Supplemental Standards of Ethical Conduct for Employees of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission

Summary

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, with the concurrence of the Office of Government Ethics (OGE), is issuing a regulation for employees of EEOC that supplements the Standards of Ethical Conduct for Employees of the Executive Branch issued by OGE. The EEOC is also repealing its existing agency standards of conduct regulations that have been superseded by OGE's Standards of Ethical Conduct, OGE's financial disclosure regulation and this interim rule.

Full text

SUMMARY: The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, with the 
concurrence of the Office of Government Ethics (OGE), is issuing a 
regulation for employees of EEOC that supplements the Standards of 
Ethical Conduct for Employees of the Executive Branch issued by OGE. 
The EEOC is also repealing its existing agency standards of conduct 
regulations that have been superseded by OGE's Standards of Ethical 
Conduct, OGE's financial disclosure regulation and this interim rule.

DATES: This rule is effective on February 26, 1996. Written comments on 
the interim rule must be received on or before April 26, 1996.

ADDRESSES: Comments should be submitted to the Office of the Executive 
Secretariat, Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, 1801 L Street, 
NW., Washington, DC 20507. Copies of comments submitted by the public 
will be available for review at the Commission's Library, room 6502, 
1801 L Street, NW., Washington, DC between the hours of 9:30 a.m. and 
5:00 p.m.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:
Nicholas M. Inzeo, Associate Legal Counsel, Thomas J. Schlageter, 
Assistant Legal Counsel, or Kathleen Oram, Senior Attorney, at (202) 
663-4669 or TDD (202) 663-7026. This notice is also available in the 
following formats: large print, braille, audio tape and electronic file 
on computer disk. Requests for this notice in an alternative format 
should be made to EEOC's Publications Center at 1-800-669-3362.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: 

I. Background

    On August 7, 1992, the Office of Government Ethics published the 
Standards of Ethical Conduct for Employees of the Executive Branch 
(Standards) for codification at 5 CFR part 2635. See 57 FR 35006-35067, 
as corrected at 57 FR 48557 and 57 FR 52583 with an additional grace 
period extension at 59 FR 4779-4780. The Standards, effective February 
3, 1993, set uniform ethical conduct standards applicable to all 
executive branch personnel.
    Section 2635.105 of the uniform Standards authorizes agencies, with 
the concurrence of OGE, to publish agency-specific supplemental 
regulations that are necessary to properly implement their respective 
ethics programs. The Commission, with OGE's concurrence, has determined 
that the following interim supplemental rule is necessary for 
successful implementation of its ethics program.

II. Analysis of the Regulations

Section 7201.101 General

    Section 7201.101 explains that the regulations apply to all 
employees of the EEOC, including members of the Commission and the 
General Counsel, and that they supplement the OGE Standards.

Section 7201.102 Prohibited Outside Employment

    5 CFR 2635.802 provides that an employee shall not engage in 
outside employment if it is prohibited by agency supplemental 
regulation. The Commission is issuing Sec. 7201.102 as a supplemental 
regulation. This section details three categories of prohibited outside 
employment for EEOC employees. First, the section prohibits EEOC 
employees from engaging in any outside employment with persons 
currently and substantially affected by the employee's performance of 
his or her official duties because the person is a party or 
representative of a party to a particular matter involving specific 
parties. This provision prohibits employees from working for a charging 
party, respondent, or attorney representing either. Second, the section 
prohibits EEOC employees from receiving any compensation for 
representational services or the rendering of advice or analysis 
regarding any equal employment law or its application. Finally, the 
section prohibits EEOC employees from engaging in outside employment 
involving any particular matter pending at EEOC or any equal employment 
opportunity case in which EEOC or the Federal government is a party. 
This final prohibition is not intended to prevent EEOC employees from 
providing behind-the-scenes assistance (e.g., conducting legal 
research, drafting documents, giving advice or other non-advocacy work) 
to immediate family members in matters pending at EEOC or any equal 
employment opportunity case in which EEOC or the Federal government is 
a party. The Commission has determined that these three prohibitions, 
which are similar to prohibitions that have applied to EEOC employees 
under superseded 29 CFR 1600.735-204, will help to ensure that 
reasonable persons will not questions the impartiality and objectivity 
of EEOC's employees.
    While the second and third prohibitions of this section do no apply 
to special Government employees, the prior approval section discussed 
below does apply to them. This acknowledges the transitory or part-time 
nature of the service special Government employees provide EEOC, but 
also enables EEOC to carefully review all outside employment interests 
of special Government employees on a case-by-case basis to ensure that 
violations of applicable statutes and regulations do not occur.

