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- Independent agencies are created by Congress, and are similar to Cabinet Departments, but are smaller and focus on more specific policy areas.
- The agency heads are appointed by the President, and confirmed by the Senate.
- The president may remove agency heads at any time without congressional approval
Executive Departments and Agencies
- There are 15 Executive Departments, led by a Secretary or the Attorney General (Justice Department).
- The heads are chosen by presidential appointment and confirmed by the Senate.
- A department secretary can be fired by the president at any time without congressional approval.
- Within each department, there are agencies of greater specialization.
- If you have an agency from this list, you must figure out what Executive Department your agency is within.
Independent Regulatory Agencies
- The Independent Regulatory Agencies are created by an act of Congress, and are to be autonomous agencies.
- While they are considered part of the executive branch,they are to be independent of the executive departments and the president.
- These agencies are to impose and enforce regulations free of political influence.
- They are typically run by 5-10 member boards, appointed by the president and confirmed by the Senate.
- They tend to have specific terms of office, with terms staggered so a single president could not necessarily appoint all members.
- The president does not have the authority to remove agency heads, which is part of their independent nature.
- Members generally may not all be from the same political party.
- Government corporations are agencies that conduct business or produce products for the nation.
- They are organized like private corporations with a board of directors and general manger, and they usually charge for their services.
- The president selects most of the top officers, with Senate confirmation.
- These have generally been created to serve markets that would not be profitable for the private sector, and have varying degrees of independence.
- They are often subject to congressional actions that control their missions and goals.
Executive Office of the Presidency
- The Executive Offices of the Presidency [EOP] includes highly influential policy-related offices and agencies.
- Heads of agencies are filled through presidential appointment, but no Senate confirmation is required.
- The President may remove heads of these agencies at any time without congressional approval.