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§ 11.
Establishment of the Council of the Inspectors General on Integrity and Efficiency
(a)
Establishment and Mission.—
(1)
Establishment.—
There is established as an independent entity within the executive branch the Council of the Inspectors General on Integrity and Efficiency (in this section referred to as the “Council”).
(2)
Mission.—
The mission of the Council shall be to—
(A) address integrity, economy, and effectiveness issues that transcend individual Government agencies; and
(B) increase the professionalism and effectiveness of personnel by developing policies, standards, and approaches to aid in the establishment of a well-trained and highly skilled workforce in the offices of the Inspectors General.
(b)
Membership.—
(1)
In general.—
The Council shall consist of the following members:
(A)
All Inspectors General whose offices are established under—
(i) section 2; or
(ii) section 8G.
(B) The Inspectors General of the Intelligence Community and the Central Intelligence Agency.
(C) The Controller of the Office of Federal Financial Management.
(D) A senior level official of the Federal Bureau of Investigation designated by the Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
(E) The Director of the Office of Government Ethics.
(F) The Special Counsel of the Office of Special Counsel.
(G) The Deputy Director of the Office of Personnel Management.
(H) The Deputy Director for Management of the Office of Management and Budget.
(I) The Inspectors General of the Library of Congress, Capitol Police, Government Publishing Office, Government Accountability Office, and the Architect of the Capitol.
(2)
Chairperson and executive chairperson.—
(A)
Executive chairperson.—
The Deputy Director for Management of the Office of Management and Budget shall be the Executive Chairperson of the Council.
(B)
Chairperson.—
The Council shall elect 1 of the Inspectors General referred to in paragraph (1)(A) or (B) to act as Chairperson of the Council. The term of office of the Chairperson shall be 2 years.
(3)
Functions of chairperson and executive chairperson.—
(A)
Executive chairperson.—
The Executive Chairperson shall—
(i) preside over meetings of the Council;
(ii) provide to the heads of agencies and entities represented on the Council summary reports of the activities of the Council; and
(iii) provide to the Council such information relating to the agencies and entities represented on the Council as assists the Council in performing its functions.
(B)
Chairperson.—
The Chairperson shall—
(i)
convene meetings of the Council—
(I) at least 6 times each year;(II) monthly to the extent possible; and(III) more frequently at the discretion of the Chairperson;
(ii) carry out the functions and duties of the Council under subsection (c);
(iii) appoint a Vice Chairperson to assist in carrying out the functions of the Council and act in the absence of the Chairperson, from a category of Inspectors General described in subparagraph (A)(i), (A)(ii), or (B) of paragraph (1), other than the category from which the Chairperson was elected;
(iv) make such payments from funds otherwise available to the Council as may be necessary to carry out the functions of the Council;
(v) select, appoint, and employ personnel as needed to carry out the functions of the Council subject to the provisions of title 5, United States Code, governing appointments in the competitive service, and the provisions of chapter 51 and subchapter III of chapter 53 of such title, relating to classification and General Schedule pay rates;
(vi) to the extent and in such amounts as may be provided in advance by appropriations Acts, made available from the revolving fund established under subsection (c)(3)(B), or as otherwise provided by law, enter into contracts and other arrangements with public agencies and private persons to carry out the functions and duties of the Council;
(vii) establish, in consultation with the members of the Council, such committees as determined by the Chairperson to be necessary and appropriate for the efficient conduct of Council functions; and
(viii)
prepare and transmit an annual report on behalf of the Council on the activities of the Council to—
(I) the President;(II) the appropriate committees of jurisdiction of the Senate and the House of Representatives;(III) the Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs of the Senate; and(IV) the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform of the House of Representatives.
