[Federal Register Volume 83, Number 212 (Thursday, November 1, 2018)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 54861-54862]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2018-23548]



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Rules and Regulations
                                                Federal Register
________________________________________________________________________

This section of the FEDERAL REGISTER contains regulatory documents 
having general applicability and legal effect, most of which are keyed 
to and codified in the Code of Federal Regulations, which is published 
under 50 titles pursuant to 44 U.S.C. 1510.

The Code of Federal Regulations is sold by the Superintendent of Documents. 

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Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 212 / Thursday, November 1, 2018 / 
Rules and Regulations

[[Page 54861]]



NATIONAL MEDIATION BOARD

5 CFR Chapter CI

[Docket No. C-7188]
RIN 3209-AA47


Supplemental Standards of Ethical Conduct for Employees of the 
National Mediation Board

AGENCY: National Mediation Board.

ACTION: Interim final rule with request for comments.

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SUMMARY: The National Mediation Board (NMB or Board), with the 
concurrence of the U.S. Office of Government Ethics (OGE), is issuing 
an interim final regulation for employees of the NMB that supplements 
the executive branch-wide Standards of Ethical Conduct (Standards) 
issued by OGE. The supplemental regulation requires NMB employees to 
obtain approval before engaging in outside employment.

DATES: This interim final rule is effective November 1, 2018. Comments 
must be received on or before December 31, 2018.

ADDRESSES: You may submit comments identified by Docket Number C-7188 
by any of the following methods:
     Federal eRulemaking Portal: http://www.regulations.gov. 
Follow the instructions for submitting comments.
     Agency Website: www.nmb.gov. Follow the instructions for 
submitting comments.
     Email: legal@nmb.gov. Include docket number in the subject 
line of the message.
     Fax: (202) 692-5085.
     Mail and Hand Delivery: National Mediation Board, 1301 K 
Street NW, Ste. 250E, Washington, DC 20005.
    Instructions: All submissions received must include the agency name 
and docket number. All comments received will be posted without change 
to www.nmb.gov, including any personal information provided.
    Docket: For access to the docket or to read background documents or 
comments received, go to www.nmb.gov.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Mary Johnson, General Counsel, 
National Mediation Board, 202-692-5050, infoline@nmb.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 

I. Background

    On August 7, 1992, OGE published the OGE Standards of Ethical 
Conduct for Employees of the Executive Branch (OGE Standards). See 57 
FR 35006-35067, as corrected at 57 FR 48557, 57 FR 52483, and 60 FR 
51167, with additional grace period extensions for certain existing 
provisions at 59 FR 4779-4780, 60 FR 6390-6391, and 60 FR 66857-66858. 
The OGE Standards, codified at 5 CFR part 2635, effective February 3, 
1993, established uniform standards of ethical conduct that apply to 
all executive branch personnel. Section 2635.105 of the OGE Standards 
authorizes an agency, with the concurrence of OGE, to adopt agency-
specific supplemental regulations that are necessary to properly 
implement its ethics program. The NMB, with OGE's concurrence, has 
determined that the following supplemental regulation is necessary to 
the successful implementation of its ethics program.

II. Analysis of the Interim Regulations

Section 10101.101 General

    Section 10101.101 explains that the supplemental regulations apply 
to all employees of the National Mediation Board and supplement the OGE 
Standards.

Section 10101.102 Prior Approval for Outside Employment

    The OGE Standards, at 5 CFR 2635.803, specifically recognize that 
individual agencies may find it necessary or desirable to supplement 
the executive branch-wide regulations with a requirement for their 
employees to obtain approval before engaging in outside employment or 
activities. In accordance with 5 CFR 2635.803, the NMB has determined 
that it is desirable for the purpose of administering its ethics 
program to require employees to obtain approval before engaging in 
outside employment, regardless of whether that employment is 
compensated or uncompensated. This approval requirement will help 
ensure that potential ethical problems are resolved before employees 
undertake outside employment that could involve a violation of 
applicable statutes or the OGE Standards. Section 10101.102(a) provides 
that NMB employees must obtain prior written approval before engaging 
in compensated or uncompensated outside employment.
    Section 10101.102(b) sets forth procedures for requesting such 
approval. Section 10101.102(b)(1) states that requests for approval of 
outside employment be submitted in writing in advance of undertaking 
the employment. Section 10101.102(b)(2) requires that, within 30 
calendar days of a significant change in the nature or the scope of the 
outside employment or in the employee's official position, the employee 
shall submit a revised request.
    Section 10101.102(c) sets forth the standard to be applied by the 
Board or its designee in acting on requests for prior approval of 
outside employment. Under this standard, approval shall be granted 
unless the Board or its designee determines that the outside employment 
is expected to involve conduct prohibited by statute or Federal 
regulation, including 5 CFR part 2635. Section 10101.102(c) further 
provides that, before granting approval, the Board or its designee 
shall provide the request to the Designated Agency Ethics Official 
(DAEO) in order for the employee to receive written ethics guidance and 
that this written ethics guidance shall be appended to the written 
approval.
    Section 10101.102(d) broadly defines ``employment'' for purposes of 
this section to cover any form of non-Federal employment or business 
relationship involving the provision of personal services, including 
writing when done under an arrangement with another person for 
production or publication of the written product. The definition of 
employment does not, however, include participation in the activities 
of nonprofit charitable, religious, professional, social, fraternal, 
and similar organizations unless such activities are for compensation 
other than the reimbursement of expenses, involve the provision of 
professional services or advice, or the organization's activities are 
devoted substantially to matters relating to the employee's official 
duties as defined in 5 CFR 2635.807(a)(2)(i)(B) through (E).

[[Page 54862]]

III. Matters of Regulatory Procedure

    Under 5 U.S.C. 553(a)(2), rules relating to agency management or 
personnel are exempt from the notice and comment rulemaking 
requirements of the Administrative Procedure Act (APA). In addition, 
under 5 U.S.C. 553(b)(3)(A), notice and comment rulemaking requirements 
do not apply to rules concerning matters of agency organization, 
procedure, or practice. Given that the rule concerns matters of agency 
management or personnel, and organization, procedure, or practice, the 
notice and comment requirements of the APA do not apply here. Nor is a 
public hearing required under 45 U.S.C. 160a. Furthermore, under 5 
U.S.C. 553(b)(3)(B), the NMB finds that good cause exists to waive the 
proposed rulemaking requirements under the APA because the notice and 
comment procedures would be contrary to the public interest. The 
Federal Aviation Administration Modernization and Reform Act of 2012 
included a provision for the Government Accountability Office (GAO) to 
evaluate NMB programs and activities every 2 years. In its most recent 
evaluation, GAO recommended that the NMB implement internal controls to 
ensure that employee requests for outside employment comply with OGE 
Standards and federal law. For this reason, the NMB finds good cause to 
issue this regulation as an interim final rule with a provision for a 
60 day public comment period. The NMB will review all comments received 
during the comment period and will consider any modifications that 
appear appropriate in adopting this rule as final, with the concurrence 
of OGE.

Executive Order 12866

    This rule is not a significant rule for purposes of Executive Order 
12866 and has not been reviewed by the Office of Management and Budget.

Regulatory Flexibility Act

    As required by the Regulatory Flexibility Act, the NMB certifies 
that these regulatory changes will not have a significant impact on 
small business entities. This rule will not have any significant impact 
on the quality of the human environment under the National 
Environmental Policy Act.

Paperwork Reduction Act

    The NMB has determined that the Paperwork Reduction Act does not 
apply because this interim regulation does not contain any information 
collection requirements that require the approval of the Office of 
Management and Budget.

List of Subjects in 5 CFR Part 10101

    Conflicts of interests, Government employees.

    Dated: October 18, 2018.

    By direction of the Board.
Mary Johnson,
General Counsel, National Mediation Board.
Emory A. Rounds, III,
Director, U.S. Office of Government Ethics.


0
For the reasons set forth in the preamble, the National Mediation Board 
with the concurrence of the U.S. Office of Government Ethics, is 
amending title 5 of the Code of Federal Regulations by establishing 
chapter CI, consisting of part 10101, to read as follows:

CHAPTER CI--NATIONAL MEDIATION BOARD

PART 10101--SUPPLEMENTAL STANDARDS OF ETHICAL CONDUCT FOR EMPLOYEES 
OF THE NATIONAL MEDIATION BOARD

Sec.
10101.101 General.
10101.102 Prior approval for outside employment.

    Authority: 5 U.S.C. 7301; 5 U.S.C. App. (Ethics in Government 
Act of 1978); 44 Stat. 577, as amended; 45 U.S.C. 151, 160a; E.O. 
12674, 54 FR 15159, 3 CFR, 189 Comp., p. 215, as modified by E.O. 
12731, 55 FR 42547, 3CFR, 1990 Comp., p. 306; 5 CFR 2635.105, 
2635.803.


Sec.  10101.101  General.

    Purpose. In accordance with 5 CFR 2635.105, the regulations in this 
part apply all employees of the National Mediation Board (NMB) and 
supplement the Standards of Ethical Conduct for Employees of the 
Executive Branch at 5 CFR 2635.


Sec.  10101.102  Prior approval for outside employment.

    (a) General Requirement. Before engaging in compensated or 
uncompensated outside employment, all National Mediation Board 
employees must obtain written approval from the Board or its designee.
    (b) Procedure for requesting approval. (1) The approval by the 
Board or its designee shall be requested in writing in advance of 
engaging in outside employment.
    (2) Upon a significant change in the nature of scope of the outside 
employment or in the employee's official position, the employee shall 
submit a revised request for approval within 30 calendar days.
    (c) Standard for approval. (1) Approval shall be granted unless the 
Board or its designee determines that the outside employment is 
expected to involve conduct prohibited by statute or Federal 
regulation, including 5 CFR part 2635.
    (2) As part of the approval process, the Board or its designee 
shall provide the request to the Designated Agency Ethics Official 
(DAEO) in order for the employee to receive written ethics guidance. In 
the event, the DAEO is the Board's designee, the DAEO shall provide 
written ethics guidance upon receiving the request. This written ethics 
guidance shall be appended to the written approval.
    (d) Definition of employment. For purposes of this section, 
``employment'' means any form of non-Federal employment or business 
relationship, compensated or uncompensated, involving the provision of 
personal services by the employee. 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 when 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 are for compensation other than reimbursement of expenses; 
such activities involve the provision of professional services or 
advice; or the organization's activities are devoted substantially to 
matters relating to the employee's official duties as defined in 5 CFR 
2635.807(a)(2)(i)(B) through (E).

[FR Doc. 2018-23548 Filed 10-31-18; 8:45 am]
 BILLING CODE 7550-01-P