President Donald Trump issued an executive order Monday to reorganize and streamline the executive branch of government, which includes such federal agencies as the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Cabinet — including the departments of Labor and Justice — as well as the Social Security Administration.
Trump’s Comprehensive Plan for Reorganizing the Executive Branch directs the Office of Management and Budget to propose a plan to “reorganize governmental functions and eliminate unnecessary agencies.”
The plan requires that heads of federal agencies must submit, within 180 days of the order, to OMB a proposed plan to “reorganize the agency, if appropriate, in order to improve the efficiency, effectiveness and accountability of that agency.”
The head of OMB is also directed to seek public comment on such federal agency revisions, and develop a plan to be presented to the president that includes weighing whether:
- Some or all of the functions of an agency, a component or a program are appropriate for the federal government or would be better left to state or local governments or to the private sector through free enterprise;
- Some or all of the functions of an agency, a component or a program are redundant, including with those of another agency, component or program;
- Certain administrative capabilities are redundant with those of another agency, component, or program;
- The costs of continuing to operate an agency, a component or a program are justified by the public benefits it provides; and
- The costs of shutting down or merging agencies, components or programs, including the costs of addressing the equities of affected agency staff.
The head of OMB is also called upon to consult with the head of each agency in developing the proposed plan.
Former Rep. Barney Frank of Massachusetts, who co-wrote the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, floated a bill before he retired in 2012 to merge the SEC and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission.