President Trump signs executive order on reorganizing the executive branch

Considerations regarding the reorganization of the financial regulatory agencies

Introduction

On March 13, 2017, President Trump issued an executive order1 intended to “improve the efficiency, effectiveness, and accountability” of the executive branch by directing Mick Mulvaney, Director of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), to propose a plan to “reorganize governmental functions and eliminate unnecessary agencies, components of agencies, and agency programs.”

Specifically, the order directs the head of each agency to submit to the OMB, within six months of the order, a plan to reorganize the agency, if appropriate.  In addition, it directs the OMB to seek public comment on a proposed plan and, within six months after the end of the comment deadline, submit the plan to President Trump for review.

Notably, the order uses the definition of “agency” under 5 U.S.C. 551 (i.e., the definition under the Administrative Procedure Act), which covers independent agencies, including the Federal Reserve Board (FRB), Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC), Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC), Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC), and Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB).  Accordingly, it appears that these agencies will be subject to the order.

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