Brian Steed, Bureau of Land Management’s Acting Director

“Federal agencies are not supposed to be run like a temp service.” – PEER Executive Director Jeff Ruch

Source: Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility (PEER)

For Immediate Release: Feb 12, 2018
Contact: Kirsten Stade (202) 265-7337


All Decisions by Acting Park Service, BLM, and Fish & Wildlife Heads Legally Void

Washington, DC — President Trump’s record tardiness in nominating agency leaders may undo months of work inside the Department of Interior, according to a complaint filed today by Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility (PEER).  The way the Trump administration has filled agency leadership slots with temporary or acting directors violates a law enacted to prevent a president from circumventing the U.S. Senate’s constitutional advice and consent power.

The PEER complaint filed with Interior’s Office of Inspector General charges that the acting directors of the National Park Service (NPS), Bureau of Land Management (BLM), and U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service (FWS) are in blatant violation of the Federal Vacancies Reform Act.  Under that act, any action taken by a noncompliant official “shall have no force or effect” nor may it be later “ratified.”

“The law prevents a president from installing acting directors for long periods and completely bypassing Senate confirmation,” argued PEER Executive Director Jeff Ruch, noting that President Trump has not nominated or even announced an intention to nominate, persons to fil the NPS, BLM, or FWS vacancies.  “Federal agencies are not supposed to be run like a temp service.”

The complaint recounts Vacancies Reform Act violations invalidating the appointments of –

  • NPS Acting Director P. Daniel Smith, who did not serve in a senior position for 90 days during the prior year, as the Act requires. Nor did Trump appoint him, another requirement of the act;
  • BLM Acting Director Brian Steed, who also did not serve in a senior position for 90 days and Interior Secretary Zinke, not Trump, appointed him.
  • FWS Acting Director Greg Sheehan, who not only suffers from these same deficiencies but also now exceeds the 210-day limit the act imposes.

Read the rest of this press release HERE.




6 replies »

  1. Documented corruption and fraud hasn’t stopped them yet but I hope this PEER exposure will move to a law suit which will “clean house” at the BLM and other illegal portions of our government.
    It is way overdue.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. This whole hullaballoo sounds like all the rest! Feels like everyone in and around this administration believes this is their opportunity to do as they please AND get as much as they can! Putting “Acting” directors in place in order to avoid nomination problems? How is this condoned? At this point, there are so many “illegal portions of this government” (as GG said) getting this house cleaned will need more than one lawsuit! Talk about bad apples – this is a whole truckload..


  3. Learning the definition of a word we have all heard before …
    Fascism is a form of radical authoritarian nationalism, characterized by dictatorial power and forcible suppression of opposition.

    Dan Rather explains:



    There has been a vast conflict between your public statements assuring the people that “we want to protect our workers, their safety our health and we want to protect our air and our country’s natural beauty.” Moreover, last year you asserted that no one would go without healthcare.
    By contrast, you have selected men and women to run your health and safety regulatory agencies and departments who were and are openly hostile to these agencies’ official statutory missions. Like you, those you have appointed are boastful about their intention to dismantle limits on lethal or injurious impacts and actions that have been saving the lives, health and safety of the American people and protecting consumer dollars. You are aware of their sworn oath of office to uphold the laws under their jurisdiction – an oath preceded by similar assurances in their sworn congressional testimony at their Senate confirmation hearings

    Pay attention to what those you have appointed are undoing, if only because they will be doing in your congressional supporters in November. You should start with the
    Rogue’s gallery of Mick Mulvaney, grinding down the CFPB,
    Alex Acosta, the Secretary Against Labor,
    Scott Pruitt, Chief Toxifier at the EPA,
    RYAN ZINKE, Oil-Driller-in-Chief on the federal lands and offshore,
    Sonny Perdue, the anti-nutritionist at USDA,
    Scott Gottlieb, the drug industry’s man at the FDA, and
    Betsy DeVos, the corporatist, jeopardizing students at the Department of Education.

    Sincerely yours,
    Ralph Nader

    Liked by 1 person

  5. February 13, 2018

    “On Feb. 12, our Bureau of Land Management took a significant step backwards by allowing greater waste of the U.S. citizens’ petroleum resource.

    Secretary Zinke is proposing to cancel the recently enacted requirements on petroleum well producers to collect and pay royalties to the federal treasury for methane and other hydrocarbon gases presently released (wasted) to the atmosphere.

    This will seriously weaken efforts to curb waste on our public lands, leading to the loss of hundreds of millions of dollars of taxpayer-owned energy resources every year. As methane is a greenhouse gas, this reversal in rules also will cause greater impacts from more rapid global warming.

    During last year’s federal rule making there was overwhelming public support for enactment of this common-sense rule, including support from the Republican-controlled U.S. Senate. This is a blatant case of increased profits to the industry at the expense of us citizens.

    There will be a public comment period for this proposed reversal in these common-sense rules. We encourage people to submit their comments to the BLM within the next 60 days supporting the previous rule and asking the BLM to protect our publicly owned resources. Responses can be submitted to http://www.regulations.gov. ”

    SOURCE: https://www.steamboattoday.com/news/rodger-steen-blm-taking-step-backward/


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