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United States federal executive departments

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The United States federal executive departments are the principal units of the executive branch of the federal government of the United States. They are analogous to ministries common in parliamentary or semi-presidential systems but (the United States being a presidential system) they are led by a head of government who is also the head of state. The executive departments are the administrative arms of the president of the United States. There are currently 15 executive departments.

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Transcription

Overview

Structure

Each department is headed by a secretary whose title echoes the title of their respective department, with the exception of the Department of Justice, whose head is known as the attorney general. The heads of the executive departments are appointed by the president and take office after confirmation by the United States Senate, and serve at the pleasure of the president. The heads of departments are members of the Cabinet of the United States, an executive organ that normally acts as an advisory body to the president. In the Opinion Clause (Article II, section 2, clause 1) of the U.S. Constitution, heads of executive departments are referred to as "principal Officer in each of the executive Departments".

The heads of executive departments are included in the line of succession to the president, in the event of a vacancy in the presidency, after the vice president, the speaker of the House, and the president pro tempore of the Senate. They are included in order of their respective department's formation, with the exception of the Secretary of Defense, whose position in the line of succession is based on when the Department of War was formed.

Separation of powers

To enforce a strong separation of powers, the federal Constitution's Ineligibility Clause expressly prohibits executive branch employees (including heads of executive departments) from simultaneously serving in Congress, and vice versa. Accordingly, in sharp contrast to virtually all other Western democracies (parliamentary systems) where ministers are selected to form a government from members of parliament,[1] U.S. legislators who are appointed by the president and confirmed by the Senate to serve as heads of executive departments must resign from Congress before assuming their new positions.[2] If the emoluments for a new appointee's executive branch position were increased while the appointee was previously serving in Congress (e.g., cost of living adjustments), the president must implement a Saxbe fix.[3]

Contracting and grantmaking roles

As is evident from the chart below, several executive departments (Education, Health and Human Services, Housing and Urban Development, and Transportation) have disproportionately small employee headcounts in contrast to the size of their budgets. This is because many of their employees merely supervise contracts with private independent contractors or grants (especially categorical grants) to state or local government agencies who are primarily responsible for providing services directly to the general public. In the 20th century, when the federal government began to provide funding and supervision for matters which were historically seen as the domain of state governments (i.e., education, health and welfare services, housing, and transportation), Congress frequently authorized only funding for grants which were voluntary in the sense that state or local government agencies could choose to apply for such grants (and accept conditions attached by Congress), or they could decline to apply.[4] In the case of HHS's Medicare program, Congress chose to contract with private health insurers because they "already possessed the requisite expertise for administering complex health insurance programs", and because American hospitals preferred to continue dealing with private insurers instead of a new federal bureaucracy.[5]

Current departments

Department Seal Flag Formed Employees Total budget Head
Title Titleholder
State
July 27, 1789 30,000
(2023)
$58.1 billion[6]
(2023)
Secretary of State Antony Blinken
Treasury
September 2, 1789 100,000
(2023)
$16.4 billion[7]
(2023)
Secretary of the Treasury Janet Yellen
Interior
March 3, 1849 70,000
(2023)
$35 billion[8]
(2023)
Secretary of the Interior Deb Haaland
Agriculture
May 15, 1862 100,000
(2023)
$242 billion[9]
(2023)
Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack
Justice
July 1, 1870 113,543
(2012)
$37.5 billion[10]
(2023)
Attorney General Merrick Garland
Commerce
February 14, 1903 41,000
(2023)
$16.3 billion[11]
(2023)
Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo
Labor
March 4, 1913 15,000
(2023)
$97.5 billion[12]
(2023)
Secretary of Labor Julie Su
Defense
September 18, 1947 3,200,000
(2023)
$852 billion[13]
(2023)
Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin
Health and Human Services
April 11, 1953 65,000
(2023)
$1.772 trillion[14]
(2023)
Secretary of Health and Human Services Xavier Becerra
Housing and Urban Development
September 9, 1965 9,000
(2023)
$61.7 billion[15]
(2023)
Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Marcia Fudge
Transportation
April 1, 1967 55,000
(2023)
$145 billion[16]
(2023)
Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg
Energy
August 4, 1977 10,000
(2023)
$45.8 billion[17]
(2023)
Secretary of Energy Jennifer Granholm
Education
October 17, 1979 4,200
(2023)
$79.6 billion[18]
(2023)
Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona
Veterans Affairs
March 15, 1989 235,000
(2023)
$308.5 billion[19]
(2023)
Secretary of Veterans Affairs Denis McDonough
Homeland Security
November 25, 2002 250,000
(2023)
$101.6 billion[20]
(2023)
Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas

Former departments

Department Formed Removed from Cabinet Superseded by Last Cabinet-level head
Title Titleholder
War August 7, 1789 September 18, 1947 Department of the Army
Department of the Air Force
Secretary of War Kenneth Claiborne Royall
Army September 18, 1947 August 10, 1949 Department of Defense
(as executive department)
became and still are military departments within the Department of Defense
Secretary of the Army Gordon Gray
Air Force Secretary of the Air Force Stuart Symington
Navy April 30, 1798 August 10, 1949 Department of Defense
(as executive department)
became and still is a military department within the Department of Defense
Secretary of the Navy Francis P. Matthews
Post Office February 20, 1792 July 1, 1971 United States Postal Service Postmaster General Winton M. Blount
Commerce and Labor February 14, 1903 March 4, 1913 Department of Commerce
Department of Labor
(The Department of Commerce is considered a continuation of the Department of Commerce and Labor under a new name.)
Secretary of Commerce and Labor Charles Nagel
Health, Education, and Welfare April 11, 1953 October 17, 1979 Department of Education
Department of Health and Human Services
(The Department of Health and Human Services is considered a continuation of the Department of Health, Education, and Welfare under a new name.)
Secretary of Health, Education, and Welfare Patricia Roberts Harris

Proposed departments

See also

References

Citations

  1. ^ Wexler, Jay (2011). The Odd Clauses: Understanding the Constitution Through Ten of Its Most Curious Provisions. Boston: Beacon Press. p. 17. ISBN 9780807000892. Retrieved December 24, 2022.
  2. ^ Wexler, Jay (2011). The Odd Clauses: Understanding the Constitution Through Ten of Its Most Curious Provisions. Boston: Beacon Press. p. 11. ISBN 9780807000892. Retrieved December 24, 2022.
  3. ^ Wexler, Jay (2011). The Odd Clauses: Understanding the Constitution Through Ten of Its Most Curious Provisions. Boston: Beacon Press. p. 13. ISBN 9780807000892. Retrieved December 24, 2022.
  4. ^ Federal Grants to State and Local Governments: A Historical Perspective on Contemporary Issues (PDF). Washington: Congressional Research Service. May 22, 2019. pp. 15–26. Retrieved December 24, 2022. CRS Report No. R40638. Version 27.
  5. ^ Kinney, Eleanor D. (2015). The Affordable Care Act and Medicare in Comparative Context. New York: Cambridge University Press. p. 25. ISBN 9781316352618. Retrieved December 24, 2022.
  6. ^ "Congressional Budget Justification - Department of State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs. FISCAL YEAR 2024" (PDF).
  7. ^ "FY2024 Budget in Brief" (PDF). United States Treasury.
  8. ^ "Fiscal Year 2024 The Interior Budget in Brief" (PDF).
  9. ^ "United States Department of Agriculture - FY2024 Budget Summary" (PDF).
  10. ^ "U.S. DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE FY 2024 BUDGET SUMMARY" (PDF).
  11. ^ "Departmental Overview - Department of Commerce" (PDF).
  12. ^ "FY 2024 - DEPARTMENT OF LABOR - BUDGET IN BRIEF" (PDF).
  13. ^ "Defense Budget Overview - FISCAL YEAR 2024 BUDGET REQUEST" (PDF).
  14. ^ "U.S. Department of Health & Human Services - Fiscal Year 2024 Budget in Brief" (PDF).
  15. ^ "DEPARTMENT OF HOUSING AND URBAN DEVELOPMENT - 2024 CONGRESSIONAL JUSTIFICATIONS" (PDF).
  16. ^ "Budget Highlights 2024 - Secretary of Transportation" (PDF).
  17. ^ "Department of Energy - FY 2024" (PDF).
  18. ^ "U.S. DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION - Fiscal year 2024" (PDF).
  19. ^ "U.S. DEPARTMENT OF VETERANS AFFAIRS" (PDF).
  20. ^ "FY 2024 - Homeland Security - Budget in Brief" (PDF).
  21. ^ "A Department of Commerce". The New York Times. 1881-05-13.
  22. ^ Improving Management and Organization in Federal Natural Resources and Environmental Functions: Hearing Before the Committee on Governmental Affairs, U. S. Senate. Diane Publishing. April 1, 1998. ISBN 9780788148743. Archived from the original on January 14, 2019. Retrieved February 20, 2017 – via Google Books. Chairman Stevens. Thank you very much. I think both of you are really pointing in the same direction as this Committee. I do hope we can keep it on a bipartisan basis. Mr. Dean, when I was at the Interior Department, I drafted Eisenhower's Department of Natural Resources proposal, and we have had a series of them that have been presented.
  23. ^ a b c "116 - Special Message to the Congress on Executive Branch Reorganization". The University of California, Santa Barbara - The American Presidency Project. Archived from the original on February 14, 2017. Retrieved February 13, 2017. The administration is today transmitting to the Congress four bills which, if enacted, would replace seven of the present executive departments and several other agencies with four new departments: the Department of Natural Resources, the Department of Community Development, the Department of Human Resources and the Department of Economic Affairs.
  24. ^ "Republican Party Platform of 1976". The University of California, Santa Barbara - The American Presidency Project. August 18, 1976. Archived from the original on April 2, 2015. Retrieved March 13, 2015.
  25. ^ Thrush, Glenn (November 8, 2013). "Locked in the Cabinet". Politico. Archived from the original on November 17, 2013. Retrieved November 18, 2013.
  26. ^ Schuman, Frederick L. (1969). Why a Department of Peace. Beverly Hills: Another Mother for Peace. p. 56. OCLC 339785.
  27. ^ "History of Legislation to Create a Dept. of Peace". Archived from the original on 2006-07-20.
  28. ^ a b c "10 - Summary of the Report of the Committee on Administrative Management". The University of California, Santa Barbara - The American Presidency Project. Archived from the original on February 13, 2017. Retrieved February 13, 2017. Overhaul the more than 100 separate departments, boards, commissions, administrations, authorities, corporations, committees, agencies and activities which are now parts of the Executive Branch, and theoretically under the President, and consolidate them within twelve regular departments, which would include the existing ten departments and two new departments, a Department of Social Welfare, and a Department of Public Works. Change the name of the Department of Interior to Department of Conservation.
  29. ^ "23 - Special Message to the Congress Transmitting Reorganization Plan 1 of 1962". The University of California, Santa Barbara - The American Presidency Project. Archived from the original on February 14, 2017. Retrieved February 13, 2017.
  30. ^ "121 - Special Message to the Congress: The Quality of American Government". The University of California, Santa Barbara - The American Presidency Project. Archived from the original on February 14, 2017. Retrieved February 13, 2017. In my State of the Union Address, and later in my Budget and Economic Messages to the Congress, I proposed the creation of a new Department of Business and Labor.
  31. ^ "33 - Special Message to the Congress on Rural Development". The University of California, Santa Barbara - The American Presidency Project. Archived from the original on February 14, 2017. Retrieved February 13, 2017.
  32. ^ "116 - Special Message to the Congress on Executive Branch Reorganization". The University of California, Santa Barbara - The American Presidency Project. Archived from the original on February 14, 2017. Retrieved February 13, 2017. The new Department of Economic Affairs would include many of the offices that are now within the Departments of Commerce, Labor and Agriculture. A large part of the Department of Transportation would also be relocated here, including the United States Coast Guard, the Federal Railroad Administration, the St. Lawrence Seaway Development Corporation, the National Transportation Safety Board, the Transportation Systems Center, the Federal Aviation Administration, the Motor Carrier Safety Bureau and most of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. The Small Business Administration, the Science Information Exchange program from the Smithsonian Institution, the National Institute for Occupational Health and Safety from the Department of Health, Education, and Welfare and the Office of Technology Utilization from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration would also be included in the new Department.
  33. ^ "Public Notes on 02-RMSP3". Archived from the original on June 13, 2017. Retrieved February 20, 2017.
  34. ^ "A Conversation with Michael McConnell". Council on Foreign Relations (Federal News Service, rush transcript). June 29, 2007. Archived from the original on January 17, 2013. Retrieved January 9, 2013.
  35. ^ "Time for a Cabinet-Level U.S. Department of Global Development". The Center for Global Development. Archived from the original on January 14, 2019. Retrieved February 15, 2017.
  36. ^ Clarke, John Jr. (January 16, 2009). "Quincy Jones Lobbies Obama for Secretary of Culture Post". Rolling Stone. Archived from the original on September 8, 2012. Retrieved August 19, 2010.
  37. ^ "President Obama Announces proposal to reform, reorganize and consolidate Government". whitehouse.gov. Archived from the original on February 11, 2017. Retrieved February 8, 2017 – via National Archives.
  38. ^ "Obama Suggests 'Secretary of Business' in a 2nd Term - Washington Wire - WSJ". The Wall Street Journal. Archived from the original on March 1, 2017. Retrieved August 4, 2017.
  39. ^ "Burr Cuts Wasteful Spending, Improves Efficiency by Combining Dept. of Labor and Commerce | U.S. Senator Richard Burr of North Carolina". www.burr.senate.gov. 17 December 2013. Archived from the original on 2019-07-12. Retrieved 2019-07-12.
  40. ^ "S.1116: Actions & Votes". Retrieved November 10, 2011.
  41. ^ "White House Proposes Merging Education And Labor Departments". NPR.org. Archived from the original on June 21, 2018. Retrieved June 22, 2018.
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  43. ^ Warren, Team (2019-06-04). "A Plan For Economic Patriotism". Medium. Archived from the original on July 31, 2019. Retrieved 2019-07-30.
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  45. ^ "U.S. Department of Children and Youth "The Whole Child Plan"". Marianne Williamson for President. Retrieved 2020-12-01.
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Sources

External links

This page was last edited on 19 June 2024, at 02:54
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