President Obama has decided to throw the dice and reorganize or propose to reorganize the Executive Branch in his last year of his first and possibly last term. This proposal will probably not be effective until 2013 at the earliest even if approved by Congress. The end of the Commerce Department as currently structured would also send NOAA to the Department of Interior. NOAA and the NWS have already protested publically this makes no sense. None cite the real reason which is set forth below:
First the Department of Interior organization as extracted from Wikipedia:
- Assistant Secretary for Policy, Management, and Budget
- Bureau of Indian Affairs
- Bureau of Land Management
- Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement
- Bureau of Reclamation
- Federal Executive Boards
- Interior Museum
- National Park Service
- Office of Insular Affairs
- Office of Surface Mining
- United States Fish and Wildlife Service
- United States Geological Survey
I exempt the NPS, the USF&WS, and the USGS from this following comment. Most of the Interior Department is corruptly managed, administered and staffed and has a complete disregard for science and largely is a mature bureaucracy that is totally dominated by the lobbyists. Founded in 1849 the Department’s worst corruption was evidenced by the TEAPOT DOME scandal in the 1920’s and the BP catastrophe in 2010.
I would argue that this recommended assignment by the President makes absolutely no sense and in fact NOAA and the NWS should be part of a new Science, Climate, Atmospheric, and Geological Resources Department. Other things also should be focused upon including the CZM program in NOAA that should incorporate coastal mapping and mitigation issues from FEMA and DHS under the NFIP.
It will be interesting to see what does happen.
My guess is the President is trying to do this in case his place in history rests on his first and only term.