WASHINGTON, DC - JANUARY 20: U.S. President Joe Biden prepares to sign a series of executive orders at the Resolute Desk in the Oval Office just hours after his inauguration on January 20, 2021 in Washington, DC. Biden became the 46th president of the United States earlier today during the ceremony at the U.S. Capitol. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
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President Biden’s first executive orders focus on immigration, climate change and COVID-19

Newly-inaugurated President Biden signed his first executive orders in the Oval Office on Wednesday. The executive actions included requiring face masks on all federal property and interstate travel for 100 days, rejoining the Paris Climate Accord and providing support for underserved communities.

Only two recent presidents signed executive actions on their first day in office — and each signed just one. The U.S. will also rejoin the Paris Climate Accords.

Every proclamation and executive order from President Joe Biden’s first day in office

Paris Climate Agreement

ACCEPTANCE ON BEHALF OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA

I, Joseph R. Biden Jr., President of the United States of America, having seen and considered the Paris Agreement, done at Paris on December 12, 2015, do hereby accept the said Agreement and every article and clause thereof on behalf of the United States of America.

Done at Washington this 20th day of January, 2021.

JOSEPH R. BIDEN JR.


Executive Order On Advancing Racial Equity and Support for Underserved Communities Through the Federal Government

By the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, it is hereby ordered:  

Section 1.  Policy.  Equal opportunity is the bedrock of American democracy, and our diversity is one of our country’s greatest strengths.  But for too many, the American Dream remains out of reach.  Entrenched disparities in our laws and public policies, and in our public and private institutions, have often denied that equal opportunity to individuals and communities.  Our country faces converging economic, health, and climate crises that have exposed and exacerbated inequities, while a historic movement for justice has highlighted the unbearable human costs of systemic racism.  Our Nation deserves an ambitious whole-of-government equity agenda that matches the scale of the opportunities and challenges that we face.

It is therefore the policy of my Administration that the Federal Government should pursue a comprehensive approach to advancing equity for all, including people of color and others who have been historically underserved, marginalized, and adversely affected by persistent poverty and inequality.  Affirmatively advancing equity, civil rights, racial justice, and equal opportunity is the responsibility of the whole of our Government.  Because advancing equity requires a systematic approach to embedding fairness in decision-making processes, executive departments and agencies (agencies) must recognize and work to redress inequities in their policies and programs that serve as barriers to equal opportunity.  

By advancing equity across the Federal Government, we can create opportunities for the improvement of communities that have been historically underserved, which benefits everyone.  For example, an analysis shows that closing racial gaps in wages, housing credit, lending opportunities, and access to higher education would amount to an additional $5 trillion in gross domestic product in the American economy over the next 5 years.  The Federal Government’s goal in advancing equity is to provide everyone with the opportunity to reach their full potential.  Consistent with these aims, each agency must assess whether, and to what extent, its programs and policies perpetuate systemic barriers to opportunities and benefits for people of color and other underserved groups.  Such assessments will better equip agencies to develop policies and programs that deliver resources and benefits equitably to all.  

Sec. 2.  Definitions.  For purposes of this order:  (a)  The term “equity” means the consistent and systematic fair, just, and impartial treatment of all individuals, including individuals who belong to underserved communities that have been denied such treatment, such as Black, Latino, and Indigenous and Native American persons, Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders and other persons of color; members of religious minorities; lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ+) persons; persons with disabilities; persons who live in rural areas; and persons otherwise adversely affected by persistent poverty or inequality. 

(b)  The term “underserved communities” refers to populations sharing a particular characteristic, as well as geographic communities, that have been systematically denied a full opportunity to participate in aspects of economic, social, and civic life, as exemplified by the list in the preceding definition of “equity.”   

Sec. 3.  Role of the Domestic Policy Council.  The role of the White House Domestic Policy Council (DPC) is to coordinate the formulation and implementation of my Administration’s domestic policy objectives.  Consistent with this role, the DPC will coordinate efforts to embed equity principles, policies, and approaches across the Federal Government.  This will include efforts to remove systemic barriers to and provide equal access to opportunities and benefits, identify communities the Federal Government has underserved, and develop policies designed to advance equity for those communities.  The DPC-led interagency process will ensure that these efforts are made in coordination with the directors of the National Security Council and the National Economic Council.  

Sec. 4.  Identifying Methods to Assess Equity.  (a)  The Director of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) shall, in partnership with the heads of agencies, study methods for assessing whether agency policies and actions create or exacerbate barriers to full and equal participation by all eligible individuals.  The study should aim to identify the best methods, consistent with applicable law, to assist agencies in assessing equity with respect to race, ethnicity, religion, income, geography, gender identity, sexual orientation, and disability.  

(b)  As part of this study, the Director of OMB shall consider whether to recommend that agencies employ pilot programs to test model assessment tools and assist agencies in doing so.  

(c)  Within 6 months of the date of this order, the Director of OMB shall deliver a report to the President describing the best practices identified by the study and, as appropriate, recommending approaches to expand use of those methods across the Federal Government.

Sec. 5.  Conducting an Equity Assessment in Federal Agencies.  The head of each agency, or designee, shall, in consultation with the Director of OMB, select certain of the agency’s programs and policies for a review that will assess whether underserved communities and their members face systemic barriers in accessing benefits and opportunities available pursuant to those policies and programs.  The head of each agency, or designee, shall conduct such review and within 200 days of the date of this order provide a report to the Assistant to the President for Domestic Policy (APDP) reflecting findings on the following:  

(a)  Potential barriers that underserved communities and individuals may face to enrollment in and access to benefits and services in Federal programs; 

(b)  Potential barriers that underserved communities and individuals may face in taking advantage of agency procurement and contracting opportunities;

(c)  Whether new policies, regulations, or guidance documents may be necessary to advance equity in agency actions and programs; and

(d)  The operational status and level of institutional resources available to offices or divisions within the agency that are responsible for advancing civil rights or whose mandates specifically include serving underrepresented or disadvantaged communities.

Sec. 6.  Allocating Federal Resources to Advance Fairness and Opportunity.  The Federal Government should, consistent with applicable law, allocate resources to address the historic failure to invest sufficiently, justly, and equally in underserved communities, as well as individuals from those communities.  To this end:  

(a)  The Director of OMB shall identify opportunities to promote equity in the budget that the President submits to the Congress.

(b)  The Director of OMB shall, in coordination with the heads of agencies, study strategies, consistent with applicable law, for allocating Federal resources in a manner that increases investment in underserved communities, as well as individuals from those communities.  The Director of OMB shall report the findings of this study to the President.  

Sec. 7.  Promoting Equitable Delivery of Government Benefits and Equitable Opportunities.  Government programs are designed to serve all eligible individuals.  And Government contracting and procurement opportunities should be available on an equal basis to all eligible providers of goods and services.  To meet these objectives and to enhance compliance with existing civil rights laws:  

(a)  Within 1 year of the date of this order, the head of each agency shall consult with the APDP and the Director of OMB to produce a plan for addressing: 

(i)   any barriers to full and equal participation in programs identified pursuant to section 5(a) of this order; and 

(ii)  any barriers to full and equal participation in agency procurement and contracting opportunities identified pursuant to section 5(b) of this order.  

(b)  The Administrator of the U.S. Digital Service, the United States Chief Technology Officer, the Chief Information Officer of the United States, and the heads of other agencies, or their designees, shall take necessary actions, consistent with applicable law, to support agencies in developing such plans.

Sec. 8.  Engagement with Members of Underserved Communities.  In carrying out this order, agencies shall consult with members of communities that have been historically underrepresented in the Federal Government and underserved by, or subject to discrimination in, Federal policies and programs.  The head of each agency shall evaluate opportunities, consistent with applicable law, to increase coordination, communication, and engagement with community-based organizations and civil rights organizations.

Sec. 9.  Establishing an Equitable Data Working Group.  Many Federal datasets are not disaggregated by race, ethnicity, gender, disability, income, veteran status, or other key demographic variables.  This lack of data has cascading effects and impedes efforts to measure and advance equity.  A first step to promoting equity in Government action is to gather the data necessary to inform that effort.  

(a)  Establishment.  There is hereby established an Interagency Working Group on Equitable Data (Data Working Group).

(b)  Membership.  

(i)    The Chief Statistician of the United States and the United States Chief Technology Officer shall serve as Co-Chairs of the Data Working Group and coordinate its work.  The Data Working Group shall include representatives of agencies as determined by the Co-Chairs to be necessary to complete the work of the Data Working Group, but at a minimum shall include the following officials, or their designees:  

(A)  the Director of OMB; 

(B)  the Secretary of Commerce, through the Director of the U.S. Census Bureau; 

(C)  the Chair of the Council of Economic Advisers; 

(D)  the Chief Information Officer of the United States; 

(E)  the Secretary of the Treasury, through the Assistant Secretary of the Treasury for Tax Policy; 

(F)  the Chief Data Scientist of the United States; and

(G)  the Administrator of the U.S. Digital Service.

(ii)   The DPC shall work closely with the Co-Chairs of the Data Working Group and assist in the Data Working Group’s interagency coordination functions. 

(iii)  The Data Working Group shall consult with agencies to facilitate the sharing of information and best practices, consistent with applicable law.

(c)  Functions.  The Data Working Group shall:  

(i)   through consultation with agencies, study and provide recommendations to the APDP identifying inadequacies in existing Federal data collection programs, policies, and infrastructure across agencies, and strategies for addressing any deficiencies identified; and

(ii)  support agencies in implementing actions, consistent with applicable law and privacy interests, that expand and refine the data available to the Federal Government to measure equity and capture the diversity of the American people.

(d)  OMB shall provide administrative support for the Data Working Group, consistent with applicable law.

Sec. 10.  Revocation.  (a)  Executive Order 13950 of September 22, 2020 (Combating Race and Sex Stereotyping), is hereby revoked.

(b)  The heads of agencies covered by Executive Order 13950 shall review and identify proposed and existing agency actions related to or arising from Executive Order 13950.  The head of each agency shall, within 60 days of the date of this order, consider suspending, revising, or rescinding any such actions, including all agency actions to terminate or restrict contracts or grants pursuant to Executive Order 13950, as appropriate and consistent with applicable law.

(c)  Executive Order 13958 of November 2, 2020 (Establishing the President’s Advisory 1776 Commission), is hereby revoked.

Sec. 11.  General Provisions.  (a)  Nothing in this order shall be construed to impair or otherwise affect:  

(i)   the authority granted by law to an executive department or agency, or the head thereof; or

(ii)  the functions of the Director of the Office of Management and Budget relating to budgetary, administrative, or legislative proposals.

(b)  This order shall be implemented consistent with applicable law and subject to the availability of appropriations.

(c)  Independent agencies are strongly encouraged to comply with the provisions of this order.

(d)  This order is not intended to, and does not, create any right or benefit, substantive or procedural, enforceable at law or in equity by any party against the United States, its departments, agencies, or entities, its officers, employees, or agents, or any other person.

JOSEPH R. BIDEN JR.

THE WHITE HOUSE, 
January 20, 2021.


Proclamation on Ending Discriminatory Bans on Entry to The United States

BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA

A PROCLAMATION

The United States was built on a foundation of religious freedom and tolerance, a principle enshrined in the United States Constitution.  Nevertheless, the previous administration enacted a number of Executive Orders and Presidential Proclamations that prevented certain individuals from entering the United States — first from primarily Muslim countries, and later, from largely African countries.  Those actions are a stain on our national conscience and are inconsistent with our long history of welcoming people of all faiths and no faith at all.

Beyond contravening our values, these Executive Orders and Proclamations have undermined our national security.  They have jeopardized our global network of alliances and partnerships and are a moral blight that has dulled the power of our example the world over.  And they have separated loved ones, inflicting pain that will ripple for years to come.  They are just plain wrong.  

Make no mistake, where there are threats to our Nation, we will address them.  Where there are opportunities to strengthen information-sharing with partners, we will pursue them.  And when visa applicants request entry to the United States, we will apply a rigorous, individualized vetting system.  But we will not turn our backs on our values with discriminatory bans on entry into the United States.

NOW, THEREFORE, I, JOSEPH R. BIDEN JR., President of the United States, by the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, including sections 212(f) and 215(a) of the Immigration and Nationality Act, 8 U.S.C. 1182(f) and 1185(a), hereby find that it is in the interests of the United States to revoke Executive Order 13780 of March 6, 2017 (Protecting the Nation From Foreign Terrorist Entry Into the United States), Proclamation 9645 of September 24, 2017 (Enhancing Vetting Capabilities and Processes for Detecting Attempted Entry Into the United States by Terrorists or Other Public-Safety Threats), Proclamation 9723 of April 10, 2018 (Maintaining Enhanced Vetting Capabilities and Processes for Detecting Attempted Entry Into the United States by Terrorists or Other Public-Safety Threats), and Proclamation 9983 of January 31, 2020 (Improving Enhanced Vetting Capabilities and Processes for Detecting Attempted Entry Into the United States by Terrorists or Other Public-Safety Threats).  Our national security will be enhanced by revoking the Executive Order and Proclamations.  

Accordingly, I hereby proclaim:  

Section 1.  Revocations.  Executive Order 13780, and Proclamations 9645, 9723, and 9983 are hereby revoked. 

Sec. 2.  Resumption of Visa Processing and Clearing the Backlog of Cases in Waiver Processing.  (a)  The Secretary of State shall direct all Embassies and Consulates, consistent with applicable law and visa processing procedures, including any related to coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), to resume visa processing in a manner consistent with the revocation of the Executive Order and Proclamations specified in section 1 of this proclamation.

(b)  Within 45 days of the date of this proclamation, the Secretary of State shall provide to the President a report that includes the following elements:  

(i)    The number of visa applicants who were being considered for a waiver of restrictions under Proclamation 9645 or 9983 on the date of this proclamation and a plan for expeditiously adjudicating their pending visa applications.

(ii)   A proposal to ensure that individuals whose immigrant visa applications were denied on the basis of the suspension and restriction on entry imposed by Proclamation 9645 or 9983 may have their applications reconsidered.  This proposal shall consider whether to reopen immigrant visa applications that were denied due to the suspension and restriction on entry imposed by Proclamation 9645 or 9983, whether it is necessary to charge an additional fee to process those visa applications, and development of a plan for the Department of State to expedite consideration of those visa applications.

(iii)  A plan to ensure that visa applicants are not prejudiced as a result of a previous visa denial due to the suspension and restriction on entry imposed by Proclamation 9645 or 9983 if they choose to re-apply for a visa.

Sec. 3.  Review of Information-Sharing Relationships and a Plan to Strengthen Partnerships.  Within 120 days of the date of this proclamation, the Secretary of State and the Secretary of Homeland Security, in consultation with the Director of National Intelligence, shall provide to the President a report consisting of the following elements:  

(a)  A description of the current screening and vetting procedures for those seeking immigrant and nonimmigrant entry to the United States.  This should include information about any procedures put in place as a result of any of the Executive Order and Proclamations revoked in section 1 of this proclamation and should also include an evaluation of the usefulness of form DS-5535.

(b)  A review of foreign government information-sharing practices vis-à-vis the United States in order to evaluate the efficacy of those practices, their contribution to processes for screening and vetting those individuals seeking entry to the United States as immigrants and nonimmigrants, and how the United States ensures the accuracy and reliability of the information provided by foreign governments.

(c)  Recommendations to improve screening and vetting activities, including diplomatic efforts to improve international information-sharing, use of foreign assistance funds, where appropriate, to support capacity building for information-sharing and identity-management practices, and ways to further integrate relevant executive department and agency data into the vetting system.

(d)  A review of the current use of social media identifiers in the screening and vetting process, including an assessment of whether this use has meaningfully improved screening and vetting, and recommendations in light of this assessment.

Sec. 4.  General Provisions.  (a)  Nothing in this proclamation shall be construed to impair or otherwise affect:  

(i)   the authority granted by law to an executive department or agency, or the head thereof; or

(ii)  the functions of the Director of the Office of Management and Budget relating to budgetary, administrative, or legislative proposals.

(b)  This proclamation shall be implemented in a manner consistent with applicable law and subject to the availability of appropriations.

(c)  This proclamation is not intended to, and does not, create any right or benefit, substantive or procedural, enforceable at law or in equity by any party against the United States, its departments, agencies, or entities, its officers, employees, or agents, or any other person.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this twentieth day of January, in the year of our Lord two thousand twenty-one, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and forty-fifth.

JOSEPH R. BIDEN JR.


Executive Order on Protecting the Federal Workforce and Requiring Mask-Wearing

By the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, including section 7902(c) of title 5, United States Code, it is hereby ordered as follows:

Section 1.  Policy.  It is the policy of my Administration to halt the spread of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) by relying on the best available data and science-based public health measures.  Such measures include wearing masks when around others, physical distancing, and other related precautions recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).  Put simply, masks and other public health measures reduce the spread of the disease, particularly when communities make widespread use of such measures, and thus save lives.

Accordingly, to protect the Federal workforce and individuals interacting with the Federal workforce, and to ensure the continuity of Government services and activities, on-duty or on-site Federal employees, on-site Federal contractors, and other individuals in Federal buildings and on Federal lands should all wear masks, maintain physical distance, and adhere to other public health measures, as provided in CDC guidelines. 

Sec. 2.  Immediate Action Regarding Federal Employees, Contractors, Buildings, and Lands.  (a)  The heads of executive departments and agencies (agencies) shall immediately take action, as appropriate and consistent with applicable law, to require compliance with CDC guidelines with respect to wearing masks, maintaining physical distance, and other public health measures by:  on-duty or on-site Federal employees; on-site Federal contractors; and all persons in Federal buildings or on Federal lands. 

(b)  The Director of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), the Director of the Office of Personnel Management (OPM), and the Administrator of General Services, in coordination with the President’s Management Council and the Coordinator of the COVID-19 Response and Counselor to the President (COVID-19 Response Coordinator), shall promptly issue guidance to assist heads of agencies with implementation of this section.

(c)  Heads of agencies shall promptly consult, as appropriate, with State, local, Tribal, and territorial government officials, Federal employees, Federal employee unions, Federal contractors, and any other interested parties concerning the implementation of this section.

(d)  Heads of agencies may make categorical or case-by-case exceptions in implementing subsection (a) of this section to the extent that doing so is necessary or required by law, and consistent with applicable law.  If heads of agencies make such exceptions, they shall require appropriate alternative safeguards, such as additional physical distancing measures, additional testing, or reconfiguration of workspace, consistent with applicable law.  Heads of agencies shall document all exceptions in writing.

(e)  Heads of agencies shall review their existing authorities and, to the extent permitted by law and subject to the availability of appropriations and resources, seek to provide masks to individuals in Federal buildings when needed.

(f)  The COVID-19 Response Coordinator shall coordinate the implementation of this section.  Heads of the agencies listed in 31 U.S.C. 901(b) shall update the COVID-19 Response Coordinator on their progress in implementing this section, including any categorical exceptions established under subsection (d) of this section, within 7 days of the date of this order and regularly thereafter.  Heads of agencies are encouraged to bring to the attention of the COVID-19 Response Coordinator any questions regarding the scope or implementation of this section. 

Sec. 3.  Encouraging Masking Across America.  (a)  The Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS), including through the Director of CDC, shall engage, as appropriate, with State, local, Tribal, and territorial officials, as well as business, union, academic, and other community leaders, regarding mask-wearing and other public health measures, with the goal of maximizing public compliance with, and addressing any obstacles to, mask-wearing and other public health best practices identified by CDC.

(b)  The COVID-19 Response Coordinator, in coordination with the Secretary of HHS, the Secretary of Homeland Security, and the heads of other relevant agencies, shall promptly identify and inform agencies of options to incentivize, support, and encourage widespread mask-wearing consistent with CDC guidelines and applicable law.

Sec. 4.  Safer Federal Workforce Task Force.

(a)  Establishment.  There is hereby established the Safer Federal Workforce Task Force (Task Force).

(b)  Membership.  The Task Force shall consist of the following members:

(i)     the Director of OPM, who shall serve as Co-Chair;

(ii)    the Administrator of General Services, who shall serve as Co-Chair;

(iii)   the COVID-19 Response Coordinator, who shall serve as Co-Chair;
(iv)    the Director of OMB;

(v)     the Director of the Federal Protective Service;

(vi)    the Director of the United States Secret Service;

(vii)   the Administrator of the Federal Emergency Management Agency;

(viii)  the Director of CDC; and

(ix)    the heads of such other agencies as the Co-Chairs may individually or jointly invite to participate.

(c)  Organization.  A member of the Task Force may designate, to perform the Task Force functions of the member, a senior-level official who is a full-time officer or employee of the member’s agency.  At the direction of the Co-Chairs, the Task Force may establish subgroups consisting exclusively of Task Force members or their designees, as appropriate.

(d)  Administration.  The General Services Administration shall provide funding and administrative support for the Task Force to the extent permitted by law and within existing appropriations.  The Co-Chairs shall convene regular meetings of the Task Force, determine its agenda, and direct its work.

(e)  Mission.  The Task Force shall provide ongoing guidance to heads of agencies on the operation of the Federal Government, the safety of its employees, and the continuity of Government functions during the COVID-19 pandemic.  Such guidance shall be based on public health best practices as determined by CDC and other public health experts, and shall address, at a minimum, the following subjects as they relate to the Federal workforce: 

(i)     testing methodologies and protocols;

(ii)    case investigation and contact tracing;

(iii)   requirements of and limitations on physical distancing, including recommended occupancy and density standards;

(iv)    equipment needs and requirements, including personal protective equipment;

(v)     air filtration; 

(vi)    enhanced environmental disinfection and cleaning;

(vii)   safe commuting and telework options;

(viii)  enhanced technological infrastructure to support telework;

(ix)    vaccine prioritization, distribution, and administration;

(x)     approaches for coordinating with State, local, Tribal, and territorial health officials, as well as business, union, academic, and other community leaders;

(xi)    any management infrastructure needed by agencies to implement public health guidance; and

(xii)   circumstances under which exemptions might appropriately be made to agency policies in accordance with CDC guidelines, such as for mission-critical purposes. 

(f)  Agency Cooperation.  The head of each agency listed in 31 U.S.C. 901(b) shall, consistent with applicable law, promptly provide the Task Force a report on COVID-19 safety protocols, safety plans, or guidance regarding the operation of the agency and the safety of its employees, and any other information that the head of the agency deems relevant to the Task Force’s work.  

Sec. 5.  Federal Employee Testing.  The Secretary of HHS, through the Director of CDC, shall promptly develop and submit to the COVID-19 Response Coordinator a testing plan for the Federal workforce.  This plan shall be based on community transmission metrics and address the populations to be tested, testing types, frequency of testing, positive case protocols, and coordination with local public health authorities for contact tracing.

Sec. 6.  Research and Development.  The Director of the Office of Science and Technology Policy, in consultation with the Secretary of HHS (through the National Science and Technology Council), the Director of OMB, the Director of CDC, the Director of the National Institutes of Health, the Director of the National Science Foundation, and the heads of any other appropriate agencies, shall assess the availability of Federal research grants to study best practices for implementing, and innovations to better implement, effective mask-wearing and physical distancing policies, with respect to both the Federal workforce and the general public.

Sec. 7.  Scope.  (a)  For purposes of this order: 

(i)    “Federal employees” and “Federal contractors” mean employees (including members of the Armed Forces and members of the National Guard in Federal service) and contractors (including such contractors’ employees) working for the executive branch; 

(ii)   “Federal buildings” means buildings, or office space within buildings, owned, rented, or leased by the executive branch of which a substantial portion of occupants are Federal employees or Federal contractors; and 

(iii)  “Federal lands” means lands under executive branch control.

(b)  The Director of OPM and the Administrator of General Services shall seek to consult, in coordination with the heads of any other relevant agencies and the COVID-19 Response Coordinator, with the Sergeants at Arms of the Senate and the House of Representatives and the Director of the Administrative Office of the United States Courts (or such other persons designated by the Majority and Minority Leaders of the Senate, the Speaker and Minority Leader of the House, or the Chief Justice of the United States, respectively), to promote mask-wearing, physical distancing, and adherence to other public health measures within the legislative and judicial branches, and shall provide requested technical assistance as needed to facilitate compliance with CDC guidelines.

Sec. 8.  General Provisions.  (a)  Nothing in this order shall be construed to impair or otherwise affect:

(i)   the authority granted by law to an executive department or agency, or the head thereof; or

(ii)  the functions of the Director of the Office of Management and Budget relating to budgetary, administrative, or legislative proposals.

(b)  This order shall be implemented consistent with applicable law and subject to the availability of appropriations.

(c)  Independent agencies are strongly encouraged to comply with the requirements of this order.

(d)  This order is not intended to, and does not, create any right or benefit, substantive or procedural, enforceable at law or in equity by any party against the United States, its departments, agencies, or entities, its officers, employees, or agents, or any other person.

JOSEPH R. BIDEN JR.

THE WHITE HOUSE,
January 20, 2021.


Executive Order on Organizing and Mobilizing the United States Government to Provide a Unified and Effective Response to Combat COVID-19 and to Provide United States Leadership on Global Health and Security

By the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, it is hereby ordered as follows:  

Section 1.  Purpose.  The Federal Government must act swiftly and aggressively to combat coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).  To that end, this order creates the position of Coordinator of the COVID-19 Response and Counselor to the President and takes other steps to organize the White House and activities of the Federal Government to combat COVID-19 and prepare for future biological and pandemic threats. 

Sec. 2.  Organizing the White House to Combat COVID-19.  (a)  In order to effectively, fully, and immediately respond to COVID-19, there is established within the Executive Office of the President the position of Coordinator of the COVID-19 Response and Counselor to the President (COVID-19 Response Coordinator) and the position of Deputy Coordinator of the COVID-19 Response.  The COVID-19 Response Coordinator shall report directly to the President; advise and assist the President and executive departments and agencies (agencies) in responding to the COVID-19 pandemic; coordinate all elements of the COVID-19 response; and perform such duties as the President may otherwise direct.  These duties shall include:  

(i)    coordinating a Government-wide effort to reduce disparities in the response, care, and treatment of COVID-19, including racial and ethnic disparities;

(ii)   coordinating the Federal Government’s efforts to produce, supply, and distribute personal protective equipment, vaccines, tests, and other supplies for the Nation’s COVID-19 response, including through the use of the Defense Production Act, as amended (50 U.S.C. 4501 et seq.);

(iii)  coordinating the Federal Government’s efforts to expand COVID-19 testing and the use of testing as an effective public health response;

(iv)   coordinating the Federal Government’s efforts to support the timely, safe, and effective delivery of COVID-19 vaccines to the United States population;

(v)    coordinating the Federal Government’s efforts to support the safe reopening and operation of schools, child care providers, and Head Start programs, and to help ensure the continuity of educational and other services for young children and elementary and secondary students during the COVID-19 pandemic; and

(vi)   coordinating, as appropriate, with State, local, Tribal, and territorial authorities.

(b)  The COVID-19 Response Coordinator shall have the authority to convene principals from relevant agencies, in consultation with the Assistant to the President for Domestic Policy (APDP) on matters involving the domestic COVID-19 response, and in consultation with the Assistant to the President for National Security Affairs (APNSA) on matters involving the global COVID-19 response.  The COVID-19 Response Coordinator shall also coordinate any corresponding deputies and interagency processes.

(c)  The COVID-19 Response Coordinator may act through designees in performing these or any other duties.

Sec. 3.  United States Leadership on Global Health and Security and the Global COVID-19 Response. (a)  Preparing to Respond to Biological Threats and Pandemics.  To identify, monitor, prepare for, and, if necessary, respond to emerging biological and pandemic threats: 

(i)   The APNSA shall convene the National Security Council (NSC) Principals Committee as necessary to coordinate the Federal Government’s efforts to address such threats and to advise the President on the global response to and recovery from COVID-19, including matters regarding:  the intersection of the COVID-19 response and other national security equities; global health security; engaging with and strengthening the World Health Organization; public health, access to healthcare, and the secondary impacts of COVID-19; and emerging biological risks and threats, whether naturally occurring, deliberate, or accidental. 

(ii)  Within 180 days of the date of this order, the APNSA shall, in coordination with relevant agencies, the COVID-19 Response Coordinator, and the APDP, complete a review of and recommend actions to the President concerning emerging domestic and global biological risks and national biopreparedness policies.  The review and recommended actions shall incorporate lessons from the COVID-19 pandemic and, among other things, address:  the readiness of the pandemic supply chain, healthcare workforce, and hospitals; the development of a framework of pandemic readiness with specific triggers for when agencies should take action in response to large-scale biological events; pandemic border readiness; the development and distribution of medical countermeasures; epidemic forecasting and modeling; public health data modernization; bio-related intelligence; bioeconomic investments; biotechnology risks; the development of a framework for coordinating with and distributing responsibilities as between the Federal Government and State, local, Tribal, and territorial authorities; and State, local, Tribal, and territorial preparedness for biological events. 

(b)  NSC Directorate on Global Health Security and Biodefense.  There shall be an NSC Directorate on Global Health Security and Biodefense, which shall be headed by a Senior Director for Global Health Security and Biodefense.  The Senior Director shall be responsible for monitoring current and emerging biological threats, and shall report concurrently to the APNSA and to the COVID-19 Response Coordinator on matters relating to COVID-19.  The Senior Director shall oversee the Global Health Security Agenda Interagency Review Council, which was established pursuant to Executive Order 13747 of November 4, 2016 (Advancing the Global Health Security Agenda To Achieve a World Safe and Secure From Infectious Disease Threats), and is hereby reconvened as described in that order.

(c)  Responsibility for National Biodefense Preparedness.  Notwithstanding any statements in the National Security Presidential Memorandum-14 of September 18, 2018 (Support for National Biodefense), the APNSA shall be responsible for coordinating the Nation’s biodefense preparedness efforts, and, as stated in sections 1 and 2 of this order, the COVID-19 Response Coordinator shall be responsible for coordinating the Federal Government’s response to the COVID‑19 pandemic.

Sec. 4.  Prompt Resolution of Issues Related to the United States COVID-19 Response.  The heads of agencies shall, as soon as practicable, bring any procedural, departmental, legal, or funding obstacle to the COVID-19 response to the attention of the COVID-19 Response Coordinator.  The COVID-19 Response Coordinator shall, in coordination with relevant agencies, the APDP, and the APNSA, as appropriate, immediately bring to the President’s attention any issues that require Presidential guidance or decision-making.

Sec. 5.  General Provisions.  (a)  Nothing in this order shall be construed to impair or otherwise affect: 

(i)   the authority granted by law to an executive department or agency, or the head thereof; or

(ii)  the functions of the Director of the Office of Management and Budget relating to budgetary, administrative, or legislative proposals.

(b)  This order shall be implemented consistent with applicable law and subject to availability of appropriations.

(c)  This order is not intended to, and does not, create any right or benefit, substantive or procedural, enforceable at law or in equity by any party against the United States, its departments, agencies, or entities, its officers, employees, or agents, or any other person.

JOSEPH R. BIDEN JR. 

THE WHITE HOUSE,
January 20, 2021.


Executive Order on the Revision of Civil Immigration Enforcement Policies and Priorities

By the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, it is hereby ordered as follows: 

Section 1.  Policy.  Immigrants have helped strengthen America’s families, communities, businesses and workforce, and economy, infusing the United States with creativity, energy, and ingenuity.  The task of enforcing the immigration laws is complex and requires setting priorities to best serve the national interest.  The policy of my Administration is to protect national and border security, address the humanitarian challenges at the southern border, and ensure public health and safety.  We must also adhere to due process of law as we safeguard the dignity and well-being of all families and communities.  My Administration will reset the policies and practices for enforcing civil immigration laws to align enforcement with these values and priorities.  

Sec. 2.  Revocation.  Executive Order 13768 of January 25, 2017 (Enhancing Public Safety in the Interior of the United States), is hereby revoked.  The Secretary of State, the Attorney General, the Secretary of Homeland Security, the Director of the Office of Management and Budget, the Director of the Office of Personnel Management, and the heads of any other relevant executive departments and agencies (agencies) shall review any agency actions developed pursuant to Executive Order 13768 and take action, including issuing revised guidance, as appropriate and consistent with applicable law, that advances the policy set forth in section 1 of this order.

Sec. 3.  General Provisions.  (a)  Nothing in this order shall be construed to impair or otherwise affect: 

(i)   the authority granted by law to an executive department or agency, or the head thereof; or 

(ii)  the functions of the Director of the Office of Management and Budget relating to budgetary, administrative, or legislative proposals. 

(b)  This order shall be implemented consistent with applicable law and subject to the availability of appropriations. 

(c)  This order is not intended to, and does not, create any right or benefit, substantive or procedural, enforceable at law or in equity by any party against the United States, its departments, agencies, or entities, its officers, employees, or agents, or any other person. 

JOSEPH R. BIDEN JR.

THE WHITE HOUSE,
January 20, 2021.


Executive Order on Revocation of Certain Executive Orders Concerning Federal Regulation

By the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, it is hereby ordered that: 

Section 1.  Policy.  It is the policy of my Administration to use available tools to confront the urgent challenges facing the Nation, including the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, economic recovery, racial justice, and climate change.  To tackle these challenges effectively, executive departments and agencies (agencies) must be equipped with the flexibility to use robust regulatory action to address national priorities.  This order revokes harmful policies and directives that threaten to frustrate the Federal Government’s ability to confront these problems, and empowers agencies to use appropriate regulatory tools to achieve these goals.

Sec. 2.  Revocation of Orders.  Executive Order 13771 of January 30, 2017 (Reducing Regulation and Controlling Regulatory Costs), Executive Order 13777 of February 24, 2017 (Enforcing the Regulatory Reform Agenda), Executive Order 13875 of June 14, 2019 (Evaluating and Improving the Utility of Federal Advisory Committees), Executive Order 13891 of October 9, 2019 (Promoting the Rule of Law Through Improved Agency Guidance Documents), Executive Order 13892 of October 9, 2019 (Promoting the Rule of Law Through Transparency and Fairness in Civil Administrative Enforcement and Adjudication), and Executive Order 13893 of October 10, 2019 (Increasing Government Accountability for Administrative Actions by Reinvigorating Administrative PAYGO), are hereby revoked.

