SYSTEM OF RECORDS NOTICES (SORNs)
GOVERNMENT WIDE NOTICES
Office of Government Ethics
Executive Branch Personnel Public Financial Disclosure Reports and Other Name-Retrieved Ethics Program Records (January 22, 2003, 68 FR 3097; correction published May 8, 2003, 68 FR 24722).
Office of Government Ethics, Suite 500, 1201 New York Avenue, NW., Washington, DC 20005-3917, and designated agency ethics offices.
CATEGORIES OF INDIVIDUALS COVERED BY THE SYSTEM:
This system contains records on: The President, Vice President, and candidates for those offices; officers and employees including special Government employees, whose positions are classified above GS-15 of the General Schedule or at an equivalent rate of basic pay equal to or greater than 120% of the minimum rate of basic pay for GS-15; officers or employees in a position determined by the Director of the Office of Government Ethics to be of equal classification to GS-15 or above; Administrative Law Judges; excepted service employees in positions that are of a confidential or policymaking nature unless an employee or group of employees are exempted by the Director of the Office of Government Ethics; members of a uniformed service whose pay grade is at or in excess of O-7 under section 201 of title 37, United States Code; the Postmaster General, the Deputy Postmaster General, Governor of the Board of Governors of the U.S. Postal Service and each officer or employee of the U.S. Postal Service or Postal Rate Commission whose basic rate of pay is equal to or greater than 120% of the minimum rate of basic pay for GS-15; the Director of the Office of Government Ethics and each agency's primary designated agency ethics official; any civilian employee employed in the Executive Office of the President (other than a special Government employee) who holds a commission of appointment from the President; and nominees for positions requiring Senate confirmation. This system includes both former and current employees in these categories who have filed financial disclosure statements under the requirements of the Ethics in Government Act of 1978, as amended, or who otherwise come under the requirements of the Ethics Act. This system also contains information that is necessary for administering all provisions of the Ethics in Government Act of 1978 and the Ethics Reform Act of 1989 (Pub. L. 101-194), as amended, and E.O. 12674 as modified on any current or former officer or employee of the executive branch.
CATEGORIES OF RECORDS IN THE SYSTEM:
This system of records contains: Financial information such as salary, dividends, retirement benefits, interests in property, deposits in a bank and other financial institutions; information on gifts received; information on certain liabilities; information about positions as an officer, director, trustee, general partner, proprietor, representative, employee, or consultant of any corporation, company, firm, partnership, or other business, non-profit organization, labor organization, or educational institution; information about non-Government employment agreements, such as leaves of absence to accept Federal service, continuation of payments by a non-Federal employer; and information about assets placed in trust pending disposal. This system also includes other documents developed or information and material received by the Director of the Office of Government Ethics, or agency ethics officials in administering the Ethics on Government Act of 1978 or the Ethics Reform Act of 1989, as amended, which are retrieved by name or other personal identifier. Such other documents or information may include, but will not be limited to: ethics agreements, documentation of waivers issued to an officer or employee by an agency pursuant to section 208(b)(1) or section 208(b)(3) of title 18, U.S.C.; certificates of divestiture issued by the President or by the Director of OGE pursuant to section 502 of the Ethics Reform Act of 1989; information necessary for the rendering of ethics counseling, advice or formal advisory opinions, or the resolution of complaints; the actual opinions issued; and records of referrals and consultations regarding current and former employee's who are or have been the subject of conflicts of interest or standards of conduct inquiries or determinations, or employees who are alleged to have violated department, agency or Federal ethics statutes, rules, regulations or Executive orders. Such information may include correspondence, documents or material concerning an individual's conduct, reports of investigations with related exhibits, statements, affidavits or other records obtained during an inquiry. These documents may include information related to personal and family financial and other business interests, positions held outside the Government and acceptance of gifts. The records may also contain reports of action taken by the agency, decisions and reports on legal or disciplinary action resulting from any referred administrative action or prosecution.