Section 7201.103 Prior Approval for Outside Employment

    Under 5 CFR 2635.803, agencies may, by supplemental regulation, 
require employees to obtain prior approval before engaging in outside 
employment or activities. Under superseded 29 CFR 1600.735-204, the 
Commission has had a requirement for prior approval of compensated and 
other outside employment activities. Because this requirement has 
helped to ensure that employees' outside activities conform to applicable statutes and regulations, the Commission will continue to 
require prior approval. Section 7201.103 provides that an EEOC 
employee, including a special Government employee, must obtain advance 
written approval from his or her Deputy Ethics Counselor or designee 
before engaging in any outside employment. In addition to that 
approval, employees must also obtain prior written approval from the 
Designated Agency Ethics Official or designee to engage in compensated 
outside employment, the uncompensated practice of law or uncompensated 
outside employment that involves representational services or the 
rendering of advice or analysis regarding any equal employment law, or 
to serve as an officer or director of an organization whose activities 
are devoted substantially to equal employment opportunity matters.
    ``Employment'' is broadly defined in Sec. 7201.103(d) to cover any 
form of non-Federal employment or business relationship involving the 
provision of personal services, including writing when done under an 
arrangement with another person for production or publication of the 
written product. It does not, however, include participation in the 
activities of nonprofit charitable, religious, professional, social, 
fraternal, educational, recreational, public service or civic 
organizations, unless such activities involve the provision of 
professional services or advice, are for compensation other than 
reimbursement of expenses, or the organization's activities are devoted 
substantially to matters relating to equal employment law and the 
employee will serve as officer or director of the organization.
    Section 7201.103(c) provides that approval will not be granted if 
the outside employment is expected to involve conduct inconsistent with 
or prohibited by any statute or federal regulation, including 5 CFR 
part 2635 and these supplemental regulations.

III. Repeal and Redesignation of Portions of the EEOC Conduct 
Regulations and Related Modifications

    The Commission is replacing its existing standards of conduct 
regulations at 29 CFR part 1600 and replacing them with a cross-
reference to 5 CFR parts 2634 and 2635 and to the supplemental 
regulations at 5 CFR part 7201 adopted by this interim rule. With the 
exception of subpart E and the material that was preserved pending the 
issuance of this interim rule by the notes following 5 CFR 2635.403(a) 
and 2635.803, part 1600 was superseded by OGE's two executive branch-
wide regulations, the Standards of Ethical Conduct for Employees of the 
Executive Branch, 5 CFR part 2635, and Financial Disclosure, Qualified 
Trusts, and Certificates of Divestiture For Executive Branch Employees, 
5 CFR part 2634. See 57 FR 11800-1130, as amended at 57 FR 21854-21855 
and 57 FR 62605. EEOC is redesignating subpart E of part 1600, 
Procedures for the Collection of Debts by Salary Offset, as subpart A 
of 29 CFR part 1650.

IV. Matters of Regulatory Procedure

    The Commission has determined that these rules relate solely to 
agency organization, procedure and practice. In addition, similar rules 
have been applicable to Commission employees under EEOC's superseded 
standards of conduct contained at 29 CFR part 1600. Therefore, the 
requirements of the Administrative Procedure Act are not applicable. 
EEOC is publishing its supplemental ethics regulation as an interim 
rule to effect a smooth transition from its standards of conduct to 
OGE's Government-wide standards of conduct regulation.
    In promulgating this interim rule, the Commission has adhered to 
the regulatory philosophy and the applicable principles of regulation 
set forth in section 1 of Executive Order 12866, Regulatory Planning 
and Review. This regulation has not been reviewed by the Office of 
Management and Budget under that Executive order as it deals with 
agency organization, management, and personnel matters and is not, in 
any event, deemed ``significant'' thereunder. As required by the 
Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. chapter 6), it is hereby certified 
that this interim rule will not have a significant impact on small 
business entities. In addition, the Commission has determined that this 
interim rule does not impose any information collection requirements as 
defined by the Paperwork Reduction Act, 44 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.

List of Subjects

5 CFR Part 7201

    Conflict of interests, Government employees.

29 CFR Part 1600

    Conflict of interests, Government employees.

29 CFR Part 1650

    Debt collection.

    Dated at Washington, DC, this 8th day of February 1996.

    For the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.
Gilbert F. Casellas,
Chairman.
    Approved: February 16, 1996.
Stephen D. Potts,
Director, Office of Government Ethics.

    For the reasons set forth in the preamble, the Equal Employment 
Opportunity Commission, with the concurrence of the Office of 
Government Ethics, is amending title 5 of the Code of Federal 
Regulations and title 29, chapter XIV, of the Code of Federal 
Regulations as follows:

TITLE 5--[AMENDED]

    1. A new chapter LXII, consisting of part 7201, is added to Title 5 
of the Code of Federal Regulations to read as follows:

5 CFR Chapter LXII--Equal Employment Opportunity Commission

PART 7201--SUPPLEMENTAL STANDARDS OF ETHICAL CONDUCT FOR EMPLOYEES 
OF THE EQUAL EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITY COMMISSION

Sec.
7201.101  General.
7201.102  Prohibited outside employment.
7201.103  Prior approval for outside employment.

    Authority:  5 U.S.C. 7301; 5 U.S.C. App. (Ethics in Government 
Act of 1978); E.O. 12674, 54 FR 15159, 3 CFR, 1989 Comp., p. 215, as 
modified by E.O. 12731, 55 FR 42547, 3 CFR, 1990 Comp., p. 306; 5 
CFR 2635.105, 2635.403(a), 2635.802 and 2635.803.


