Ongoing Projects

This project explores agencies’ practices under the Federal Vacancies Reform Act of 1998, looking at the use of acting officials and of delegations of authority during periods in which a Senate-confirmed position sits vacant. Among other things, it examines how agencies design systems for succession planning, assign appropriate titles, and communicate relevant information to the public.

Committee:

This project explores agencies’ use of administrative judges (AJs), who preside over hearings outside of those governed by the Administrative Procedure Act. It studies the use of AJs across numerous agencies and offers recommendations on selection, supervision, evaluation, and removal practices. A proposed recommendation from the Committee on Adjudication was on the agenda of the June 2018 Plenary Session.

This project studies agencies’ appellate review of hearing-level adjudicative decisions. Topics include the structure, composition, functions, procedures, and authority of agency appellate bodies. Resulting recommendations will focus on the ways in which agencies can enhance both the efficiency and fairness of appellate review.  

A council for leaders in independent regulatory agencies, CIRA's goal is to provide a forum to discuss issues common to these agencies.  Because independent regulatory agencies are subject to limited OMB oversight, they have limited mechanisms for sharing information and solving common administrative problems.

The Conference is studying the use and incorporation of electronic case management in agency adjudication in order to make recommendations and share best practices.  Electronic case management is a comprehensive system that enables an agency to manage its adjudications for increased efficiency and access.

The Federal Administrative Procedure Sourcebook is an annotated compilation of the key legal sources—including the Administrative Procedure Act, the Freedom of Information Act, the Congressional Review Act, and executive orders—governing nearly every aspect of administrative procedure.

This project catalogs all provisions in the U.S. Code that govern federal judicial review of agency action. Topics include the availability of review, choice of court, administrative exhaustion, limitations periods, and the scope and standard of review. The project will result in a guide for use by Congress, the judiciary, agencies, and the public. Leading experts will serve as project advisors.

Committee:

A common remedy under the Administrative Procedure Act for an invalid agency rule is for a court to set aside the entire rule.  Promulgating a replacement rule can be time consuming and costly.  This project will examine what actions agencies undertake to contain the costs of vacatur and remand.

The Office of the Chairman of the Administrative Conference of the United States has established a working group—the Model Adjudication Rules Working Group—to review and revise the Conference’s Model Adjudication Rules.

This project explores the online accessibility, arrangement, and legal presentation of the rules that govern formal and informal agency adjudications. It studies existing laws and agency practices relevant to the online accessibility of adjudication rules and identifies best practices agencies may consider in increasing their accessibility on agency websites.