AUTHORITY FOR MAINTENANCE OF THE SYSTEM:
5 U.S.C. 7301, 7351, 7353; 5 U.S.C. App. (Ethics in Government Act of 1978); 31 U.S.C. 1353; E.O. 12674 (as modified by E.O. 12731).
All records are maintained in accordance with the requirements of the Ethics in Government Act of 1978 and the Ethics Reform Act of 1989, as amended, and E.O. 12674 as modified, and OGE and agency regulations there under. These requirements include the filing of financial status reports, reports concerning certain agreements between the covered individual and any prior private sector employer, ethics agreements, and the preservation of waivers issued to an officer or employee pursuant to section 208 of title 18 and certificates of divestiture issued pursuant to section 502 of the Ethics Reform Act. Such statements and related records are required to assure compliance with these acts and to preserve and promote the integrity of public officials and institutions. The requirements also include the possession or maintenance of information being researched or prepared for referral by ethics officials concerning employees or former employees of the Federal Government who are the subject of complaints of misconduct or alleged violations of ethics laws. These complaints may be referred to the Office of the Inspector General of the agency where the employee is or was employed or to the Department of Justice.
ROUTINE USES OF RECORDS MAINTAINED IN THE SYSTEM, INCLUDING CATEGORIES OF USERS AND THE PURPOSES OF SUCH USES:
These records and information in these records may be used:
- To disclose the information furnished by the reporting official, in accordance with provisions of section 105 of the Ethics in Government Act of 1978, as amended, to any requesting person.
- To disclose, in accordance with section 105 of the Ethics in Government Act, as amended, and subject to the limitations contained in section 208(d)(1) of title 18, U.S.C., any determination granting an exemption pursuant to 208(b)(1) or 208(b)(3) of title 18, U.S.C., to any requesting person.
- To disclose pertinent information to the appropriate Federal, State, or local agency responsible for investigating, prosecuting, enforcing, or implementing a statute, rule, regulation, or order, where the disclosing agency becomes aware of an indication of a violation or potential violation of civil or criminal law or regulation.
- To disclose information to another Federal agency, to a court, or a party in litigation before a court or in an administrative proceeding being conducted by a Federal agency, either when the Government is a party to a judicial or administrative proceeding or in order to comply with a subpoena issued by a judge of a court of competent jurisdiction.
- To disclose information to any source when necessary to obtain information relevant to a conflict-of-interest investigation or determination.
- By the National Archives and Records Administration or the General Services Administration in records management inspections conducted under authority of 44 U.S.C. 2904 and 2906.
- To disclose information to the Office of Management and Budget at any stage in the legislative coordination and clearance process in connection with private relief legislation as set forth in OMB Circular No. A-19.
- To disclose information to the Department of Justice, or in a proceeding before a court, adjudicative body, or other administrative body before which OGE is authorized to appear, when: OGE; or an employee of OGE in his or her official capacity, or any employee of OGE in his or her individual capacity (where the Department of Justice or OGE has agreed to represent the employee); or the United States (when OGE determines that litigation is likely to affect OGE), is a party to litigation or has an interest in such litigation, and the use of such records by the Department of Justice or OGE is deemed by OGE to be relevant and necessary to the litigation provided, however, that the disclosure is compatible with the purpose for which such records were collected.
- To disclose the public financial disclosure report and any accompanying documents to reviewing officials in a new office, department or agency when an employee transfers or is detailed from a covered position in one office, department or agency to a covered position in another office, department or agency.
- To disclose information to a Member of Congress or a congressional office in response to an inquiry made on behalf of an individual who is the subject of the record.
- To disclose information to contractors, grantees, experts, consultants, detailees, and other non-Government employees performing or working on a contract, service, or other assignment for the Federal Government, when necessary to accomplish an agency function related to this system of records.
