Trump Administration Seeking To Reorganize Government Agencies Without Congressional Approval

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A July report from Government Executive analyzing 32 government reorganization proposals unveiled in June was made public by the Federation of American Scientists this week. In an analysis completed by the Congressional Research Service, it was estimated that the Trump administration could act unilaterally on 10-12 of the potential changes, according to Government Executive.

The Trump administration has suggested that it can move forward with many of the proposals on its own without Congressional approval, but has yet to identify which agencies will be unilaterally reorganized as it continues to review which items will require Congressional approval and which ones will not.

According to the Congressional Research Service, the Trump administration can make the following changes without legislative action:

  • Reorganize the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) and State Department humanitarian assistance agencies into one. Humanitarian assistance is currently provided by three different government offices within the two agencies, resulting in communication gaps and duplication. This would be in addition to another proposed massive reorganization of all USAID offices and bureaus.
  • Consolidate the U.S. government’s existing development finance tools into a single department called the Development Finance Institution. This would combine offices like OPIC and DCA into a single entity. This effort required legislation, but has already been passed into law as it was tucked into the FAA reorganization.

Other reorganization plans, such as merging the Education and Labor Department, merging food safety programs, and privatizing the US Postal Service would require Congressional legislation.