(c)
Functions and Duties of Council.—
(1)
In general.—
The Council shall—
(A) continually identify, review, and discuss areas of weakness and vulnerability in Federal programs and operations with respect to fraud, waste, and abuse;
(B) develop plans for coordinated, Governmentwide activities that address these problems and promote economy and efficiency in Federal programs and operations, including interagency and interentity audit, investigation, inspection, and evaluation programs and projects to deal efficiently and effectively with those problems concerning fraud and waste that exceed the capability or jurisdiction of an individual agency or entity;
(C) develop policies that will aid in the maintenance of a corps of well-trained and highly skilled Office of Inspector General personnel;
(D) maintain an Internet website and other electronic systems for the benefit of all Inspectors General, as the Council determines are necessary or desirable;
(E) maintain 1 or more academies as the Council considers desirable for the professional training of auditors, investigators, inspectors, evaluators, and other personnel of the various offices of Inspector General;
(F) submit recommendations of individuals to the appropriate appointing authority for any appointment to an office of Inspector General described under subsection (b)(1)(A) or (B);
(G) make such reports to Congress as the Chairperson determines are necessary or appropriate;
(H) except for matters coordinated among Inspectors General under section 3033 of title 50, United States Code,1
1 See References in Text note below.
receive, review, and mediate any disputes submitted in writing to the Council by an Office of Inspector General regarding an audit, investigation, inspection, evaluation, or project that involves the jurisdiction of more than one Office of Inspector General; and
(I) perform other duties within the authority and jurisdiction of the Council, as appropriate.
(2)
Adherence and participation by members.—
To the extent permitted under law, and to the extent not inconsistent with standards established by the Comptroller General of the United States for audits of Federal establishments, organizations, programs, activities, and functions, each member of the Council, as appropriate, shall—
(A) adhere to professional standards developed by the Council; and
(B) participate in the plans, programs, and projects of the Council, except that in the case of a member described under subsection (b)(1)(I), the member shall participate only to the extent requested by the member and approved by the Executive Chairperson and Chairperson.
(3)
Additional administrative authorities.—
(A)
Interagency funding.—
Notwithstanding section 1532 of title 31, United States Code, or any other provision of law prohibiting the interagency funding of activities described under subclause (I), (II), or (III) of clause (i), in the performance of the responsibilities, authorities, and duties of the Council—
(i)
the Executive Chairperson may authorize the use of interagency funding for—
(I) Governmentwide training of employees of the Offices of the Inspectors General;(II) the functions of the Integrity Committee of the Council; and(III) any other authorized purpose determined by the Council; and
(ii) upon the authorization of the Executive Chairperson, any Federal agency or designated Federal entity (as defined in section 8G(a)) which has a member on the Council shall fund or participate in the funding of such activities.
(B)
Revolving fund.—
(i)
In general.—
The Council may—
(I) establish in the Treasury of the United States a revolving fund to be called the Inspectors General Council Fund; or(II) enter into an arrangement with a department or agency to use an existing revolving fund.
(ii)
Amounts in revolving fund.—
(I)
In general.—
Amounts transferred to the Council under this subsection shall be deposited in the revolving fund described under clause (i)(I) or (II).(II)
Training.—
Any remaining unexpended balances appropriated for or otherwise available to the Inspectors General Criminal Investigator Academy and the Inspectors General Auditor Training Institute shall be transferred to the revolving fund described under clause (i)(I) or (II).
(iii)
Use of revolving fund.—
(I)
In general.—
Except as provided under subclause (II), amounts in the revolving fund described under clause (i)(I) or (II) may be used to carry out the functions and duties of the Council under this subsection.(II)
Training.—
Amounts transferred into the revolving fund described under clause (i)(I) or (II) may be used for the purpose of maintaining any training academy as determined by the Council.
(iv)
Availability of funds.—
Amounts in the revolving fund described under clause (i)(I) or (II) shall remain available to the Council without fiscal year limitation.
(C)
Superseding provisions.—
No provision of law enacted after the date of enactment of this subsection shall be construed to limit or supersede any authority under subparagraph (A) or (B), unless such provision makes specific reference to the authority in that paragraph.2
2 So in original. Probably should be “subparagraph.”
(4)
Existing authorities and responsibilities.—
The establishment and operation of the Council shall not affect—
(A) the role of the Department of Justice in law enforcement and litigation;
(B) the authority or responsibilities of any Government agency or entity; and
(C) the authority or responsibilities of individual members of the Council.
(5)
Additional responsibilities relating to whistleblower protection.—
The Council shall—
(A) facilitate the work of the Whistleblower Protection Coordinators designated under section 3(d)(C); 3
3 So in original. Probably should be “3(d)(1)(C);”.
and
(B) in consultation with the Office of Special Counsel and Whistleblower Protection Coordinators from the member offices of the Inspector General, develop best practices for coordination and communication in promoting the timely and appropriate handling and consideration of protected disclosures, allegations of reprisal, and general matters regarding the implementation and administration of whistleblower protection laws, in accordance with Federal law.
(d)
Integrity Committee.—
(1)
Establishment.—
The Council shall have an Integrity Committee, which shall receive, review, and refer for investigation allegations of wrongdoing that are made against Inspectors General and staff members of the various Offices of Inspector General described under paragraph (4)(C).
(2)
Membership.—
(A)
In general.—
The Integrity Committee shall consist of the following members:
(i) The official of the Federal Bureau of Investigation serving on the Council.
(ii) Four Inspectors General described in subparagraph (A) or (B) of subsection (b)(1) appointed by the Chairperson of the Council, representing both establishments and designated Federal entities (as that term is defined in section 8G(a)).
(iii) The Director of the Office of Government Ethics or the designee of the Director.
(B)
Chairperson.—
(i)
In general.—
The Integrity Committee shall elect one of the Inspectors General referred to in subparagraph (A)(ii) to act as Chairperson of the Integrity Committee.
(ii)
Term.—
The term of office of the Chairperson of the Integrity Committee shall be 2 years.
(3)
Legal advisor.—
The Chief of the Public Integrity Section of the Criminal Division of the Department of Justice, or his designee, shall serve as a legal advisor to the Integrity Committee.
(4)
Referral of allegations.—
(A)
Requirement.—
An Inspector General shall refer to the Integrity Committee any allegation of wrongdoing against a staff member of the office of that Inspector General, if—
(i) review of the substance of the allegation cannot be assigned to an agency of the executive branch with appropriate jurisdiction over the matter; and
(ii)
the Inspector General determines that—
(I) an objective internal investigation of the allegation is not feasible; or(II) an internal investigation of the allegation may appear not to be objective.
(B)
Definition.—
In this paragraph the term “staff member” means any employee of an Office of Inspector General who—
(i) reports directly to an Inspector General; or
(ii) is designated by an Inspector General under subparagraph (C).
(C)
Designation of staff members.—
Each Inspector General shall annually submit to the Chairperson of the Integrity Committee a designation of positions whose holders are staff members for purposes of subparagraph (B).
(5)
Review of allegations.—
(A)
In general.—
Not later than 7 days after the date on which the Integrity Committee receives an allegation of wrongdoing against an Inspector General or against a staff member of an Office of Inspector General described under paragraph (4)(C), the allegation of wrongdoing shall be reviewed and referred to the Department of Justice or the Office of Special Counsel for investigation, or to the Integrity Committee for review, as appropriate, by—
(i) a representative of the Department of Justice, as designated by the Attorney General;
(ii) a representative of the Office of Special Counsel, as designated by the Special Counsel; and
(iii) a representative of the Integrity Committee, as designated by the Chairperson of the Integrity Committee.
(B)
Referral to the chairperson.—
(i)
In general.—
Except as provided in clause (ii), not later than 30 days after the date on which an allegation of wrongdoing is referred to the Integrity Committee under subparagraph (A), the Integrity Committee shall determine whether to refer the allegation of wrongdoing to the Chairperson of the Integrity Committee to initiate an investigation.
(ii)
Extension.—
The 30-day period described in clause (i) may be extended for an additional period of 30 days if the Integrity Committee provides written notice to the congressional committees described in paragraph (8)(A)(iii) that includes a detailed, case-specific description of why the additional time is needed to evaluate the allegation of wrongdoing.
(6)
Authority to investigate allegations.—
(A)
Requirement.—
The Chairperson of the Integrity Committee shall cause a thorough and timely investigation of each allegation referred under paragraph (5)(B) to be conducted in accordance with this paragraph.
(B)
Resources.—
At the request of the Chairperson of the Integrity Committee, the head of each agency or entity represented on the Council—
(i) shall provide assistance necessary to the Integrity Committee; and
(ii) may detail employees from that agency or entity to the Integrity Committee, subject to the control and direction of the Chairperson, to conduct an investigation under this subsection.
(7)
Procedures for investigations.—
(A)
Standards applicable.—
Investigations initiated under this subsection shall be conducted in accordance with the most current Quality Standards for Investigations issued by the Council or by its predecessors (the President’s Council on Integrity and Efficiency and the Executive Council on Integrity and Efficiency).
(B)
Additional policies and procedures.—
(i)
Establishment.—
The Integrity Committee, in conjunction with the Chairperson of the Council, shall establish additional policies and procedures necessary to ensure fairness and consistency in—
(I) determining whether to initiate an investigation;(II) conducting investigations;(III) reporting the results of an investigation;(IV) providing the person who is the subject of an investigation with an opportunity to respond to any Integrity Committee report;(V) except as provided in clause (ii), ensuring, to the extent possible, that investigations are conducted by Offices of Inspector General of similar size;(VI) creating a process for rotation of Inspectors General assigned to investigate allegations through the Integrity Committee; and(VII) creating procedures to avoid conflicts of interest for Integrity Committee investigations.
(ii)
Exception.—
The requirement under clause (i)(V) shall not apply to any Office of Inspector General with less than 50 employees who are authorized to conduct audits or investigations.
(iii)
Submission to congress.—
The Council shall submit a copy of the policies and procedures established under clause (i) to the congressional committees of jurisdiction.
(C)
Completion of investigation.—
If an allegation of wrongdoing is referred to the Chairperson of the Integrity Committee under paragraph (5)(B), the Chairperson of the Integrity Committee—
(i) shall complete the investigation not later than 150 days after the date on which the Integrity Committee made the referral; and
(ii)
if the investigation cannot be completed within the 150-day period described in clause (i), shall—
(I) promptly notify the congressional committees described in paragraph (8)(A)(iii); and(II) brief the congressional committees described in paragraph (8)(A)(iii) every 30 days regarding the status of the investigation and the general reasons for delay until the investigation is complete.
(D)
Concurrent investigation.—
If an allegation of wrongdoing against an Inspector General or a staff member of an Office of Inspector General described under paragraph (4)(C) is referred to the Department of Justice or the Office of Special Counsel under paragraph (5)(A), the Chairperson of the Integrity Committee may conduct any related investigation referred to the Chairperson under paragraph (5)(B) concurrently with the Department of Justice or the Office of Special Counsel, as applicable.
(E)
Reports.—
(i)
Integrity committee investigations.—
For each investigation of an allegation of wrongdoing referred to the Chairperson of the Integrity Committee under paragraph (5)(B), the Chairperson of the Integrity Committee shall submit to members of the Integrity Committee and to the Chairperson of the Council a report containing the results of the investigation.
(ii)
Other investigations.—
For each allegation of wrongdoing referred to the Department of Justice or the Office of Special Counsel under paragraph (5)(A), the Attorney General or the Special Counsel, as applicable, shall submit to the Integrity Committee a report containing the results of the investigation.
(iii)
Availability to congress.—
(I)
In general.—
The congressional committees described in paragraph (8)(A)(iii) shall have access to any report authored by the Integrity Committee.
(II)
Members of congress.—
Subject to any other provision of law that would otherwise prohibit disclosure of such information, the Integrity Committee may provide any report authored by the Integrity Committee to any Member of Congress.
(8)
Assessment and final disposition.—
(A)
In general.—
With respect to any report received under paragraph (7)(E), the Integrity Committee shall—
(i) assess the report;
(ii) forward the report, with the recommendations of the Integrity Committee, including those on disciplinary action, within 30 days (to the maximum extent practicable) after the completion of the investigation, to the Executive Chairperson of the Council and to the President (in the case of a report relating to an Inspector General of an establishment or any employee of that Inspector General) or the head of a designated Federal entity (in the case of a report relating to an Inspector General of such an entity or any employee of that Inspector General) for resolution; and 4
4 So in original. The word “and” probably should not appear.
(iii) submit the report, with the recommendations of the Integrity Committee, to the Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs of the Senate, the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform of the House of Representatives, and other congressional committees of jurisdiction; and
(iv) following the submission of the report under clause (iii) and upon request by any Member of Congress, submit the report, with the recommendations of the Integrity Committee, to that Member.
(B)
Disposition.—
The Executive Chairperson of the Council shall report to the Integrity Committee the final disposition of the matter, including what action was taken by the President or agency head.
(9)
Annual report.—
The Council shall submit to Congress and the President by December 31 of each year a report on the activities of the Integrity Committee during the preceding fiscal year, which shall include the following:
(A) The number of allegations received.
(B) The number of allegations referred to the Department of Justice or the Office of Special Counsel, including the number of allegations referred for criminal investigation.