Note: When an agency is requested to furnish such records to the Director or other authorized officials of the Office of Government Ethics (OGE), such a disclosure is to be considered as made to those officers and employees of the agency which co-maintains the records who have a need for the records in the performance of their official duties in accordance with the Ethics in Government Act of 1978, 5 U.S.C. app., and other ethics-related laws, Executive orders and regulations conferring pertinent authority on OGE, pursuant to the provision of the Privacy Act at 5 U.S.C. 552a(b)(1).
POLICIES AND PRACTICES FOR STORING, RETRIEVING, ACCESSING, RETAINING, AND DISPOSING OF RECORDS IN THE SYSTEM:
These records are maintained in paper and/or electronic form.
These records are retrieved by the name or other programmatic identifier assigned to the individual on whom they are maintained.
These records are maintained in file cabinets which may be locked or in specified areas to which only authorized personnel have access. Electronic records are protected from unauthorized access through password identification procedures, limited access, firewalls and other system-based protection methods.
RETENTION AND DISPOSAL:
In accordance with the National Archives and Records Administration General Records Schedule for ethics program records, these records are generally retained for a period of six years after filing, or for such other period of time as is provided for in that schedule for certain specified types of ethics records. In cases where records are filed by, or with respect to, a nominee for an appointment requiring confirmation by the Senate when the nominee is not appointed and Presidential and Vice-Presidential candidates who are not elected, the records are generally destroyed one year after the date the individual ceased being under Senate consideration for appointment or is no longer a candidate for office. However, if any records are needed in an ongoing investigation, they will be retained until no longer needed in the investigation. Destruction is by shredding or electronic deletion.
System Manager(s) and Address:
- For records filed directly with the Office of Government Ethics by non-OGE employees: Deputy Director, Office of Agency Programs, Office of Government Ethics, Suite 500, 1201 New York Avenue, NW., Washington, DC 20005-3917;
- For records filed with a Designated Agency Ethics Official (DAEO) or the head of a department or agency: The DAEO at the department or agency concerned; and
- For records filed with the Federal Election Commission (FEC) by candidates for President or Vice President: The General Counsel, Office of General Counsel, Federal Election Commission, 999 E Street, NW., Washington, DC 20463.
Individuals wishing to inquire whether this system of records contains information about them should contact, as appropriate:
- For records filed directly with OGE by non-OGE employees, contact the OGE Deputy Director, Office of Agency Programs, Office of Government Ethics, Suite 500, 1201 New York Avenue, NW., Washington, DC 20005-3917;
- For records filed with a Designated Agency Ethics Official (DAEO) or the head of a department or agency, contact the DAEO at the department or agency concerned; and
- For records filed with the FEC by candidates for President or Vice President, contact the FEC General Counsel, Federal Election Commission, 999 E Street, NW., Washington, DC 20463.
Individuals wishing to make such an inquiry must furnish the following information for their records to be located and identified:
- Full name.
- Department or agency and component with which employed or proposed to be employed.
- Dates of employment.
Individuals seeking to determine if a system contains information about them must also follow OGE's Privacy Act regulations regarding verification of identity (5 CFR part 2606).
Record Access Procedures:
Individuals wishing to request access to their records should contact the appropriate office as shown in the Notification Procedure section. Individuals must furnish the following information for their records to be located and identified:
- Full name.
- Department or agency and component with which employed or proposed to be employed.
- Dates of employment.
- Reasonably specify the record content being sought.
Individuals requesting access must also follow OGE's Privacy Act regulations regarding verification of identity and access to records (5 CFR part 2606).
Contesting Record Procedures:
Since the information in these records is updated on a periodic basis, most record corrections can be handled through established administrative procedures for updating the records. However, individuals can obtain information on the procedures for contesting the records under the provisions of the Privacy Act by contacting the appropriate office shown in the Notification Procedure section.
Record Source Categories:
Information in this system of records is provided by:
- The subject individual or by a designated person, such as a trustee, attorney, accountant, banker, or relative.
- Federal officials who review the statements to make conflict of interest determinations.
- Persons alleging conflict of interests or violations of other ethics laws and persons contacted during any investigation of the allegations.
Exemptions Claimed for the System: