencies is a major step toward improving regulations and the regulatory process, and improving overall Government operations as well. Minimize Burden In the regulatory process, there are more complaints concerning burden than anything else. In DoD, much of the burden is in the acquisition process. By reforming the acquisition process, DoD can make a significant contribution to reducing this burden, but DoD cannot do it alone. Over the years, acquisition regulations have grown and become burdensome principally because of legislative action, enacted for laudable reasons. In coordination with Congress, the Office of Federal Procurement Policy, and the public, DoD plans significant reforms to the acquisition system. The result is anticipated to be major reductions in the regulatory burden on the government and public sectors. To effect these changes, DoD has established and staffed the Office of the Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition Reform. Simple Design Ensuring that regulations are simple and easy to understand is a high regulatory priority in the Department of Defense. All too often the regulations are complicated, difficult to understand, and subject to misinterpretation, all of which can result in the costly process of litigation. The objective in the development of regulations is to write them in clear, concise language that is simple and easy to understand. In summary, the rulemaking process in DoD should produce a rule that addresses an identifiable problem, implements the law, implements the President's policies including E.O. 12866, is in the public interest, is consistent with other rules and policies, is based on the best information available, is rationally justified, is cost-effective, can actually be implemented, is acceptable and enforceable, is easily understood, and stays in effect only as long as is necessary. Specific Priorities For this Regulatory Plan, there are four specific DoD priorities, all of which reflect the regulatory principles established in E.O. 12866. For 1995, there is only one significant regulatory action, but in those areas where rulemaking or participation in the regulatory process is required, DoD is developing policy and regulation that incorporates not only the provisions of the President's priorities and objectives under E.O. 12866, but also the National Performance Review, dated September 1993. The DoD has focused its regulatory resources on the most serious environmental, health, and safety risks. Perhaps most significant is that each of the four priorities described below promulgates regulations to offset the resource impacts of Federal decisions on the public or to improve the quality of public life such as those regulations concerning base closures, the wetlands, acquisition, and health care delivery. Revitalize Communities Due to Base Closure On July 2, 1993, President Clinton announced his five-part plan for the economic revitalization of communities where military bases are slated to close. The plan, ``A Program to Revitalize Base Closure Communities,'' is a high administration priority. DoD has worked with representatives of the National Economic Council and the Congress to develop legislation that would enable DoD to implement the plan. Title XXIX of the National Defense Authorization Act for fiscal year 1994 includes the enabling provisions. The interim final rule published at 59 FR 16123, April 6, 1994, encompasses two supporting DoD significant regulatory actions that promulgate guidance required by section 2903 of the Act, and provides interpretive guidance concerning other changes to the base realignment and closure process generated by Title XXIX of the Act. In recognition of the President's goal to minimize the impact of base closure on the local community's prospects for employment and economic recovery, DoD will be working closely with others to identify problems requiring solutions and identify performance-based outcomes for each base closure initiative requiring regulation. DoD has worked closely among all of the Military Departments, with other Federal agencies and State and local authorities, as well as Congress. In the case of real property screening, after DoD identifies what it needs to retain, the procedures provide for the Departments of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and Health and Human Services (HHS) to be involved in determining the suitability of and interest in surplus property for homeless use. Specifically tailored for base closure properties, an additional screening is aimed at early identification of the needs of the homeless. In order to accomplish this and the subsequent processes of identifying property for disposal and the process for its disposal or conveyance to another, the DoD has emphasized participation by the public. This ensures that the new community has optimum opportunity for achieving revitalization that is in the interest of the public good. In this instance, DoD has developed innovative approaches to ensure that property is conveyed in the most cost-effective way possible. One of the most effective mechanisms in this regard has been that DoD has empowered the Military Departments throughout the entire process to work directly with other Federal agencies, homeless providers and reuse planners. Furthermore, when conveyance is not possible, Military Departments have been delegated disposal authority, thereby resulting in responsibility and accountability for real property from ``cradle to grave.'' One more alternative has been included in the regulations involving the leasing of real property early in the reuse process. This process was established as an effective way to quickly attract new jobs to replace those that have been lost by the base closing. In addition, it is an alternative to allow suitable economic reuse to occur until clean-up measures can correct contaminated property and thereby make it available for conveyance. DoD has minimized the risk of proposed base closure regulations by achieving the desired objectives by the most cost-effective methods which will result in optimizing the cost benefit to all parties involved. Throughout the process, DoD has ensured that potential benefits to society outweigh the costs. Prior to the interim final rule, there was no guidance for ensuring that local redevelopment plans would be comprehensive and embrace the range of feasible reuse options that will result in rapid job creation. When appraising property for disposal, the procedures have been established to take into consideration uncertainties and risks in property development as well as the impact of base closure on market conditions. Moreover, the appraisal will reflect the most likely range of uses consistent with local interests rather than highest and best use. To assist in
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