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(B) any communication relating to a collection of information which is not approved under this subchapter, the disclosure of which could lead to retaliation or discrimination against the communicator.

(f)(1) An independent regulatory agency which is administered by 2 or more members of a commission, board, or similar body, may by majority vote void

(A) any disapproval by the Director, in whole or in part, of a proposed collection of information of that agency; or

(B) an exercise of authority under subsection (d) of section 3507 concerning that agency.

(2) The agency shall certify each vote to void such disapproval or exercise to the Director, and explain the reasons for such vote. The Director shall without further delay assign a control number to such collection of information, and such vote to void the disapproval or exercise shall be valid for a period of 3 years.

(g) The Director may not approve a collection of information for a period in excess of 3 years.

(h)(1) If an agency decides to seek extension of the Director's approval granted for a currently approved collection of information, the agency shall—

(A) conduct the review established under section 3506(c), including the seeking of comment from the public on the continued need for, and burden imposed by the collection of information; and

(B) after having made a reasonable effort to seek public comment, but no later than 60 days before the expiration date of the control number assigned by the Director for the currently approved collection of information, submit the collection of information for review and approval under this section, which shall include an explanation of how the agency has used the information that it has collected.

(2) If under the provisions of this section, the Director disapproves a collection of information contained in an existing rule, or recommends or instructs the agency to make a substantive or material change to a collection of information contained in an existing rule, the Director shall

(A) publish an explanation thereof in the Federal Register;


(B) instruct the agency to undertake a rulemaking within a reasonable time limited to consideration of changes to the collection of information contained in the rule and thereafter to submit the collection of information for approval or disapproval under this subchapter.

(3) An agency may not make a substantive or material modification to a collection of information after such collection has been approved by the Director, unless the modification has been submitted to the Director for review and approval under this subchapter.

(i)(1) If the Director finds that a senior official of an agency designated under section 3506(a) is sufficiently independent of program responsibility to evaluate fairly whether proposed collections of information should be approved and has sufficient resources to carry out this responsibility effectively, the Director may, by rule

in accordance with the notice and comment provisions of chapter 5 of title 5, United States Code, delegate to such official the authority to approve proposed collections of information in specific program areas, for specific purposes, or for all agency purposes.

(2) A delegation by the Director under this section shall not preclude the Director from reviewing individual collections of information if the Director determines that circumstances warrant such a review. The Director shall retain authority to revoke such delegations, both in general and with regard to any specific matter. In acting for the Director, any official to whom approval authority has been delegated under this section shall comply fully with the rules and regulations promulgated by the Director.

(j)(1) The agency head may request the Director to authorize a collection of information, if an agency head determines that

(A) a collection of information

(i) is needed prior to the expiration of time periods established under this subchapter; and

(ii) is essential to the mission of the agency; and

(B) the agency cannot reasonably comply with the provisions of this subchapter because

(i) public harm is reasonably likely to result if normal clearance procedures are followed;

(ii) an unanticipated event has occurred; or

(iii) the use of normal clearance procedures is reasonably likely to prevent or disrupt the collection of information or is reasonably likely to cause a statutory or court ordered deadline to be missed.

(2) The Director shall approve or disapprove any such authorization request within the time requested by the agency head and, if approved, shall assign the collection of information a control number. Any collection of information conducted under this subsection may be conducted without compliance with the provisions of this subchapter for a maximum of 180 days after the date on which the Director received the request to authorize such collection.

§ 3508. Determination of necessity for information; hearing Before approving a proposed collection of information, the Director shall determine whether the collection of information by the agency is necessary for the proper performance of the functions of the agency, including whether the information shall have practical utility. Before making a determination the Director may give the agency and other interested persons an opportunity to be heard or to submit statements in writing. To the extent, if any, that the Director determines that the collection of information by an agency is unnecessary for any reason, the agency may not engage in the collection of information.

§3509. Designation of central collection agency

The Director may designate a central collection agency to obtain information for two or more agencies if the Director determines that the needs of such agencies for information will be adequately served by a single collection agency, and such sharing of data is not inconsistent with applicable law. In such cases the Di

rector shall prescribe (with reference to the collection of information) the duties and functions of the collection agency so designated and of the agencies for which it is to act as agent (including reimbursement for costs). While the designation is in effect, an agency covered by the designation may not obtain for itself information for the agency which is the duty of the collection agency to obtain. The Director may modify the designation from time to time as circumstances require. The authority to designate under this section is subject to the provisions of section 3507(f) of this subchapter.

§ 3510. Cooperation of agencies in making information


(a) The Director may direct an agency to make available to another agency, or an agency may make available to another agency, information obtained by a collection of information if the disclosure is not inconsistent with applicable law.

(b)(1) If information obtained by an agency is released by that agency to another agency, all the provisions of law (including penalties) that relate to the unlawful disclosure of information apply to the officers and employees of the agency to which information is released to the same extent and in the same manner as the provisions apply to the officers and employees of the agency which originally obtained the information.

(2) The officers and employees of the agency to which the information is released, in addition, shall be subject to the same provisions of law, including penalties, relating to the unlawful disclosure of information as if the information had been collected directly by that agency.

§ 3511. Establishment and operation of Government Information Locator Service

(a) In order to assist agencies and the public in locating information and to promote information sharing and equitable access by the public, the Director shall

(1) cause to be established and maintained a distributed agency-based electronic Government Information Locator Service (hereafter in this section referred to as the "Service"), which shall identify the major information systems, holdings, and dissemination products of each agency;

(2) require each agency to establish and maintain an agency information locator service as a component of, and to support the establishment and operation of the Service;

(3) in cooperation with the Archivist of the United States, the Administrator of General Services, the Public Printer, and the Librarian of Congress, establish an interagency committee to advise the Secretary of Commerce on the development of technical standards for the Service to ensure compatibility, promote information sharing, and uniform access by the public; (4) consider public access and other user needs in the establishment and operation of the Service;

(5) ensure the security and integrity of the Service, including measures to ensure that only information which is intended to be disclosed to the public is disclosed through the Service; and

(6) periodically review the development and effectiveness of the Service and make recommendations for improvement, including other mechanisms for improving public access to Federal agency public information.

(b) This section shall not apply to operational files as defined by the Central Intelligence Agency Information Act (50 U.S.C. 431 et seq.).

§ 3512. Public protection

(a) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, no person shall be subject to any penalty for failing to comply with a collection of information that is subject to this subchapter if

(1) the collection of information does not display a valid control number assigned by the Director in accordance with this subchapter; or

(2) the agency fails to inform the person who is to respond to the collection of information that such person is not required to respond to the collection of information unless it displays a valid control number.

(b) The protection provided by this section may be raised in the form of a complete defense, bar, or otherwise at any time during the agency administrative process or judicial action applicable thereto.

§ 3513. Director review of agency activities; reporting; agency response

(a) In consultation with the Administrator of General Services, the Archivist of the United States, the Director of the National Institute of Standards and Technology, and the Director of the Office of Personnel Management, the Director shall periodically review selected agency information resources management activities to ascertain the efficiency and effectiveness of such activities to improve agency performance and the accomplishment of agency missions.

(b) Each agency having an activity reviewed under subsection (a) shall, within 60 days after receipt of a report on the review, provide a written plan to the Director describing steps (including milestones) to

(1) be taken to address information resources management problems identified in the report; and

(2) improve agency performance and the accomplishment of agency missions.

§3514. Responsiveness to Congress

(a)(1) The Director shall

(A) keep the Congress and congressional committees fully and currently informed of the major activities under this subchapter; and

(B) submit a report on such activities to the President of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representatives annually and at such other times as the Director determines necessary.

(2) The Director shall include in any such report a description of the extent to which agencies have

(A) reduced information collection burdens on the public, including

(i) a summary of accomplishments and planned initiatives to reduce collection of information burdens;

(ii) a list of all violations of this subchapter and of any rules, guidelines, policies, and procedures issued pursuant to this subchapter;

(iii) a list of any increase in the collection of information burden, including the authority for each such collection; and

(iv) a list of agencies that in the preceding year did not reduce information collection burdens in accordance with section 3505(a)(1), a list of the programs and statutory responsibilities of those agencies that precluded that reduction, and recommendations to assist those agencies to reduce information collection burdens in accordance with that section;

(B) improved the quality and utility of statistical informa


(C) improved public access to Government information;


(D) improved program performance and the accomplishment of agency missions through information resources management.

(b) The preparation of any report required by this section shall be based on performance results reported by the agencies and shall not increase the collection of information burden on persons outside the Federal Government.

§ 3515. Administrative powers

Upon the request of the Director, each agency (other than an independent regulatory agency) shall, to the extent practicable, make its services, personnel, and facilities available to the Director for the performance of functions under this subchapter.

§3516. Rules and regulations

The Director shall promulgate rules, regulations, or procedures necessary to exercise the authority provided by this subchapter. § 3517. Consultation with other agencies and the public

(a) In developing information resources management policies, plans, rules, regulations, procedures, and guidelines and in reviewing collections of information, the Director shall provide interested agencies and persons early and meaningful opportunity to comment.

(b) Any person may request the Director to review any collection of information conducted by or for an agency to determine, if, under this subchapter, a person shall maintain, provide, or disclose the information to or for the agency. Unless the request is frivolous, the Director shall, in coordination with the agency responsible for the collection of information

(1) respond to the request within 60 days after receiving the request, unless such period is extended by the Director to

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