Sec. 3.  Implementation.  The Director of the Office of Management and Budget and the heads of agencies shall promptly take steps to rescind any orders, rules, regulations, guidelines, or policies, or portions thereof, implementing or enforcing the Executive Orders identified in section 2 of this order, as appropriate and consistent with applicable law, including the Administrative Procedure Act, 5 U.S.C. 551 et seq.  If in any case such rescission cannot be finalized immediately, the Director and the heads of agencies shall promptly take steps to provide all available exemptions authorized by any such orders, rules, regulations, guidelines, or policies, as appropriate and consistent with applicable law.  In addition, any personnel positions, committees, task forces, or other entities established pursuant to the Executive Orders identified in section 2 of this order, including the regulatory reform officer positions and regulatory reform task forces established by sections 2 and 3 of Executive Order 13777, shall be abolished, as appropriate and consistent with applicable law.

Sec. 4.  General Provisions.  (a)  Nothing in this order shall be construed to impair or otherwise affect:

(i)   the authority granted by law to an executive department or agency, or the head thereof; or

(ii)  the functions of the Director of the Office of Management and Budget relating to budgetary, administrative, or legislative proposals.

(b)  This order shall be implemented in a manner consistent with applicable law and subject to the availability of appropriations.

(c)  This order is not intended to, and does not, create any right or benefit, substantive or procedural, enforceable at law or in equity by any party against the United States, its departments, agencies, or entities, its officers, employees, or agents, or any other person.

JOSEPH R. BIDEN JR.

THE WHITE HOUSE,
January 20, 2021.


Executive Order on Ensuring a Lawful and Accurate Enumeration and Apportionment Pursuant to the Decennial Census

By the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, it is hereby ordered:  

Section 1.  Background.  We have long guaranteed all of the Nation’s inhabitants representation in the House of Representatives.  This tradition is foundational to our representative democracy, for our elected representatives have a responsibility to represent the interests of all people residing in the United States and affected by our laws.  This tradition also respects the dignity and humanity of every person.  Accordingly, the executive branch has always determined the population of each State, for purposes of congressional representation, without regard to whether its residents are in lawful immigration status. 

The census and apportionment processes are enshrined in the Constitution.  The Fourteenth Amendment apportions seats in the House of Representatives “among the several States according to their respective numbers, counting the whole number of persons in each State.”  (U.S. Const. amend. XIV, sec. 2.) Article I, in turn, provides that, in order to determine those numbers, an “actual Enumeration” of the population of the United States must be conducted every 10 years.  (U.S. Const. art. I, sec. 2, cl. 3.)  The Congress has assigned responsibility for conducting the decennial census to the Secretary of Commerce (Secretary).  (13 U.S.C. 141(a).)

Once the Secretary, through the Director of the U.S. Census Bureau, takes the count, the President must carry out the apportionment of Representatives among the States.  The Secretary prepares the “tabulation of total population by States . . . as required for the apportionment of Representatives,” and reports that tabulation to the President.  (13 U.S.C. 141(b).)  The President then sends a statement to the Congress showing “the whole number of persons in each State,” as ascertained under the census, and “the number of Representatives to which each State would be entitled under” the equal proportions apportionment method.  (2 U.S.C. 2a(a).)  The Clerk of the House of Representatives then transmits to each State a certification of the number of seats that the State receives under that apportionment.  (2 U.S.C. 2a(b).)  Finally, within 1 year of the decennial census date, the Secretary must also report to the Governor and officers or public bodies having responsibility for legislative apportionment or districting of each State the population tabulations to be used for apportioning districts within that State.  (13 U.S.C. 141(c).)  

At no point since our Nation’s Founding has a person’s immigration status alone served as a basis for excluding that person from the total population count used in apportionment.  Before the Civil War and the abolition of slavery, the Constitution did not give equal weight to every person counted under the census.  (U.S. Const. art. 1, sec. 2.)  In accord with constitutional and statutory requirements, however, every apportionment since ratification of the Fourteenth Amendment has calculated each State’s share of Representatives based on “the whole number of persons in each State,” excluding only “Indians not taxed” — an express constitutional exception that no longer has legal or practical effect.  (U.S. Const. amend. XIV, sec. 2; 2 U.S.C. 2a(a).)  The term “persons in each State” has always been understood to include every person whose usual place of residence was in that State as of the designated census date.  (See, e.g., Act of Mar. 1, 1790, ch. 2, secs. 1, 5, 1 Stat. 101, 103; Franklin v. Massachusetts, 505 U.S. 788, 804 (1992).)  This unbroken practice has ensured that “the basis of representation in the House” is “every individual of the community at large.”  (Evenwel v. Abbott, 136 S. Ct. 1120, 1127 (2016) (emphasis and quotation marks omitted).)  And it reflects a sound policy judgment that the apportionment base be both clear and insulated against manipulation designed to affect the balance of power among the States.

During the 2020 Census, the President announced a policy that broke from this long tradition.  It aimed to produce a different apportionment base — one that would, to the maximum extent feasible, exclude persons who are not in a lawful immigration status.  See Presidential Memorandum of July 21, 2020 (Excluding Illegal Aliens From the Apportionment Base Following the 2020 Census).  This policy conflicted with the principle of equal representation enshrined in our Constitution, census statutes, and historical tradition.  The policy further required the Census Bureau to inappropriately rely on records related to immigration status that were likely to be incomplete and inaccurate.

Sec. 2.  Policy.  Both the Fourteenth Amendment of the United States Constitution and section 2a(a) of title 2, United States Code, require that the apportionment base of each State, for the purpose of the reapportionment of Representatives following the decennial census, include all persons whose usual place of residence was in that State as of the designated census date, regardless of their immigration status.  These laws, affirmed by the executive branch’s longstanding historical practice, do not permit the exclusion of inhabitants of the United States from the apportionment base solely on the ground that they lack a lawful immigration status.  Reflecting this legal background, and the values of equal representation and respect that the Constitution and laws embody, it is the policy of the United States that reapportionment shall be based on the total number of persons residing in the several States, without regard for immigration status.  It is likewise essential that the census count be accurate and based on reliable and high-quality data. 

Sec. 3.  Ensuring that the Apportionment Base and State-Level Tabulations Include All Inhabitants of Each State.  In preparing the report to the President required under section 141(b) of title 13, United States Code, the Secretary shall report the tabulation of total population by State that reflects the whole number of persons whose usual residence was in each State as of the designated census date in section 141(a) of title 13, United States Code, without regard to immigration status.  In addition, the Secretary shall use tabulations of population reflecting the whole number of persons whose usual residence was in each State as of the census date, without regard to immigration status, in reports provided to the Governor and officers or public bodies having responsibility for legislative apportionment or districting of each State under section 141(c) of title 13, United States Code. 

Sec. 4.  Data Quality.  The Secretary shall take all necessary steps, consistent with law, to ensure that the total population information presented to the President and to the States is accurate and complies with all applicable laws. 

Sec. 5.  Revocation.  Executive Order 13880 of July 11, 2019 (Collecting Information About Citizenship Status in Connection With the Decennial Census), and the Presidential Memorandum of July 21, 2020 (Excluding Illegal Aliens From the Apportionment Base Following the 2020 Census), are hereby revoked. 

Sec. 6.  General Provisions.  (a)  Nothing in this order shall be construed to impair or otherwise affect:  

(i)   the authority granted by law to an executive department or agency, or the head thereof; or 

(ii)  the functions of the Director of the Office of Management and Budget relating to budgetary, administrative, or legislative proposals. 

(b)  This order shall be implemented consistent with applicable law and subject to the availability of appropriations. 

(c)  This order is not intended to, and does not, create any right or benefit, substantive or procedural, enforceable at law or in equity by any party against the United States, its departments, agencies, or entities, its officers, employees, or agents, or any other person. 

JOSEPH R. BIDEN JR.

THE WHITE HOUSE,
January 20, 2021


Executive Order on Protecting Public Health and the Environment and Restoring Science to Tackle the Climate Crisis

By the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, it is hereby ordered as follows:

Section 1.  Policy.  Our Nation has an abiding commitment to empower our workers and communities; promote and protect our public health and the environment; and conserve our national treasures and monuments, places that secure our national memory.  Where the Federal Government has failed to meet that commitment in the past, it must advance environmental justice.  In carrying out this charge, the Federal Government must be guided by the best science and be protected by processes that ensure the integrity of Federal decision-making.  It is, therefore, the policy of my Administration to listen to the science; to improve public health and protect our environment; to ensure access to clean air and water; to limit exposure to dangerous chemicals and pesticides; to hold polluters accountable, including those who disproportionately harm communities of color and low-income communities; to reduce greenhouse gas emissions; to bolster resilience to the impacts of climate change; to restore and expand our national treasures and monuments; and to prioritize both environmental justice and the creation of the well-paying union jobs necessary to deliver on these goals. 

To that end, this order directs all executive departments and agencies (agencies) to immediately review and, as appropriate and consistent with applicable law, take action to address the promulgation of Federal regulations and other actions during the last 4 years that conflict with these important national objectives, and to immediately commence work to confront the climate crisis.

Sec. 2.  Immediate Review of Agency Actions Taken Between January 20, 2017, and January 20, 2021.  (a)  The heads of all agencies shall immediately review all existing regulations, orders, guidance documents, policies, and any other similar agency actions (agency actions) promulgated, issued, or adopted between January 20, 2017, and January 20, 2021, that are or may be inconsistent with, or present obstacles to, the policy set forth in section 1 of this order.  For any such actions identified by the agencies, the heads of agencies shall, as appropriate and consistent with applicable law, consider suspending, revising, or rescinding the agency actions.  In addition, for the agency actions in the 4 categories set forth in subsections (i) through (iv) of this section, the head of the relevant agency, as appropriate and consistent with applicable law, shall consider publishing for notice and comment a proposed rule suspending, revising, or rescinding the agency action within the time frame specified. 

(i)    Reducing Methane Emissions in the Oil and Gas Sector:  “Oil and Natural Gas Sector: Emission Standards for New, Reconstructed, and Modified Sources Reconsideration,” 85 Fed. Reg. 57398 (September 15, 2020), by September 2021. 

(ii)   Establishing Ambitious, Job-Creating Fuel Economy Standards:  “The Safer Affordable Fuel-Efficient (SAFE) Vehicles Rule Part One: One National Program,” 84 Fed. Reg. 51310 (September 27, 2019), by April 2021; and “The Safer Affordable Fuel-Efficient (SAFE) Vehicles Rule for Model Years 2021–2026 Passenger Cars and Light Trucks,” 85 Fed. Reg. 24174 (April 30, 2020), by July 2021.  In considering whether to propose suspending, revising, or rescinding the latter rule, the agency should consider the views of representatives from labor unions, States, and industry.

(iii)  Job-Creating Appliance- and Building-Efficiency Standards:  “Energy Conservation Program for Appliance Standards: Procedures for Use in New or Revised Energy Conservation Standards and Test Procedures for Consumer Products and Commercial/Industrial Equipment,” 85 Fed. Reg. 8626 (February 14, 2020), with major revisions proposed by March 2021 and any remaining revisions proposed by June 2021; “Energy Conservation Program for Appliance Standards: Procedures for Evaluating Statutory Factors for Use in New or Revised Energy Conservation Standards,” 85 Fed. Reg. 50937 (August 19, 2020), with major revisions proposed by March 2021 and any remaining revisions proposed by June 2021; “Final Determination Regarding Energy Efficiency Improvements in the 2018 International Energy Conservation Code (IECC),” 84 Fed. Reg. 67435 (December 10, 2019), by May 2021; “Final Determination Regarding Energy Efficiency Improvements in ANSI/ASHRAE/IES Standard 90.1-2016: Energy Standard for Buildings, Except Low-Rise Residential Buildings,” 83 Fed. Reg. 8463 (February 27, 2018), by May 2021.

