[Constitution, Jefferson's Manual, and the Rules of the House of Representatives, 109th Congress]
[House Document 108-241]
[House And Congressional Offices]
[From the U.S. Government Printing Office, www.gpo.gov]
HOUSE AND CONGRESSIONAL OFFICES
Sec. 1113. House Commission on Congressional
Members may send through the mails, under their frank, certain
documents and materials as provided by 39 U.S.C. 3210, subject to the
limitations prescribed in rule XXIV, supra. The House Commission on
Congressional Mailing Standards, composed of six Members of the House,
provides advice in connection with the mailing of franked mail (sec. 5,
Sec. 1114. House Office Building
Rooms in the House Office Buildings are assigned to Members pursuant to
the law of May 28, 1908 (2 U.S.C. 2004) and pursuant to regulations of
the House Office Building Commission (see regulations promulgated Oct.
7, 1996). The commission also issues regulations governing the House
Office Buildings, House garages, and the Capitol Power Plant (see
regulations promulgated December, 1995). The commission is composed of
the Speaker and two Members of the House (traditionally the Majority and
Minority Leaders) (2 U.S.C. 2001).
Sec. 1115. Government Accountability
The preparation, utilization, and distribution (to committees and Members) of
reports by the Government Accountability Office, and its authority to
assign its employees to duty with congressional committees, are
regulated by the Legislative Reorganization Act of 1970, Sec. Sec. 231-
236 (84 Stat. 1140; 31 U.S.C. 711-720). This office was formerly known
as the General Accounting Office (31 U.S.C. 702 note).
Sec. 1116. Office of Compliance.
The Office of Compliance
was established by the Congressional Accountability Act of 1995 (2
U.S.C. 1381). The office is composed of five individuals appointed
jointly by the Speaker, the Majority Leader of the Senate, and the
Minority Leaders of the House and the Senate. The office has regulatory,
enforcement, and educational responsibilities under the Act. The office
replaced the Review Panel of the Office of Fair Employment Practices at
the beginning of the 105th Congress (see Sec. 1101, supra). However, the
review panel was reconstituted in the same form as at the end of the
104th Congress to provide for the completion of ongoing proceedings in
the 105th Congress (Feb. 25, 1997, p. 2439). Section 1382 provides for a
General Counsel to be appointed by the Chair of the Compliance Board to
exercise the authorities of the Office of Compliance.
Sec. 1117. Congressional Research
The organization of the Congressional Research Service of the Library of
Congress and its responsibilities to assist Members and committees were
provided in the Legislative Reorganization Acts of 1946 and 1970 (60
Stat. 836; 84 Stat. 1140; 2 U.S.C. 166).
Sec. 1118. Legislative Counsel.
The Office of the
Legislative Counsel of the House of Representatives evolved from a
single Legislative Drafting Service established for the Congress by the
Act of February 24, 1919 (40 Stat. 1057, 1141). The currently applicable
provisions of law setting forth the purpose and functions of the Office
and providing for its administration are contained in title V of the
Legislative Reorganization Act of 1970 (P.L. 91-510; 2 U.S.C. 281) as
amended by the Legislative Branch Appropriations Act, 1972 (P.L. 92-51).
As stated in section 502 of such title V, the purpose of the Office is
to advise and assist the House of Representatives, and its committees
and Members, in the achievement of a clear, faithful, and coherent
expression of legislative policies.
Sec. 1119. Congressional Budget
The Congressional Budget Office was established by the Congressional Budget Act
of 1974 (2 U.S.C. 601). The office is headed by a director, who is
appointed by the Speaker and the President pro tempore. Section 202 of
the Act (2 U.S.C. 602) outlines the functions of the office, which
include providing assistance to the House and Senate Committees on the
Budget and Appropriations and the Senate Committee on Finance in the
discharge of matters within their jurisdiction and to other committees
to assist them in complying with the provisions of the Act.
Sec. 1120. Law Revision Counsel.
The Office of the Law
Revision Counsel, to develop a codification of the laws of the United
States, was authorized in the 93d Congress by the Committee Reform
Amendments of 1974 (sec. 205, H. Res. 988, Oct. 8, 1974, p. 34470, made
permanent law by P.L. 93-544 (2 U.S.C. 285)).
tion of the precedents of the House of Representatives were authorized
in the 93d Congress by the Committee Reform Amendments of 1974 (sec.
208, H. Res. 988, Oct. 8, 1974, p. 34470, made permanent law by P.L. 93-
554, 2 U.S.C. 28a), and the printing and distribution of the precedents
were authorized by Public Law 94-551 (2 U.S.C. 28b-e). See also 2 U.S.C.
Sec. 1121. Technology Assessment.
