[Federal Register Volume 73, Number 115 (Friday, June 13, 2008)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 33661-33662]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: E8-13170]



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Rules and Regulations
                                                Federal Register
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Federal Register / Vol. 73, No. 115 / Friday, June 13, 2008 / Rules 
and Regulations

[[Page 33661]]



COMMISSION ON CIVIL RIGHTS

5 CFR Chapter LXVIII

RINs 3035-AA05, 3209-AA15


Supplemental Standards of Ethical Conduct for Employees of the 
United States Commission on Civil Rights

AGENCY: U.S. Commission on Civil Rights.

ACTION: Final rule.

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SUMMARY: The United States Commission on Civil Rights (Commission), 
with the concurrence of the Office of Government Ethics (OGE), is 
issuing this rule for employees of the Commission, which supplements 
the Standards of Ethical Conduct for Employees of the Executive Branch 
issued by OGE. The rule requires employees of the Commission to obtain 
prior approval before engaging in outside employment. The text of the 
rule was published in the Federal Register on August 30, 2006 at 71 FR 
51533 as a proposed rule and provided that comments should have been 
received by September 29, 2006 to be considered in the formulation of 
the final rule. No comments were received.

DATES: This rule is effective July 14, 2008.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Emma Monroig, Esq., Solicitor and 
Designated Agency Ethics Official, United States Commission on Civil 
Rights, Office of the Staff Director, 624 Ninth Street, NW., Suite 621, 
Washington, DC 20425; Telephone: (202) 376-7796; Facsimile: (202) 376-
1163.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: In 1979, the United States Commission on 
Civil Rights adopted a set of Employee Responsibilities and Conduct 
rules as set forth in 45 CFR part 706. See 44 FR 75152, as revised in 
2002 at 67 FR 70498. That rule in the pertinent part required employees 
to obtain approval, in writing, from their supervisors before engaging 
in outside employment. 45 CFR 706.7.
    On August 7, 1992, OGE published new executive branch Standards of 
Ethical Conduct regulations, which became generally effective on 
February 3, 1993. The Standards, as corrected and amended, are codified 
at 5 CFR part 2635. These regulations, together with OGE's executive 
branchwide financial disclosure and financial interests regulations 
codified at 5 CFR parts 2634 and 2640, superseded the Commission's old 
Employee Responsibilities and Conduct regulations at 45 CFR part 706, 
including the provision requiring employees to obtain prior approval 
before engaging in outside employment. In a separate rulemaking also 
being published in the Federal Register today, the Commission is 
removing its old superseded conduct regulation and replacing it with a 
residual crossreferences provision.
    The Commission, however, has determined, with OGE concurrence, that 
it is necessary and desirable for the purpose of administering its 
ethics program to require its employees to again obtain written 
approval before engaging in outside employment, except for certain 
volunteer community service activities the DAEO has designated as 
``generally approved.'' Section 7801.102 of new chapter LXVIII of 5 CFR 
will now require prior approval for outside activities in order to 
ensure that the activity would not otherwise violate a Federal statute 
or regulation, including the branchwide Standards. The section includes 
a definition, at paragraph (d), of outside employment, to mean any form 
of non-Federal employment, business relationship or activity involving 
the provision of personal services by the employee, whether or not for 
compensation. It also provides, at paragraph (c), that upon a 
significant change in the nature or scope of the outside employment or 
the employee's official position, the employee is required to submit a 
revised request for approval. The rule does not include special 
Government employees in the prior approval provision, since they 
consist primarily of State Advisory Committee members who serve on the 
Commission as uncompensated employees. Accordingly, by this rulemaking, 
the Commission is reinstituting the prior approval requirement, albeit 
in a modified form in light of the promulgation of the branchwide 
Standards. Furthermore, in Sec.  7801.101 of 5 CFR, the Commission 
states the purpose of the supplemental regulation and includes cross-
references to other Government ethics regulations applicable to 
Commission employees in addition to the new part. The cross-referenced 
regulations are the executive branch Standards, as well as the OGE 
executive branch financial disclosure and financial interests 
regulations noted above, and the separate specific executive branchwide 
employee responsibilities and conduct regulations of the Office of 
Personnel Management codified at 5 CFR part 735. Moreover, the section 
identifies the Solicitor as the Designated Agency Ethics Official and 
requires that employees seeking approval for outside employment obtain 
the approval of the Designated Agency Ethics Official, except to the 
extent that volunteer professional activities designated ``generally 
approved'' do not require additional prior written approval. In this 
final rule, the Commission is adding two references in paragraph (a) of 
7801.101 to clarify that all of the other regulations referenced are 
executive branchwide regulations. The Commission is also adding the 
word ``outside'' to the word ``employment'' in definitional paragraph 
(d) of Sec.  7801.102 to clarify the term being defined. Finally, the 
Commission is adding a new paragraph (e) to Sec.  7801.102 on volunteer 
community service activities of its professional and non-professional 
staff to reflect its new Administrative Instruction, with a cross-
reference thereto in paragraph (a). Paragraph (e) addresses the types 
of clearances needed for both volunteer (pro bono) community service 
activities that are designated as ``generally approved,'' or pre-
approved by the DAEO, and those that are not so designated. Otherwise, 
the Commission, with OGE concurrence, is adopting its proposed 
supplemental standards regulation as final without change.

Matters of Regulatory Procedure

Executive Orders 12866 and 12988

    Because this rule relates to Commission personnel, it is exempt 
from the provisions of Executive Orders 12866 and 12988.