Sec. 7201.101  General.

    In accordance with 5 CFR 2635.105, the regulations in this part 
apply to all employees of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission 
(EEOC), including members of the Commission and the General Counsel, 
and supplement the Standards of Ethical Conduct for Employees of the 
Executive Branch contained in 5 CFR part 2635.


Sec. 7201.102  Prohibited outside employment.

    (a) No employee of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission may 
engage in outside employment with a person who is currently and 
substantially affected by the employee's performance of his or her 
official duties because the person is a party or representative of a 
party to a particular matter involving specific parties.
    (b) No employee of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, 
other than a special Government employee, may receive compensation for 
representational services, or the rendering of advice or analysis, regarding any equal employment law or its application.
    (c) No employee of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, 
other than a special Government employee, may engage in outside 
employment involving a particular matter pending at EEOC or an equal 
employment opportunity matter in which EEOC or the Federal Government 
is a party. An employee may, however, provide behind-the-scenes 
assistance to immediate family members in matters pending at EEOC or 
equal employment opportunity matters in which EEOC or the Federal 
government is a party.


Sec. 7201.103  Prior approval for outside employment.

    (a) Before engaging in any outside employment, with or without 
compensation, an employee of the Equal Employment Opportunity 
Commission must obtain written approval from his or her Deputy Ethics 
Counselor or designee.
    (b) In addition to approval under paragraph (a) of this section, an 
employee must obtain prior written approval from the Designated Agency 
Ethics Official or designee to engage in:
    (1) Compensated outside employment;
    (2) The uncompensated practice of law; or
    (3) Uncompensated outside employment that involves representation 
or the rendering of advice or analysis regarding any equal employment 
law, or serving as an officer or director of an organization whose 
activities are devoted substantially to equal employment opportunity 
matters.
    (c) Approval will not be granted if the outside employment is 
expected to involve conduct inconsistent with or prohibited by a 
statute or Federal regulation, including 5 CFR part 2635 and this part.
    (d) For purposes of this section, ``employment'' means any form of 
non-Federal employment or business relationship involving the provision 
of personal services by the employee. It includes, but is not limited 
to personal services as an officer, director, employee, agent, 
attorney, consultant, contractor, general partner, trustee, teacher or 
speaker. It includes writing when done under an arrangement with 
another person for production or publication of the written product. It 
does not, however, include participation in the activities of a 
nonprofit charitable, religious, professional, social, fraternal, 
educational, recreational, public service or civic organization unless:
    (1) The employee's participation involves the provision of 
professional services or advice;
    (2) The employee will receive compensation other than reimbursement 
of expenses; or
    (3) The organization's activities are devoted substantially to 
matters relating to equal employment law and the employee will serve as 
officer or director of the organization.

29 CFR CHAPTER XIV--EQUAL EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITY COMMISSION

PART 1600--[AMENDED]

    2. The authority citation for part 1600 is revised to read as 
follows:

    Authority: 5 U.S.C. 7301.

    3. Subparts A through D, consisting of Secs. 1600.735-101 through 
1600.735-106, 1600.735-201 through 1600.735-206, 1600.735-301, and 
1600.735-401 through 1600.735-406, respectively, and appendix A to part 
1600 are removed.
    4. A new Sec. 1600.101 is added to read as follows:


Sec. 1600.101   Cross-reference to employee ethical conduct standards 
and financial disclosure regulations.

    Employees of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) are 
subject to the executive branch-wide Standards of Ethical Conduct at 5 
CFR part 2635, the EEOC regulation at 5 CFR part 7201, which 
supplements the executive branch-wide standards, and the executive 
branch-wide financial disclosure regulations at 5 CFR part 2634.

PART 1650--[AMENDED]

    1. The authority citation for part 1650 is revised to read as 
follows:

    Authority: 5 U.S.C. 5514; 31 U.S.C. 3720A; 5 CFR 550.1101.

    2. Subpart E of part 1600 is redesignated as new subpart A in part 
1650 as indicated in the table below:

------------------------------------------------------------------------
                        Old section                          New section
------------------------------------------------------------------------
1600.735-501...............................................     1650.101
1600.735-502...............................................     1650.102
1600.735-503...............................................     1650.103
1600.735-504...............................................     1650.104
1600.735-505...............................................     1650.105
1600.735-506...............................................     1650.106
1600.735-507...............................................     1650.107
1600.735-508...............................................     1650.108
1600.735-509...............................................     1650.109
1600.735-510...............................................     1650.110
1600.735-511...............................................     1650.111
1600.735-512...............................................     1650.112
1600.735-513...............................................     1650.113
1600.735-514...............................................     1650.114
1600.735-515...............................................     1650.115
1600.735-516...............................................     1650.116
1600.735-517...............................................     1650.117
1600.735-518...............................................     1650.118
1600.735-519...............................................     1650.119
------------------------------------------------------------------------


[FR Doc. 96-4115 Filed 2-23-96; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 6750-06-M  

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