The Office of Technology
Assessment, to assist the Congress in indicating the beneficial and
adverse impacts of the application of technology, was authorized by the
Technology Assessment Act of 1971 (2 U.S.C. 472). The office received
funding for 1996 to conduct an orderly shutdown (tit. I, P.L. 104-53)
and has not received any funding since then.
Sec. 1122. Office of the
A Parliamentarian has been appointed by the Speaker in every Congress
since 1927. Before 1927 the ``Clerk at the Speaker's Table'' performed
the function of the Parliamentarian. In the 95th Congress the House
formally and permanently established an Office of the Parliamentarian to
be managed, supervised, and administered by a nonpartisan
Parliamentarian appointed by the Speaker (H. Res. 502, Apr. 20, 1977, p.
11415, made permanent law by sec. 115 of P.L. 95-94; see 2 U.S.C. 287).
The compilation and prepara
Sec. 1123. Office of Floor
At its organization the 104th Congress established an office to assist the
Speaker in the management of legislative activity on the floor of the
House (Sec. 223(b), H. Res. 6, 104th Cong., Jan. 4, 1995, p. 469,
enacted into permanent law by the Legislative Branch Appropriations Act,
1996 (sec. 103, P.L. 104-53)).
Sec. 1124. Office of Interparliamentary
This Office is responsible for responding to inquiries from, and
coordinating visits with, foreign legislative bodies; providing
assistance to delegations of Members on official visits to foreign
nations; coordinating the activities and responsibilities of the House
in connection with participation in various interparliamentary exchanges
and organizations; and enabling the House to host meetings with senior
government officials and other dignitaries in order to discuss matters
relevant to United States relations with other nations (2 U.S.C. 130-2).
Sec. 1125. House Recording Studio.
The House Recording
Studio was established by the Legislative Branch Appropriations Act,
1957 (2 U.S.C. 123b) and provides Members with audio and video recording
services. The studio is under the direction and control of the Committee
on the House Recording Studio, which consists of three members appointed
by the Speaker (2 U.S.C. 123b(c)).
Sec. 1125a. United States Capitol Preservation
The United States Capitol Preservation Commission was established in
1988 (2 U.S.C. 2081) to provide improvements in, preservation of, and
acquisitions for the Capitol and to provide works of fine art and other
property for display in the Capitol. In the 106th Congress the
Commission was given responsibility for the planning, engineering,
design, and construction of the Capitol Visitor Center (sec. 310,
Legislative Branch Appropriations Act, 2000). Membership on the
Commission consists of the Speaker, the President pro tempore (co-
chairmen), the chairman and vice chairman of the Joint Committee on the
Library, the chairmen and ranking minority members of the Committee on
Rules and Administration and the Committee on House Administration, the
Majority and Minority Leaders of the House and Senate, the chairmen of
the Commission on the Bicentennial of the Senate and the Commission of
the House of Representatives Bicentenary, two Members of the Senate, and
two Members of the House.
Sec. 1125b. Office of General Counsel.
The General Counsel
appointed under clause 8 of rule II is authorized by law to appear in
any proceeding before a State or Federal court (except the United States
Supreme Court) without compliance with admission requirements of such
court (2 U.S.C. 130f(a)). Furthermore, the law requires the Attorney
General to notify the General Counsel of its determination not to appeal
a court decision affecting the constitutionality of an Act (2 U.S.C
Sec. 1125c. Office of Emergency Planning,
Preparedness, and Operations.
This Office is responsible for mitigation and
preparedness operations, crisis management and response, resource
services, and recovery operations (2 U.S.C. 130i). The Speaker, in
consultation with the Minority Leader, provides policy direction for,
and oversight of, the Office. The Speaker may request the head of any
Federal department or agency to detail to the Office, on a reimbursable
basis, any of the personnel of the department or agency. The day-to-day
operations of the Office are carried out by the Director, under the
supervision of a Board, known as the House of Representatives Continuity
of Operations Board, comprising the Clerk, the Sergeant-at-Arms, and the
Chief Administrative Officer. The Clerk is the Chairman of the Board.
Sec. 1125d. Office of Attending Physician.
This Office was
established in the 70th Congress when the House requested the Secretary
of the Navy to detail a medical officer to be in attendance at the Hall
of the House during sessions of the House (H. Res. 253, Dec. 5, 1928, p.
----). Currently, the Office provides primary care and emergency,
environmental, and occupational health services in direct support of
Members of Congress and the Supreme Court, staff, pages, visiting
dignitaries, and tourists (Office of Attending Physician in the U.S.
Congress, CRS, Dec. 12, 2001).
Sec. 1125e. Office of Architect of the
This Office , which dates from 1793, operates and maintains the buildings
and grounds of the Capitol complex. For a detailed explanation of the
current duties and statutory evolution of the office, see Architect of
the Capitol: Appointment, Duties, and Operations, CRS, March 17, 2005.