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THE WHITE HOUSE
Office of Science and Technology Policy
For Immediate Release September 25, 1995
FEDERAL LABORATORY REFORM
On May 5, 1994, President Clinton requested the National Science and
Technology Council (NSTC) to review the Federal Laboratories operated by
the Department of Defense, the Department of Energy, and the National
Aeronautics and Space Administration. The NSTC completed its report to
the President May 15, 1995.
Based on that report, the President has concluded that the laboratory
systems of the Department of Defense, the Department of Energy, and the
National Aeronautics and Space Administration provide essential service
to the Nation in fundamental science, national security, environmental
protection, energy, aerospace, and technologies that contribute to
It is imperative that the national investment in these resources be
used in the most efficient and effective manner possible. On the basis
of the Vice Presidentís National Performance Review, and of the National
Science and Technology Council Interagency Federal Laboratory Review,
much has been done in implementing reforms in management of the Nationís
three largest laboratory systems. To ensure the best management and
return on Federal expenditures, the President has provided further
guidance to the heads of Agencies for implementation of management
reforms within the federal laboratory system.
General Guidelines and Principles
The United States will improve agency management and reduce unnecessary
redundancy in the laboratory systems of the Department of Defense, the
Department of Energy, and the National Aeronautics and Space
Administration, while maintaining the laboratoriesí quality and ability
to contribute to national needs.
In implementing reforms of the federal laboratory system, agencies
will adhere to the following general guidelines and principles:
Agencies will review and, as appropriate, rescind internal
management instructions, regulations, and redundant oversight that
impeded laboratory performance.
Agencies will clarify and focus mission assignments for their
laboratories, eliminating redundancy and restructuring the laboratory
systems as appropriate and necessary.
In their efforts to achieve greater efficiency and effectiveness in
their laboratory systems, agencies will fist seek to achieve all
possible savings through streamlining and improving management. Then,
as necessary, they will reduce or eliminate lower priority programs, in
accordance with guidance from the Office of Management and Budget and
the Office of Science and Technology Policy, based on priorities set by
the National Science and Technology Council and, as appropriate, the
National Security C ouncil.
Agencies will continue to explore opportunities to coordinate and
integrate laboratory resources and facilities on an interagency and
inter-service basis, eliminating unnecessary duplication and
establishing joint management where appropriate.
Nuclear Weapons Responsibility
Subsequent to the NSTC Laboratory Review completed in May, 1995, the
Departments of Energy and Defense, in coordination with the National
Security Council conducted an examination of capabilities and functions
necessary to conduct an effective science-based stockpile stewardship
program. On basis of this review, the President has concluded that the
continued vitality of all three DOE nuclear weapons laboratories is
essential to the nationís ability to fulfill the requirements of
stockpile stewardship as we enter into a Comprehensive Test Ban regime.
In accordance with this conclusion, the Department of Energy is
directed to maintain nuclear weapons responsibilities and capabilities
adequate to support the science-based stockpile stewardship program
required to ensure continues confidence in the safety and reliability of
the nuclear weapons stockpile in the absence of nuclear testing. The
Joint Report on the Stockpile Stewardship required by Presidential
Directive and submitted annually to the NSC Interagency Working Group
shall be developed consi stent with this requirement.