(iv)   Protecting Our Air from Harmful Pollution:  “National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants: Coal- and Oil-Fired Electric Utility Steam Generating Units—Reconsideration of Supplemental Finding and Residual Risk and Technology Review,” 85 Fed. Reg. 31286 (May 22, 2020), by August 2021; “Increasing Consistency and Transparency in Considering Benefits and Costs in the Clean Air Act Rulemaking Process,” 85 Fed. Reg. 84130 (December 23, 2020), as soon as possible; “Strengthening Transparency in Pivotal Science Underlying Significant Regulatory Actions and Influential Scientific Information,” 86 Fed. Reg. 469 (January 6, 2021), as soon as possible.

(b)  Within 30 days of the date of this order, heads of agencies shall submit to the Director of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) a preliminary list of any actions being considered pursuant to section (2)(a) of this order that would be completed by December 31, 2021, and that would be subject to OMB review.  Within 90 days of the date of this order, heads of agencies shall submit to the Director of OMB an updated list of any actions being considered pursuant to section (2)(a) of this order that would be completed by December 31, 2025, and that would be subject to OMB review.  At the time of submission to the Director of OMB, heads of agencies shall also send each list to the National Climate Advisor.  In addition, and at the same time, heads of agencies shall send to the National Climate Advisor a list of additional actions being considered pursuant to section (2)(a) of this order that would not be subject to OMB review.

(c)  Heads of agencies shall, as appropriate and consistent with applicable law, consider whether to take any additional agency actions to fully enforce the policy set forth in section 1 of this order.  With respect to the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency, the following specific actions should be considered:

(i)   proposing new regulations to establish comprehensive standards of performance and emission guidelines for methane and volatile organic compound emissions from existing operations in the oil and gas sector, including the exploration and production, transmission, processing, and storage segments, by September 2021; and

(ii)  proposing a Federal Implementation Plan in accordance with the Environmental Protection Agency’s “Findings of Failure To Submit State Implementation Plan Revisions in Response to the 2016 Oil and Natural Gas Industry Control Techniques Guidelines for the 2008 Ozone National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) and for States in the Ozone Transport Region,” 85 Fed. Reg. 72963 (November 16, 2020), for California, Connecticut, New York, Pennsylvania, and Texas by January 2022. 

(d)  The Attorney General may, as appropriate and consistent with applicable law, provide notice of this order and any actions taken pursuant to section 2(a) of this order to any court with jurisdiction over pending litigation related to those agency actions identified pursuant to section (2)(a) of this order, and may, in his discretion, request that the court stay or otherwise dispose of litigation, or seek other appropriate relief consistent with this order, until the completion of the processes described in this order.

(e)  In carrying out the actions directed in this section, heads of agencies shall seek input from the public and stakeholders, including State local, Tribal, and territorial officials, scientists, labor unions, environmental advocates, and environmental justice organizations.

Sec. 3.  Restoring National Monuments.  (a)  The Secretary of the Interior, as appropriate and consistent with applicable law, including the Antiquities Act, 54 U.S.C. 320301 et seq., shall, in consultation with the Attorney General, the Secretaries of Agriculture and Commerce, the Chair of the Council on Environmental Quality, and Tribal governments, conduct a review of the monument boundaries and conditions that were established by Proclamation 9681 of December 4, 2017 (Modifying the Bears Ears National Monument); Proclamation 9682 of December 4, 2017 (Modifying the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument); and Proclamation 10049 of June 5, 2020 (Modifying the Northeast Canyons and Seamounts Marine National Monument), to determine whether restoration of the monument boundaries and conditions that existed as of January 20, 2017, would be appropriate.

(b)  Within 60 days of the date of this order, the Secretary of the Interior shall submit a report to the President summarizing the findings of the review conducted pursuant to subsection (a), which shall include recommendations for such Presidential actions or other actions consistent with law as the Secretary may consider appropriate to carry out the policy set forth in section 1 of this order.

(c)  The Attorney General may, as appropriate and consistent with applicable law, provide notice of this order to any court with jurisdiction over pending litigation related to the Grand Staircase-Escalante, Bears Ears, and Northeast Canyons and Seamounts Marine National Monuments, and may, in his discretion, request that the court stay the litigation or otherwise delay further litigation, or seek other appropriate relief consistent with this order, pending the completion of the actions described in subsection (a) of this section.

Sec. 4.  Arctic Refuge.  (a)  In light of the alleged legal deficiencies underlying the program, including the inadequacy of the environmental review required by the National Environmental Policy Act, the Secretary of the Interior shall, as appropriate and consistent with applicable law, place a temporary moratorium on all activities of the Federal Government relating to the implementation of the Coastal Plain Oil and Gas Leasing Program, as established by the Record of Decision signed August 17, 2020, in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.  The Secretary shall review the program and, as appropriate and consistent with applicable law, conduct a new, comprehensive analysis of the potential environmental impacts of the oil and gas program.

(b)  In Executive Order 13754 of December 9, 2016 (Northern Bering Sea Climate Resilience), and in the Presidential Memorandum of December 20, 2016 (Withdrawal of Certain Portions of the United States Arctic Outer Continental Shelf From Mineral Leasing), President Obama withdrew areas in Arctic waters and the Bering Sea from oil and gas drilling and established the Northern Bering Sea Climate Resilience Area.  Subsequently, the order was revoked and the memorandum was amended in Executive Order 13795 of April 28, 2017 (Implementing an America-First Offshore Energy Strategy).  Pursuant to section 12(a) of the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act, 43 U.S.C. 1341(a), Executive Order 13754 and the Presidential Memorandum of December 20, 2016, are hereby reinstated in their original form, thereby restoring the original withdrawal of certain offshore areas in Arctic waters and the Bering Sea from oil and gas drilling.

(c)  The Attorney General may, as appropriate and consistent with applicable law, provide notice of this order to any court with jurisdiction over pending litigation related to the Coastal Plain Oil and Gas Leasing Program in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge and other related programs, and may, in his discretion, request that the court stay the litigation or otherwise delay further litigation, or seek other appropriate relief consistent with this order, pending the completion of the actions described in subsection (a) of this section.

Sec. 5.  Accounting for the Benefits of Reducing Climate Pollution.  (a)  It is essential that agencies capture the full costs of greenhouse gas emissions as accurately as possible, including by taking global damages into account.  Doing so facilitates sound decision-making, recognizes the breadth of climate impacts, and supports the international leadership of the United States on climate issues.  The “social cost of carbon” (SCC), “social cost of nitrous oxide” (SCN), and “social cost of methane” (SCM) are estimates of the monetized damages associated with incremental increases in greenhouse gas emissions.  They are intended to include changes in net agricultural productivity, human health, property damage from increased flood risk, and the value of ecosystem services.  An accurate social cost is essential for agencies to accurately determine the social benefits of reducing greenhouse gas emissions when conducting cost-benefit analyses of regulatory and other actions.

(b)  There is hereby established an Interagency Working Group on the Social Cost of Greenhouse Gases (the “Working Group”).  The Chair of the Council of Economic Advisers, Director of OMB, and Director of the Office of Science and Technology Policy  shall serve as Co-Chairs of the Working Group. 

(i)    Membership.  The Working Group shall also include the following other officers, or their designees:  the Secretary of the Treasury; the Secretary of the Interior; the Secretary of Agriculture; the Secretary of Commerce; the Secretary of Health and Human Services; the Secretary of Transportation; the Secretary of Energy; the Chair of the Council on Environmental Quality; the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency; the Assistant to the President and National Climate Advisor; and the Assistant to the President for Economic Policy and Director of the National Economic Council.

(ii)   Mission and Work.  The Working Group shall, as appropriate and consistent with applicable law: 

(A)  publish an interim SCC, SCN, and SCM within 30 days of the date of this order, which agencies shall use when monetizing the value of changes in greenhouse gas emissions resulting from regulations and other relevant agency actions until final values are published;

(B)  publish a final SCC, SCN, and SCM by no later than January 2022;

(C)  provide recommendations to the President, by no later than September 1, 2021, regarding areas of decision-making, budgeting, and procurement by the Federal Government where the SCC, SCN, and SCM should be applied; 

(D)  provide recommendations, by no later than June 1, 2022, regarding a process for reviewing, and, as appropriate, updating, the SCC, SCN, and SCM to ensure that these costs are based on the best available economics and science; and

(E)  provide recommendations, to be published with the final SCC, SCN, and SCM under subparagraph (A) if feasible, and in any event by no later than June 1, 2022, to revise methodologies for calculating the SCC, SCN, and SCM, to the extent that current methodologies do not adequately take account of climate risk, environmental justice, and intergenerational equity.

(iii)  Methodology.  In carrying out its activities, the Working Group shall consider the recommendations of the National Academies of Science, Engineering, and Medicine as reported in Valuing Climate Damages: Updating Estimation of the Social Cost of Carbon Dioxide (2017) and other pertinent scientific literature; solicit public comment; engage with the public and stakeholders; seek the advice of ethics experts; and ensure that the SCC, SCN, and SCM reflect the interests of future generations in avoiding threats posed by climate change.

Sec. 6.  Revoking the March 2019 Permit for the Keystone XL Pipeline.  (a)  On March 29, 2019, the President granted to TransCanada Keystone Pipeline, L.P. a Presidential permit (the “Permit”) to construct, connect, operate, and maintain pipeline facilities at the international border of the United States and Canada (the “Keystone XL pipeline”), subject to express conditions and potential revocation in the President’s sole discretion.  The Permit is hereby revoked in accordance with Article 1(1) of the Permit. 

(b)  In 2015, following an exhaustive review, the Department of State and the President determined that approving the proposed Keystone XL pipeline would not serve the U.S. national interest.  That analysis, in addition to concluding that the significance of the proposed pipeline for our energy security and economy is limited, stressed that the United States must prioritize the development of a clean energy economy, which will in turn create good jobs.  The analysis further concluded that approval of the proposed pipeline would undermine U.S. climate leadership by undercutting the credibility and influence of the United States in urging other countries to take ambitious climate action.

(c)  Climate change has had a growing effect on the U.S. economy, with climate-related costs increasing over the last 4 years.  Extreme weather events and other climate-related effects have harmed the health, safety, and security of the American people and have increased the urgency for combatting climate change and accelerating the transition toward a clean energy economy.  The world must be put on a sustainable climate pathway to protect Americans and the domestic economy from harmful climate impacts, and to create well-paying union jobs as part of the climate solution. 

(d)  The Keystone XL pipeline disserves the U.S. national interest.  The United States and the world face a climate crisis.  That crisis must be met with action on a scale and at a speed commensurate with the need to avoid setting the world on a dangerous, potentially catastrophic, climate trajectory.  At home, we will combat the crisis with an ambitious plan to build back better, designed to both reduce harmful emissions and create good clean-energy jobs.  Our domestic efforts must go hand in hand with U.S. diplomatic engagement.  Because most greenhouse gas emissions originate beyond our borders, such engagement is more necessary and urgent than ever.  The United States must be in a position to exercise vigorous climate leadership in order to achieve a significant increase in global climate action and put the world on a sustainable climate pathway.  Leaving the Keystone XL pipeline permit in place would not be consistent with my Administration’s economic and climate imperatives.

Sec. 7.  Other Revocations.  (a)  Executive Order 13766 of January 24, 2017 (Expediting Environmental Reviews and Approvals For High Priority Infrastructure Projects), Executive Order 13778 of February 28, 2017 (Restoring the Rule of Law, Federalism, and Economic Growth by Reviewing the “Waters of the United States” Rule), Executive Order 13783 of March 28, 2017 (Promoting Energy Independence and Economic Growth), Executive Order 13792 of April 26, 2017 (Review of Designations Under the Antiquities Act), Executive Order 13795 of April 28, 2017 (Implementing an America-First Offshore Energy Strategy), Executive Order 13868 of April 10, 2019 (Promoting Energy Infrastructure and Economic Growth), and Executive Order 13927 of June 4, 2020 (Accelerating the Nation’s Economic Recovery from the COVID-19 Emergency by Expediting Infrastructure Investments and Other Activities), are hereby revoked.  Executive Order 13834 of May 17, 2018 (Efficient Federal Operations), is hereby revoked except for sections 6, 7, and 11.

(b)  Executive Order 13807 of August 15, 2017 (Establishing Discipline and Accountability in the Environmental Review and Permitting Process for Infrastructure Projects), is hereby revoked.  The Director of OMB and the Chair of the Council on Environmental Quality shall jointly consider whether to recommend that a replacement order be issued.

(c)  Executive Order 13920 of May 1, 2020 (Securing the United States Bulk-Power System), is hereby suspended for 90 days.  The Secretary of Energy and the Director of OMB shall jointly consider whether to recommend that a replacement order be issued.

(d)  The Presidential Memorandum of April 12, 2018 (Promoting Domestic Manufacturing and Job Creation Policies and Procedures Relating to Implementation of Air Quality Standards), the Presidential Memorandum of October 19, 2018 (Promoting the Reliable Supply and Delivery of Water in the West), and the Presidential Memorandum of February 19, 2020 (Developing and Delivering More Water Supplies in California), are hereby revoked. 

(e)  The Council on Environmental Quality shall rescind its draft guidance entitled, “Draft National Environmental Policy Act Guidance on Consideration of Greenhouse Gas Emissions,” 84 Fed. Reg. 30097 (June 26, 2019) The Council, as appropriate and consistent with applicable law, shall review, revise, and update its final guidance entitled, “Final Guidance for Federal Departments and Agencies on Consideration of Greenhouse Gas Emissions and the Effects of Climate Change in National Environmental Policy Act Reviews,” 81 Fed. Reg. 51866 (August 5, 2016).

(f)  The Director of OMB and the heads of agencies shall promptly take steps to rescind any orders, rules, regulations, guidelines, or policies, or portions thereof, including, if necessary, by proposing such rescissions through notice-and-comment rulemaking, implementing or enforcing the Executive Orders, Presidential Memoranda, and draft guidance identified in this section, as appropriate and consistent with applicable law.

Sec. 8.  General Provisions.  (a)  Nothing in this order shall be construed to impair or otherwise affect:

(i)   the authority granted by law to an executive department or agency, or the head thereof; or

(ii)  the functions of the Director of the Office of Management and Budget relating to budgetary, administrative, or legislative proposals.

(b)  This order shall be implemented in a manner consistent with applicable law and subject to the availability of appropriations.

(c)  This order is not intended to, and does not, create any right or benefit, substantive or procedural, enforceable at law or in equity by any party against the United States, its departments, agencies, or entities, its officers, employees, or agents, or any other person.

JOSEPH R. BIDEN JR.

THE WHITE HOUSE,
January 20, 2021.


Executive Order on Preventing and Combating Discrimination on the Basis of Gender Identity or Sexual Orientation

By the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, it is hereby ordered as follows:

Section 1.  Policy.  Every person should be treated with respect and dignity and should be able to live without fear, no matter who they are or whom they love.  Children should be able to learn without worrying about whether they will be denied access to the restroom, the locker room, or school sports.  Adults should be able to earn a living and pursue a vocation knowing that they will not be fired, demoted, or mistreated because of whom they go home to or because how they dress does not conform to sex-based stereotypes.  People should be able to access healthcare and secure a roof over their heads without being subjected to sex discrimination.  All persons should receive equal treatment under the law, no matter their gender identity or sexual orientation.

These principles are reflected in the Constitution, which promises equal protection of the laws.  These principles are also enshrined in our Nation’s anti-discrimination laws, among them Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, as amended (42 U.S.C. 2000e et seq.).  In Bostock v. Clayton County, 590 U.S. ___ (2020), the Supreme Court held that Title VII’s prohibition on discrimination “because of . . . sex” covers discrimination on the basis of gender identity and sexual orientation.  Under Bostock‘s reasoning, laws that prohibit sex discrimination — including Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, as amended (20 U.S.C. 1681 et seq.), the Fair Housing Act, as amended (42 U.S.C. 3601 et seq.), and section 412 of the Immigration and Nationality Act, as amended (8 U.S.C. 1522), along with their respective implementing regulations — prohibit discrimination on the basis of gender identity or sexual orientation, so long as the laws do not contain sufficient indications to the contrary.

Discrimination on the basis of gender identity or sexual orientation manifests differently for different individuals, and it often overlaps with other forms of prohibited discrimination, including discrimination on the basis of race or disability.  For example, transgender Black Americans face unconscionably high levels of workplace discrimination, homelessness, and violence, including fatal violence.

It is the policy of my Administration to prevent and combat discrimination on the basis of gender identity or sexual orientation, and to fully enforce Title VII and other laws that prohibit discrimination on the basis of gender identity or sexual orientation.  It is also the policy of my Administration to address overlapping forms of discrimination.  

Sec. 2.  Enforcing Prohibitions on Sex Discrimination on the Basis of Gender Identity or Sexual Orientation.  (a)  The head of each agency shall, as soon as practicable and in consultation with the Attorney General, as appropriate, review all existing orders, regulations, guidance documents, policies, programs, or other agency actions (“agency actions”) that:

(i)   were promulgated or are administered by the agency under Title VII or any other statute or regulation that prohibits sex discrimination, including any that relate to the agency’s own compliance with such statutes or regulations; and

(ii)  are or may be inconsistent with the policy set forth in section 1 of this order.

(b)  The head of each agency shall, as soon as practicable and as appropriate and consistent with applicable law, including the Administrative Procedure Act (5 U.S.C. 551 et seq.), consider whether to revise, suspend, or rescind such agency actions, or promulgate new agency actions, as necessary to fully implement statutes that prohibit sex discrimination and the policy set forth in section 1 of this order. 

(c)  The head of each agency shall, as soon as practicable, also consider whether there are additional actions that the agency should take to ensure that it is fully implementing the policy set forth in section 1 of this order.  If an agency takes an action described in this subsection or subsection (b) of this section, it shall seek to ensure that it is accounting for, and taking appropriate steps to combat, overlapping forms of discrimination, such as discrimination on the basis of race or disability.

(d)  Within 100 days of the date of this order, the head of each agency shall develop, in consultation with the Attorney General, as appropriate, a plan to carry out actions that the agency has identified pursuant to subsections (b) and (c) of this section, as appropriate and consistent with applicable law. 

Sec. 3.  Definition.  “Agency” means any authority of the United States that is an “agency” under 44 U.S.C. 3502(1), other than those considered to be independent regulatory agencies, as defined in 44 U.S.C. 3502(5). 

Sec. 4.  General Provisions.  (a)  Nothing in this order shall be construed to impair or otherwise affect:

(i)  the authority granted by law to an executive department or agency, or the head thereof; or

(ii)  the functions of the Director of the Office of Management and Budget relating to budgetary, administrative, or legislative proposals.

(b)  This order shall be implemented consistent with applicable law and subject to the availability of appropriations.

(c)  This order is not intended to, and does not, create any right or benefit, substantive or procedural, enforceable at law or in equity by any party against the United States, its departments, agencies, or entities, its officers, employees, or agents, or any other person.

JOSEPH R. BIDEN JR.

THE WHITE HOUSE,
January 20, 2021.


Executive Order on Ethic Commitments by Executive Branch Personnel

By the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, including section 301 of title 3, United States Code, and sections 3301 and 7301 of title 5, United States Code, it is hereby ordered as follows:

Section 1.  Ethics Pledge.  Every appointee in every executive agency appointed on or after January 20, 2021, shall sign, and upon signing shall be contractually committed to, the following pledge upon becoming an appointee: 

“I recognize that this pledge is part of a broader ethics in government plan designed to restore and maintain public trust in government, and I commit myself to conduct consistent with that plan.  I commit to decision-making on the merits and exclusively in the public interest, without regard to private gain or personal benefit.  I commit to conduct that upholds the independence of law enforcement and precludes improper interference with investigative or prosecutorial decisions of the Department of Justice.  I commit to ethical choices of post-Government employment that do not raise the appearance that I have used my Government service for private gain, including by using confidential information acquired and relationships established for the benefit of future clients.  

“Accordingly, as a condition, and in consideration, of my employment in the United States Government in a position invested with the public trust, I commit myself to the following obligations, which I understand are binding on me and are enforceable under law: 

“1.  Lobbyist Gift Ban.  I will not accept gifts from registered lobbyists or lobbying organizations for the duration of my service as an appointee. 

“2.  Revolving Door Ban — All Appointees Entering Government.  I will not for a period of 2 years from the date of my appointment participate in any particular matter involving specific parties that is directly and substantially related to my former employer or former clients, including regulations and contracts. 

“3.  Revolving Door Ban — Lobbyists and Registered Agents Entering Government.  If I was registered under the Lobbying Disclosure Act, 2 U.S.C. 1601 et seq., or the Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA), 22 U.S.C. 611 et seq., within the 2 years before the date of my appointment, in addition to abiding by the limitations of paragraph 2, I will not for a period of 2 years after the date of my appointment: 

(a)  participate in any particular matter on which I lobbied, or engaged in registrable activity under FARA, within the 2 years before the date of my appointment; 

(b)  participate in the specific issue area in which that particular matter falls; or

(c)  seek or accept employment with any executive agency with respect to which I lobbied, or engaged in registrable activity under FARA, within the 2 years before the date of my appointment. 

“4.  Revolving Door Ban — Appointees Leaving Government.  If, upon my departure from the Government, I am covered by the post-employment restrictions on communicating with employees of my former executive agency set forth in section 207(c) of title 18, United States Code, and its implementing regulations, I agree that I will abide by those restrictions for a period of 2 years following the end of my appointment.  I will abide by these same restrictions with respect to communicating with the senior White House staff.  

“5.  Revolving Door Ban — Senior and Very Senior Appointees Leaving Government.  If, upon my departure from the Government, I am covered by the post-employment restrictions set forth in sections 207(c) or 207(d) of title 18, United States Code, and those sections’ implementing regulations, I agree that, in addition, for a period of 1 year following the end of my appointment, I will not materially assist others in making communications or appearances that I am prohibited from undertaking myself by (a) holding myself out as being available to engage in lobbying activities in support of any such communications or appearances; or (b) engaging in any such lobbying activities. 

“6.  Revolving Door Ban — Appointees Leaving Government to Lobby.  In addition to abiding by the limitations of paragraph 4, I also agree, upon leaving Government service, not to lobby any covered executive branch official or non-career Senior Executive Service appointee, or engage in any activity on behalf of any foreign government or foreign political party which, were it undertaken on January 20, 2021, would require that I register under FARA, for the remainder of the Administration or 2 years following the end of my appointment, whichever is later. 

“7.  Golden Parachute Ban.  I have not accepted and will not accept, including after entering Government, any salary or other cash payment from my former employer the eligibility for and payment of which is limited to individuals accepting a position in the United States Government.  I also have not accepted and will not accept any non-cash benefit from my former employer that is provided in lieu of such a prohibited cash payment.

“8.  Employment Qualification Commitment.  I agree that any hiring or other employment decisions I make will be based on the candidate’s qualifications, competence, and experience. 

“9.  Assent to Enforcement.  I acknowledge that the Executive Order entitled ‘Ethics Commitments by Executive Branch Personnel,’ issued by the President on January 20, 2021, which I have read before signing this document, defines certain of the terms applicable to the foregoing obligations and sets forth the methods for enforcing them.  I expressly accept the provisions of that Executive Order as a part of this agreement and as binding on me.  I understand that the terms of this pledge are in addition to any statutory or other legal restrictions applicable to me by virtue of Federal Government service.” 

Sec. 2.  Definitions.  For purposes of this order and the pledge set forth in section 1 of this order: 

(a)  “Executive agency” shall include each “executive agency” as defined by section 105 of title 5, United States Code, and shall include the Executive Office of the President; provided, however, that “executive agency” shall include the United States Postal Service and Postal Regulatory Commission, but shall exclude the Government Accountability Office.

(b)  “Appointee” shall include every full-time, non-career Presidential or Vice-Presidential appointee, non-career appointee in the Senior Executive Service (or other SES-type system), and appointee to a position that has been excepted from the competitive service by reason of being of a confidential or policymaking character (Schedule C and other positions excepted under comparable criteria) in an executive agency.  It does not include any person appointed as a member of the Senior Foreign Service or solely as a uniformed service commissioned officer. 

(c) “Gift”: 

(i)    shall have the definition set forth in section 2635.203(b) of title 5, Code of Federal Regulations; 

(ii)   shall include gifts that are solicited or accepted indirectly, as defined in section 2635.203(f) of title 5, Code of Federal Regulations; and 

(iii)  shall exclude those items excluded by sections 2635.204(b), (c), (e)(1) and (3), and (j) through (l) of title 5, Code of Federal Regulations. 

(d)  “Covered executive branch official” and “lobbyist” shall have the definitions set forth in section 1602 of title 2, United States Code. 

(e)  “Registered lobbyist or lobbying organization” shall mean a lobbyist or an organization filing a registration pursuant to section 1603(a) of title 2, United States Code, and in the case of an organization filing such a registration, “registered lobbyist” shall include each of the lobbyists identified therein. 

(f)  “Lobby” and “lobbied” shall mean to act or have acted as a registered lobbyist. 

(g)  “Lobbying activities” shall have the definition set forth in section 1602 of title 2, United States Code.

(h)  “Materially assist” means to provide substantive assistance but does not include providing background or general education on a matter of law or policy based upon an individual’s subject matter expertise, nor any conduct or assistance permitted under section 207(j) of title 18, United States Code.  

(i)  “Particular matter” shall have the same meaning as set forth in section 207 of title 18, United States Code, and section 2635.402(b)(3) of title 5, Code of Federal Regulations. 

(j)  “Particular matter involving specific parties” shall have the same meaning as set forth in section 2641.201(h) of title 5, Code of Federal Regulations, except that it shall also include any meeting or other communication relating to the performance of one’s official duties with a former employer or former client, unless the communication applies to a particular matter of general applicability and participation in the meeting or other event is open to all interested parties. 

(k)  “Former employer” is any person for whom the appointee has within the 2 years prior to the date of his or her appointment served as an employee, officer, director, trustee, or general partner, except that “former employer” does not include any executive agency or other entity of the Federal Government, State or local government, the District of Columbia, Native American tribe, any United States territory or possession, or any international organization in which the United States is a member state.  

(l)  “Former client” is any person for whom the appointee served personally as agent, attorney, or consultant within the 2 years prior to the date of his or her appointment, but excluding instances where the service provided was limited to speeches or similar appearances.  It does not include clients of the appointee’s former employer to whom the appointee did not personally provide services. 

(m)  “Directly and substantially related to my former employer or former clients” shall mean matters in which the appointee’s former employer or a former client is a party or represents a party. 

(n)  “Participate” means to participate personally and substantially. 

(o)  “Government official” means any employee of the executive branch. 

(p)  “Administration” means all terms of office of the incumbent President serving at the time of the appointment of an appointee covered by this order. 

(q)  “Pledge” means the ethics pledge set forth in section 1 of this order. 

(r)  “Senior White House staff” means any person appointed by the President to a position under sections 105(a)(2)(A) or (B) of title 3, United States Code, or by the Vice President to a position under sections 106(a)(1)(A) or (B) of title 3. 

(s)  All references to provisions of law and regulations shall refer to such provisions as are in effect on January 20, 2021. 

Sec. 3.  Waiver.  (a)  The Director of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), in consultation with the Counsel to the President, may grant to any current or former appointee a written waiver of any restrictions contained in the pledge signed by such appointee if, and to the extent that, the Director of OMB certifies in writing: 

(i)   that the literal application of the restriction is inconsistent with the purposes of the restriction; or 

(ii)  that it is in the public interest to grant the waiver.  Any such written waiver should reflect the basis for the waiver and, in the case of a waiver of the restrictions set forth in paragraphs 3(b) and (c) of the pledge, a discussion of the findings with respect to the factors set forth in subsection (b) of this section.  

(b)  A waiver shall take effect when the certification is signed by the Director of OMB and shall be made public within 10 days thereafter. 

(c)  The public interest shall include, but not be limited to, exigent circumstances relating to national security, the economy, public health, or the environment.  In determining whether it is in the public interest to grant a waiver of the restrictions contained in paragraphs 3(b) and (c) of the pledge, the responsible official may consider the following factors: 

(i)    the government’s need for the individual’s services, including the existence of special circumstances related to national security, the economy, public health, or the environment; 

(ii)   the uniqueness of the individual’s qualifications to meet the government’s needs; 

(iii)  the scope and nature of the individual’s prior lobbying activities, including whether such activities were de minimis or rendered on behalf of a nonprofit organization; and 

(iv)   the extent to which the purposes of the restriction may be satisfied through other limitations on the individual’s services, such as those required by paragraph 3(a) of the pledge. 

Sec. 4.  Administration.  (a)  The head of every executive agency shall, in consultation with the Director of the Office of Government Ethics, establish such rules or procedures (conforming as nearly as practicable to the agency’s general ethics rules and procedures, including those relating to designated agency ethics officers) as are necessary or appropriate to ensure: 

(i)    that every appointee in the agency signs the pledge upon assuming the appointed office or otherwise becoming an appointee; 

(ii)   that compliance with paragraph 3 of the pledge is addressed in a written ethics agreement with each appointee to whom it applies, which agreement shall also be approved by the Counsel to the President prior to the appointee commencing work; 

(iii)   that spousal employment issues and other conflicts not expressly addressed by the pledge are addressed in ethics agreements with appointees or, where no such agreements are required, through ethics counseling; and 

(iv)   that the agency generally complies with this order. 

(b)  With respect to the Executive Office of the President, the duties set forth in section 4(a) of this order shall be the responsibility of the Counsel to the President. 

(c)  The Director of the Office of Government Ethics shall: 

(i)    ensure that the pledge and a copy of this order are made available for use by agencies in fulfilling their duties under section 4(a) of this order; 

(ii)   in consultation with the Attorney General or the Counsel to the President, when appropriate, assist designated agency ethics officers in providing advice to current or former appointees regarding the application of the pledge; and 

(iii)  in consultation with the Attorney General and the Counsel to the President, adopt such rules or procedures as are necessary or appropriate: 

(A)  to carry out the foregoing responsibilities; 

(B)  to authorize limited exceptions to the lobbyist gift ban for circumstances that do not implicate the purposes of the ban; 

(C)  to make clear that no person shall have violated the lobbyist gift ban if the person properly disposes of a gift as provided by section 2635.206 of title 5, Code of Federal Regulations; 

(D)  to ensure that existing rules and procedures for Government employees engaged in negotiations for future employment with private businesses that are affected by the employees’ official actions do not affect the integrity of the Government’s programs and operations;

(E)  to ensure, in consultation with the Director of the Office of Personnel Management, that the requirement set forth in paragraph 6 of the pledge is honored by every employee of the executive branch; 

(iv)   in consultation with the Director of OMB, report to the President on whether full compliance is being achieved with existing laws and regulations governing executive branch procurement lobbying disclosure.  This report shall include recommendations on steps the executive branch can take to expand, to the fullest extent practicable, disclosure of both executive branch procurement lobbying and of lobbying for Presidential pardons.  These recommendations shall include both immediate actions the executive branch can take and, if necessary, recommendations for legislation; and 

(v)    provide an annual public report on the administration of the pledge and this order. 

(d)  The Director of the Office of Government Ethics shall, in consultation with the Attorney General, the Counsel to the President, and the Director of the Office of Personnel Management, report to the President on steps the executive branch can take to expand to the fullest extent practicable the revolving door ban set forth in paragraph 5 of the pledge to all executive branch employees who are involved in the procurement process such that they may not for 2 years after leaving Government service lobby any Government official regarding a Government contract that was under their official responsibility in the last 2 years of their Government service.  This report shall include both immediate actions the executive branch can take and, if necessary, recommendations for legislation. 

(e)  All pledges signed by appointees, and all waiver certifications with respect thereto, shall be filed with the head of the appointee’s agency for permanent retention in the appointee’s official personnel folder or equivalent folder. 

Sec. 5.  Enforcement.  (a)  The contractual, fiduciary, and ethical commitments in the pledge provided for herein are solely enforceable by the United States pursuant to this section by any legally available means, including debarment proceedings within any affected executive agency or judicial civil proceedings for declaratory, injunctive, or monetary relief. 

(b)  Any former appointee who is determined, after notice and hearing, by the duly designated authority within any agency, to have violated his or her pledge may be barred from lobbying any officer or employee of that agency for up to 5 years in addition to the time period covered by the pledge.  The head of every executive agency shall, in consultation with the Director of the Office of Government Ethics, establish procedures to implement this subsection, which procedures shall include (but not be limited to) providing for fact-finding and investigation of possible violations of this order and for referrals to the Attorney General for consideration pursuant to subsection (c) of this order. 

(c)  The Attorney General is authorized:

(i)   upon receiving information regarding the possible breach of any commitment in a signed pledge, to request any appropriate Federal investigative authority to conduct such investigations as may be appropriate; and 

(ii)  upon determining that there is a reasonable basis to believe that a breach of a commitment has occurred or will occur or continue, if not enjoined, to commence a civil action against the former employee in any United States District Court with jurisdiction to consider the matter. 

(d)  In any such civil action, the Attorney General is authorized to request any and all relief authorized by law, including but not limited to: 

(i)   such temporary restraining orders and preliminary and permanent injunctions as may be appropriate to restrain future, recurring, or continuing conduct by the former employee in breach of the commitments in the pledge he or she signed; and 

(ii)  establishment of a constructive trust for the benefit of the United States, requiring an accounting and payment to the United States Treasury of all money and other things of value received by, or payable to, the former employee arising out of any breach or attempted breach of the pledge signed by the former employee. 

Sec. 6.  General Provisions.  (a)  If any provision of this order or the application of such provision is held to be invalid, the remainder of this order and other dissimilar applications of such provision shall not be affected. 

(b)  Nothing in this order shall be construed to impair or otherwise affect: 

(i)   the authority granted by law to an executive department or agency, or the head thereof; or 

(ii)  the functions of the Director of the Office of Management and Budget relating to budgetary, administrative, or legislative proposals. 

(c)  This order shall be implemented consistent with applicable law and subject to the availability of appropriations. 

(d)  This order is not intended to, and does not, create any right or benefit, substantive or procedural, enforceable at law or in equity by any party against the United States, its departments, agencies, or entities, its officers, employees, or agents, or any other person. 

JOSEPH R. BIDEN JR.

THE WHITE HOUSE,
January 20, 2021.