[[Page 33662]]

Regulatory Flexibility Act

    It has been determined under the Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 
U.S.C. chapter 6) that this rule does not have a significant economic 
impact on a substantial number of small entities because it primarily 
affects Commission employees.

Paperwork Reduction Act

    It has been determined that the Paperwork Reduction Act (44 U.S.C. 
chapter 35) does not apply to this rulemaking document because it does 
not contain any information collection requirements that require the 
approval of the Office of Management and Budget.

Congressional Review Act

    The Commission has determined that this rulemaking is not a rule as 
defined in 5 U.S.C. 804, and, thus, does not require review by 
Congress.

List of Subjects in 5 CFR Part 7801

    Conflict of interests, Government employees.

    Dated: March 28, 2008.
Emma Monroig,
Solicitor and Designated Agency Ethics Official, United States 
Commission on Civil Rights.
    Dated: March 28, 2008.
Robert Lerner,
Assistant Staff Director for Civil Rights Enforcement, Delegated Duties 
of the Staff Director, United States Commission on Civil Rights.
    Approved: April 2, 2008.
Robert I. Cusick,
Director, Office of Government Ethics.

0
For the reasons set forth in this preamble, the United States 
Commission on Civil Rights, with the concurrence of the Office of 
Government Ethics, is amending title 5 of the Code of Federal 
Regulations by adding a new chapter LXVIII, consisting of part 7801, to 
read as follows:

CHAPTER LXVIII--COMMISSION ON CIVIL RIGHTS

PART 7801--SUPPLEMENTAL STANDARDS OF ETHICAL CONDUCT FOR EMPLOYEES 
OF THE UNITED STATES COMMISSION ON CIVIL RIGHTS

Sec.
7801.101 General.
7801 .102 Prior approval for outside employment

    Authority: 5 U.S.C. 7301; 5 U.S.C. App. (Ethics in Government 
Act of 1978); 42 U.S.C. 1975b(d); E.O. 12674, 54 FR 15159, 3 CFR, 
1989 Comp., p. 215, as modified by E.O. 12731, 55 FR 42547, 3 CFR, 
1990 Comp., p. 306; 5 CFR 2635.105, 2635.803.


Sec.  7801.101  General.

    (a) Purpose. In accordance with 5 CFR 2635.105, the regulations in 
this part apply to employees of the United States Commission on Civil 
Rights (Commission) and supplement the Standards of Ethical Conduct for 
Employees of the Executive Branch contained at 5 CFR part 2635. 
Employees of the Commission are required to comply with this part, 5 
CFR part 2635, the executive branchwide financial disclosure and 
financial interests regulations at 5 CFR parts 2634 and 2640, and 
implementing guidance and procedures. Commission employees are also 
subject to the executive branch regulations on responsibilities and 
conduct at 5 CFR part 735.
    (b) Definition. The Designated Agency Ethics Official (DAEO) is the 
Solicitor for the Commission.


Sec.  7801.102  Prior approval for outside employment.

    (a) An employee, other than a special Government employee, of the 
Commission who wishes to engage in outside employment shall first 
obtain the approval, in writing, of the Designated Agency Ethics 
Official (DAEO). Volunteer professional services, however, may be 
``generally approved'' in advance as described in paragraph (e) of this 
section.
    (b) Standard for approval. Approval shall be granted by the DAEO 
only upon a determination that the prospective outside employment is 
not expected to involve conduct prohibited by statute or Federal 
regulation, including 5 CFR part 2635.
    (c) Upon a significant change in the nature or scope of the outside 
employment or the employee's official position, the employee must 
submit a revised request for approval.
    (d) For purposes of this section, ``outside employment'' means any 
form of non-Federal employment, business relationship or activity 
involving the provision of personal services by the employee, whether 
or not for compensation. It includes, but is not limited to, personal 
services as an officer, director, employee, agent, attorney, 
consultant, contractor, general partner, trustee, teacher, or speaker. 
It includes writing done under an arrangement with another person for 
production or publication of the written product. It does not, however, 
include participation in the activities of a nonprofit charitable, 
religious, professional, social, fraternal, educational, recreational, 
public service, or civic organization, unless such activities involve 
the provision of professional services or advice or are for 
compensation other than reimbursement of expenses.
    (e)(1) The Commission may designate volunteer activities as 
``generally approved,'' or preapproved by the DAEO, in order to 
facilitate the participation of the Commission's professional and 
nonprofessional staff (whether involving legal or non-legal services). 
Non-representational pro bono legal services designated as ``generally 
approved'' require employees to notify the DAEO, the General Counsel 
(GC), and the employee's supervisor (if different from the GC) prior to 
the employee's participation; however, no additional prior approval is 
required. Representational pro bono legal services designated as 
``generally approved'' still require prior case-specific written 
approval by the DAEO pursuant to this section, and notification of the 
GC and the employee's supervisor (if different from the GC). Non-legal 
professional volunteer activities designated as ``generally approved'' 
require employees to notify their supervisor and the DAEO. However, no 
additional prior written approval is required.
    (2) To provide professional services or advice to a program or 
activity not designated as ``generally approved,'' the employee must 
notify his or her supervisor and submit a written request and 
justification in advance to the DAEO. In addition, in order to provide 
pro bono legal services the employee must notify the GC (if the GC is 
not the employee's supervisor). If providing representational pro bono 
legal services, the employee must also obtain written case-specific 
prior approval from the DAEO pursuant to this section. All requests for 
approval submitted to the DAEO must reflect that the required 
notifications were made by the employee. All DAEO approvals must be in 
writing.

[FR Doc. E8-13170 Filed 6-12-08; 8:45 am]
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