Effective Date: December 07, 2020
Expiration Date: December 07, 2025
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a. The General Counsel of NASA is the Designated Agency Ethics Official (DAEO) and is delegated the authority to coordinate and manage NASA's Ethics Program as set forth in 5 CFR § 2638.203. The DAEO is responsible for the administration, coordination, and management of the Agency's Ethics Program. Delegation or re-assignment of the DAEO's duties does not release the DAEO from responsibility. The DAEO's oversight responsibilities include ensuring that NASA's Ethics Program has adequate resources, is effective, and is administered in accordance with applicable laws and regulations. The DAEO makes delegations of authority and ensures that prompt and effective action is taken to remedy potential or actual conflicts of interests. The DAEO's responsibilities include, but are not limited to, the following activities:
(1) Providing final written or oral opinions concerning the application of the conflict of interest laws or the Standards of Ethical Conduct for Employees of the Executive Branch, including giving advice directly to Government employees;
(2) Appointing an Agency Counsel for Ethics who will serve as the Alternate Designated Agency Ethics Official (ADAEO);
(3) Serving as an "Agency Designee" as defined in Appendix A for purposes of 5 CFR part 2635;
(4) Maintaining, distributing, collecting, reviewing, and certifying financial disclosure reports, in accordance with relevant laws and regulations;
(5) Receiving, reviewing, and granting requests for disclosure of Public Financial Disclosure Reports, in accordance with relevant laws and regulations;
(6) Determining Agency policies, e.g., determining (with approval by the Office of Government Ethics (OGE)) the need to issue, and content of, supplemental standards of ethical conduct regulations, and recommending for designation departmental or Agency components for purposes of Restrictions on former officers, employees, and elected officials of the executive and legislative branches, 18 U.S.C. § 207;
(7) Referring a criminal or regulatory matter to the NASA Inspector General for investigation;
(8) Assisting the NASA Inspector General in referring a criminal matter to the Department of Justice (DOJ);
(9) When matters have been referred to DOJ (or State or local authorities) for potential prosecution, referring matters to and advising appropriate management officials to assist them in taking appropriate administrative action whether the matter is ultimately accepted for prosecution or declined. Such action need not await final outcome of the criminal matter if NASA officials have sufficient factual basis for initiating an action, provided that such actions are coordinated with prosecutors to ensure that the potential criminal case is not prejudiced;
(10) Referring matters to and advising appropriate management officials to assist them in taking administrative action to the fullest extent with regard to regulatory violations;
(11) Exercising delegated authority to grant individual waivers under 18 U.S.C. §§ 208(b)(1) and (b)(3);
(12) Developing and conducting training; and
(13) Ensuring proper maintenance and disposition of Ethics Program records in accordance with NPR 1441.1, NASA Records Management Program Requirements.
1.2.1 Program Responsibility
The Agency Counsel for Ethics shall serve as the ADAEO and manage the Ethics Program on behalf of the DAEO. The ADAEO is responsible to the DAEO for development and implementation of Ethics Program policies, ethics matters with Agency-wide significance, Center ethics matters that require Headquarters actions, and all Headquarters ethics matters.1.2.2 Financial Disclosure Reports
The ADAEO will provide a recommendation to the Director, Headquarters Human Resources Management Division, on the merits of exempting a position or class of positions at NASA Headquarters from the confidential reporting requirement.
1.3.1 Program Responsibility
Each Center Chief Counsel is responsible to the DAEO and the ADAEO for all Ethics Program activities at that Center. The Counsel to the Inspector General will have the authorities and the responsibilities of a Center Chief Counsel with respect to the ethics program for the Office of Inspector General.
1.3.2 Financial Disclosure Reports
The Chief Counsel will provide a recommendation to Center Human Resources Officers on the merits of exempting a position or class of positions at a NASA Center or Component Facility from the confidential reporting requirement.
The NASA Shared Services Center (NSSC) shall provide system support services to the Ethics Program as provided in NPD 1900.9, through the Ethics Program Tracking System (EPTS), which enables electronic filing and recordkeeping, electronic-assisted review, and notification for financial disclosure, as well as tracking and notification functions related to ethics training. NSSC also ensures that the Federal Personnel Payroll System (FPPS) Financial Disclosure Statement Field reflects the requirement to file.
The Director, Headquarters Human Resources Management Division, shall determine whether to exempt a position or class of positions at Headquarters from the financial disclosure requirement, subject to the standards set forth in chapter 4.
Center Human Resources Officers shall determine whether to exempt a position or class of positions at a NASA Center or Component Facility from a financial disclosure requirement, subject to the standards set forth in chapter 4. In this NPR and the accompanying NPD, Center Human Resources Officers are also designated as "Directors" when collectively referring to the Director of the Headquarters Human Resources Management Division and Center Human Resources Officers. For purposes of this NPR, The Director of Human Resources of the Office of Inspector General will have the authorities and responsibilities of a Center Human Resources Officer for employees of the Office of Inspector General.
The Executive Directors and Secretaries shall coordinate with their Committee members to ensure that all legal and ethical requirements pertaining to Federal advisory committee members are met. For SGEs, these requirements include, but are not limited to, timely filing of financial disclosure reports and ethics training by a representative of NASA’s Office of General Counsel (OGC) and seeking advice from the NASA OGC Ethics Team for any questions concerning Government ethics requirements. The Executive Directors and Secretaries of NASA Advisory Committees are responsible for performing an intermediate review of all financial disclosure reports for SGEs assigned to their committees.
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