(C) The number of allegations referred to the Chairperson of the Integrity Committee for investigation.
(D) The number of allegations closed without referral.
(E) The date each allegation was received and the date each allegation was finally disposed of.
(F) In the case of allegations referred to the Chairperson of the Integrity Committee, a summary of the status of the investigation of the allegations and, in the case of investigations completed during the preceding fiscal year, a summary of the findings of the investigations.
(G) Other matters that the Council considers appropriate.
(10)
Requests for more information.—
With respect to paragraphs (8) and (9), the Council shall provide more detailed information about specific allegations upon request from any Member of Congress.
(11)
No right or benefit.—
This subsection is not intended to create any right or benefit, substantive or procedural, enforceable at law by a person against the United States, its agencies, its officers, or any person.
(12)
Allegations of wrongdoing against special counsel or deputy special counsel.—
(A)
Special counsel defined.—
In this paragraph, the term “Special Counsel” means the Special Counsel appointed under section 1211(b) of title 5, United States Code.
(B)
Authority of integrity committee.—
(i)
In general.—
An allegation of wrongdoing against the Special Counsel or the Deputy Special Counsel may be received, reviewed, and referred for investigation to the same extent and in the same manner as in the case of an allegation against an Inspector General or against a staff member of an Office of Inspector General described under paragraph (4)(C), subject to the requirement that the representative designated by the Special Counsel under paragraph (5)(A)(ii) shall recuse himself or herself from the consideration of any allegation brought under this paragraph.
(ii)
Coordination with existing provisions of law.—
This paragraph shall not eliminate access to the Merit Systems Protection Board for review under section 7701 of title 5, United States Code. To the extent that an allegation brought under this paragraph involves section 2302(b)(8) of such title, a failure to obtain corrective action within 120 days after the date on which the allegation is received by the Integrity Committee shall, for purposes of section 1221 of such title, be considered to satisfy section 1214(a)(3)(B) of such title.
(C)
Regulations.—
The Integrity Committee may prescribe any rules or regulations necessary to carry out this paragraph, subject to such consultation or other requirements as may otherwise apply.
(13)
Committee records.—
The Chairperson of the Council shall maintain the records of the Integrity Committee.
(e)
Oversight.gov.—
(1)
Definition.—
In this subsection, the term “Office of Inspector General” means the Office of—
(A) an Inspector General described in subparagraph (A), (B), or (I) of subsection (b)(1);
(B) the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction established under section 1229 of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2008 (Public Law 110–181; 122 Stat. 379);
(C) the Special Inspector General for the Troubled Asset Relief Plan established under section 121 of title I of the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008 (12 U.S.C. 5231); and
(D) the Special Inspector General for Pandemic Recovery established under section 4018 of the CARES Act (15 U.S.C. 9053).
(2)
Establishment.—
The Council shall establish and maintain a website entitled “oversight.gov”—
(A) to consolidate all public reports from each Office of Inspector General to improve the access of the public to any audit report, inspection report, or evaluation report (or portion of any such report) made by an Office of Inspector General; and
(B) that shall include any additional resources, information, and enhancements as the Council determines are necessary or desirable.
(3)
Participation of offices of inspectors general.—
Each Office of Inspector General that publishes an audit report, inspection report, or evaluation report (or portion of any such report) on the website of the Office of Inspector General shall, or in the case of the office of an Inspector General described in subparagraph (I) of subsection (b)(1) may, contemporaneously publish the report or portion thereof on oversight.gov in a manner prescribed by the Council.
(Pub. L. 95–452, § 11, as added Pub. L. 110–409, § 7(a), Oct. 14, 2008, 122 Stat. 4305; amended Pub. L. 113–235, div. H, title I, § 1301(b), Dec. 16, 2014, 128 Stat. 2537; Pub. L. 114–113, div. M, title III, § 304, Dec. 18, 2015, 129 Stat. 2913; Pub. L. 114–317, §§ 3, 7(b)(1)(B), (d)(2)(G), Dec. 16, 2016, 130 Stat. 1596, 1605, 1606; Pub. L. 115–192, § 2(b), June 25, 2018, 132 Stat. 1503; Pub. L. 116–260, div. U, title V, § 501(a), Dec. 27, 2020, 134 Stat. 2293.)