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20061004 – No privacy reports under DHS?

In his October 4, 2006 Statement on Signing the Department of Homeland Security Appropriations Act, 2007 (H.R. 5441), the President said:

The executive branch shall construe section 522 of the Act, relating to privacy officer reports, in a manner consistent with the President’s constitutional authority to supervise the unitary executive branch.


The executive branch shall construe section 503(c)(4) in a manner consistent with the constitutional authority of the President to require the opinions of heads of departments and to supervise the unitary executive branch. Accordingly, the affected department and agency shall ensure that any reports or recommendations submitted to the Congress are subjected to appropriate executive branch review and approval before submission.

The full text of HR 5441 can be found on its Thomas page.

Section 522 appears to be intended to prevent anyone but the DHS privacy officer from altering his/her reports:

SEC. 522. None of the funds made available in this Act may be used by any person other than the Privacy Officer appointed under section 222 of the Homeland Security Act of 2002 (6 U.S.C. 142) to alter, direct that changes be made to, delay, or prohibit the transmission to Congress of any report prepared under paragraph (6) of such section.

Makes you wonder why you’d want other people to alter the reports, or why a REPUBLICAN Congress might be concerned enough to put this provision into legislation.

Section 503(c) does not appear to come with a subparagraph 4. If you spot such a provision or know what the President is talking about, please let us know in comments or by e-mail to admin AT

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