Proclamation on the Termination Of Emergency With Respect To The Southern Border Of The United States And Redirection Of Funds Diverted To Border Wall Construction 

BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA

A PROCLAMATION

Like every nation, the United States has a right and a duty to secure its borders and protect its people against threats.  But building a massive wall that spans the entire southern border is not a serious policy solution.  It is a waste of money that diverts attention from genuine threats to our homeland security.  My Administration is committed to ensuring that the United States has a comprehensive and humane immigration system that operates consistently with our Nation’s values.  In furtherance of that commitment, I have determined that the declaration of a national emergency at our southern border in Proclamation 9844 of February 15, 2019 (Declaring a National Emergency Concerning the Southern Border of the United States), was unwarranted.  It shall be the policy of my Administration that no more American taxpayer dollars be diverted to construct a border wall.  I am also directing a careful review of all resources appropriated or redirected to construct a southern border wall.  

NOW, THEREFORE, I, JOSEPH R. BIDEN JR., President of the United States of America, by the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, including section 202 of the National Emergencies Act (50 U.S.C. 1601 et seq.), hereby declare that the national emergency declared by Proclamation 9844, and continued on February 13, 2020 (85 Fed. Reg. 8715), and January 15, 2021, is terminated and that the authorities invoked in that proclamation will no longer be used to construct a wall at the southern border.  I hereby further direct as follows:

Section 1.  Pause in Construction and Obligation of Funds.  (a)  The Secretary of Defense and the Secretary of Homeland Security, in consultation with the Director of the Office of Management and Budget, shall direct the appropriate officials within their respective departments to:

(i)    pause work on each construction project on the southern border wall, to the extent permitted by law, as soon as possible but in no case later than seven days from the date of this proclamation, to permit: 

(A)  assessment of the legality of the funding and contracting methods used to construct the wall;

(B)  assessment of the administrative and contractual consequences of ceasing each wall construction project; and

(C)  completion and implementation of the plan developed in accordance with section 2 of this proclamation; 

(ii)   pause immediately the obligation of funds related to construction of the southern border wall, to the extent permitted by law; and

(iii)  compile detailed information on all southern border wall construction contracts, the completion status of each wall construction project, and the funds used for wall construction since February 15, 2019, including directly appropriated funds and funds drawn from the Treasury Forfeiture Fund (31 U.S.C. 9705(g)(4)(B)), the Department of Defense Drug Interdiction and Counter-Drug Activities account (10 U.S.C. 284), and the Department of Defense Military Construction account (pursuant to the emergency authorities in 10 U.S.C. 2808(a) and 33 U.S.C. 2293(a)). 

(b)  The pause directed in subsection (a)(i) of this section shall apply to wall projects funded by redirected funds as well as wall projects funded by direct appropriations.  The Secretary of Defense and the Secretary of Homeland Security may make an exception to the pause, however, for urgent measures needed to avert immediate physical dangers or where an exception is required to ensure that funds appropriated by the Congress fulfill their intended purpose. 

Sec. 2.  Plan for Redirecting Funding and Repurposing Contracts.  The Secretary of Defense and the Secretary of Homeland Security, in coordination with the Secretary of the Treasury, the Attorney General, the Director of the Office of Management and Budget, and the heads of any other appropriate executive departments and agencies, and in consultation with the Assistant to the President for National Security Affairs, shall develop a plan for the redirection of funds concerning the southern border wall, as appropriate and consistent with applicable law.  The process of developing the plan shall include consideration of terminating or repurposing contracts with private contractors engaged in wall construction, while providing for the expenditure of any funds that the Congress expressly appropriated for wall construction, consistent with their appropriated purpose.  The plan shall be developed within 60 days from the date of this proclamation.  After the plan is developed, the Secretary of Defense and the Secretary of Homeland Security shall take all appropriate steps to resume, modify, or terminate projects and to otherwise implement the plan.

Sec. 3.  Definition.  Consistent with Executive Order 13767 of January 25, 2017 (Border Security and Immigration Enforcement Improvements), for the purposes of this proclamation, “wall” means a contiguous, physical wall or other similarly secure, contiguous, and impassable physical barrier.

Sec. 4.  General Provisions.  (a)  Nothing in this proclamation shall be construed to impair or otherwise affect:

(i)   the authority granted by law to an executive department or agency, or the head thereof; or

(ii)  the functions of the Director of the Office of Management and Budget relating to budgetary, administrative, or legislative proposals.

(b)  This proclamation shall be implemented consistent with applicable law and subject to the availability of appropriations.

(c)  This proclamation is not intended to, and does not, create any right or benefit, substantive or procedural, enforceable at law or in equity by any party against the United States, its departments, agencies, or entities, its officers, employees, or agents, or any other person.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this twentieth day of January, in the year of our Lord two thousand twenty-one, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and forty-fifth.

JOSEPH R. BIDEN JR.


Pausing Federal Student Loan Payments

At the request of President Biden, the Acting Secretary of Education will extend the pause on federal student loan payments and collections and keep the interest rate at 0%. Too many Americans are struggling to pay for basic necessities and to provide for their families. They should not be forced to choose between paying their student loans and putting food on the table. 


Reinstating Deferred Enforced Departure for Liberians

MEMORANDUM FOR THE SECRETARY OF STATE THE SECRETARY OF HOMELAND SECURITY

SUBJECT: Reinstating Deferred Enforced Departure for Liberians

Since 1991, the United States has provided safe haven for Liberians who were forced to flee their country as a result of armed conflict and widespread civil strife, in part through the grant of Temporary Protected Status (TPS).  The armed conflict ended in 2003, and TPS for affected Liberian nationals ended effective October 1, 2007.  President Bush then deferred the enforced departure of those Liberians originally granted TPS.  President Obama, in successive memoranda, extended that grant of Deferred Enforced Departure (DED) to March 31, 2018.  President Trump then determined that conditions in Liberia did not warrant a further extension of DED, but that the foreign policy interests of the United States warranted affording an orderly transition period for Liberian DED beneficiaries.  President Trump later extended that DED transition period through March 30, 2020. 

In December 2019, the Congress enacted the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2020 (Public Law 116-92) (NDAA), which included, as section 7611, the Liberian Refugee Immigration Fairness (LRIF) provision.  The LRIF provision, with limited exceptions, makes Liberians who have been continuously present in the United States since November 20, 2014, as well as their spouses and children, eligible for adjustment of status to that of United States lawful permanent resident (LPR).  The NDAA gave eligible Liberian nationals until December 20, 2020, to apply for this adjustment of status.  After the enactment of the LRIF provision, President Trump further extended the DED transition period through January 10, 2021, to ensure that DED beneficiaries would continue to be eligible for employment authorization during the LRIF application period. 

The LRIF application process was hampered by a slow launch, cumbersome procedures, and delays in adjudication.  Recognizing these difficulties, the Congress enacted a 1-year extension to the application period in section 901 of the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021 (Public Law 116-260).  That legislation, however, did not provide for continued employment authorization past January 10, 2021, the expiration of the most recent DED transition period. 

There are compelling foreign policy reasons to reinstate DED for an additional period for those Liberians presently residing in the United States who were under a grant of DED as of January 10, 2021.  Providing work authorization to these Liberians, for whom we have long authorized TPS or DED in the United States, while they initiate and complete the LRIF status-adjustment process, honors the historic close relationship between the United States and Liberia and is in the foreign policy interests of the United States.  I urge all Liberian DED beneficiaries to apply promptly for adjustment of status, and I direct the Secretary of Homeland Security to review the LRIF application procedures administered by United States Citizenship and Immigration Services to ensure that they facilitate ease of application and timely adjudication.

Pursuant to my constitutional authority to conduct the foreign relations of the United States, I have determined that it is in the foreign policy interests of the United States to defer through June 30, 2022, the removal of any Liberian national, or person without nationality who last habitually resided in Liberia, who is present in the United States and who was under a grant of DED as of January 10, 2021.  I have also determined that any Liberian national, or person without nationality who last habitually resided in Liberia, who is present in the United States and who was under a grant of DED as of January 10, 2021, should have continued employment authorization through June 30, 2022.

The Secretary of Homeland Security shall promptly direct the appropriate officials to make provision, by means of a notice published in the Federal Register, for immediate allowance of employment authorization for those Liberians who held appropriate DED-related employment authorization documents as of January 10, 2021.  The Secretary shall also provide for the prompt issuance of new or replacement documents in appropriate cases. 

This grant of DED and continued employment authorization shall apply to any Liberian DED beneficiary as of January 10, 2021, but shall not apply to such persons in the following categories:

(1)  Individuals who would be ineligible for TPS for the reasons provided in section 244(c)(2)(B) of the Immigration and Nationality Act, 8 U.S.C. 1254a(c)(2)(B);

(2)  Individuals who sought or seek LPR status under the LRIF provision but whose applications have been or are denied by the Secretary of Homeland Security;

(3)  Individuals whose removal the Secretary of Homeland Security determines is in the interest of the United States, subject to the LRIF provision;

(4)  Individuals whose presence or activities in the United States the Secretary of State has reasonable grounds to believe would have potentially serious adverse foreign policy consequences for the United States;

(5)  Individuals who have voluntarily returned to Liberia or their country of last habitual residence outside the United States for an aggregate period of 180 days or more, as specified in subsection (c)(2) of the LRIF provision;

(6)  Individuals who were deported, excluded, or removed prior to the date of this memorandum; or

(7)  Individuals who are subject to extradition.

Accordingly, I hereby direct the Secretary of Homeland Security to take the necessary steps to implement for eligible Liberians: 

(1)  a deferral of enforced departure from the United States through June 30, 2022, effective immediately; and

(2)  authorization for employment valid through June 30, 2022.

The Secretary of Homeland Security is authorized and directed to publish this memorandum in the Federal Register.

JOSEPH R. BIDEN JR.


Preserving and Fortifying Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA)

MEMORANDUM FOR THE ATTORNEY GENERAL THE SECRETARY OF HOMELAND SECURITY

SUBJECT: Preserving and Fortifying Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA)

By the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the laws of the United States, it is hereby ordered as follows:

Section 1.  Policy.  In 2012, during the Obama-Biden Administration, the Secretary of Homeland Security issued a memorandum outlining how, in the exercise of prosecutorial discretion, the Department of Homeland Security should enforce the Nation’s immigration laws against certain young people.  This memorandum, known as the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) guidance, deferred the removal of certain undocumented immigrants who were brought to the United States as children, have obeyed the law, and stayed in school or enlisted in the military.  DACA and associated regulations permit eligible individuals who pass a background check to request temporary relief from removal and to apply for temporary work permits.  DACA reflects a judgment that these immigrants should not be a priority for removal based on humanitarian concerns and other considerations, and that work authorization will enable them to support themselves and their families, and to contribute to our economy, while they remain.

Sec. 2.  Preserving and Fortifying DACA.  The Secretary of Homeland Security, in consultation with the Attorney General, shall take all actions he deems appropriate, consistent with applicable law, to preserve and fortify DACA. 

Sec. 3.  General Provisions.  (a)  Nothing in this memorandum shall be construed to impair or otherwise affect:

(i)   the authority granted by law to an executive department, agency, or the head thereof; or

(ii)  the functions of the Director of the Office of Management and Budget relating to budgetary, administrative, or legislative proposals.

(b)  This memorandum shall be implemented consistent with applicable law.

(c)  This memorandum is not intended to, and does not, create any right or benefit, substantive or procedural, enforceable at law or in equity by any party against the United States, its departments, agencies, or entities, its officers, employees, or agents, or any other person.

(d)  The Secretary of Homeland Security is authorized and directed to publish this memorandum in the Federal Register.

JOSEPH R. BIDEN JR.


Kara Danvers

Kara Danvers is a Pulitzer Prize winning journalist from National City. Her coverage ranges over a variety of topics but her true talent for finding a story that matters is what makes her special. She's most recognized for her work with CatCo.

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