[United States Statutes at Large, Volume 124, 111th Congress, 2nd Session]
[From the U.S. Government Printing Office, www.gpo.gov]


Public Law 111-274
111th Congress

An Act


 
To enhance citizen access to Government information and services by
establishing that Government documents issued to the public must be
written clearly, and for other purposes. <>

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the
United States of America in Congress assembled, <>
SECTION 1. <> SHORT TITLE.

This Act may be cited as the ``Plain Writing Act of 2010''.
SEC. 2. <> PURPOSE.

The purpose of this Act is to improve the effectiveness and
accountability of Federal agencies to the public by promoting clear
Government communication that the public can understand and use.
SEC. 3. DEFINITIONS.

In this Act:
(1) Agency.--The term ``agency'' means an Executive agency,
as defined under section 105 of title 5, United States Code.
(2) Covered document.--The term ``covered document''--
(A) means any document that--
(i) is necessary for obtaining any Federal
Government benefit or service or filing taxes;
(ii) provides information about any Federal
Government benefit or service; or
(iii) explains to the public how to comply
with a requirement the Federal Government
administers or enforces;
(B) includes (whether in paper or electronic form) a
letter, publication, form, notice, or instruction; and
(C) does not include a regulation.
(3) Plain writing.--The term ``plain writing'' means writing
that is clear, concise, well-organized, and follows other best
practices appropriate to the subject or field and intended
audience.
SEC. 4. <> RESPONSIBILITIES OF FEDERAL
AGENCIES.

(a) Preparation for Implementation of Plain Writing Requirements.--
(1) In general.-- <> Not later than 9
months after the date of enactment of this Act, the head of each
agency shall--
(A) <> designate 1 or more
senior officials within the agency to oversee the agency
implementation of this Act;

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(B) communicate the requirements of this Act to the
employees of the agency;
(C) train employees of the agency in plain writing;
(D) establish a process for overseeing the ongoing
compliance of the agency with the requirements of this
Act;
(E) <> create and maintain a plain
writing section of the agency's website as required
under paragraph (2) that is accessible from the homepage
of the agency's website; and
(F) <> designate 1 or more
agency points-of-contact to receive and respond to
public input on--
(i) agency implementation of this Act; and
(ii) the agency reports required under section
5.
(2) Website.--The plain writing section described under
paragraph (1)(E) shall--
(A) inform the public of agency compliance with the
requirements of this Act; and
(B) <> provide a mechanism
for the agency to receive and respond to public input
on--
(i) agency implementation of this Act; and
(ii) the agency reports required under section
5.

(b) Requirement to Use Plain Writing in New Documents.--
<> Beginning not later than 1 year after the date
of enactment of this Act, each agency shall use plain writing in every
covered document of the agency that the agency issues or substantially
revises.

(c) Guidance.--
(1) In general.-- <> Not later than 6
months after the date of enactment of this Act, the Director of
the Office of Management and Budget shall develop and issue
guidance on implementing the requirements of this section. The
Director may designate a lead agency, and may use interagency
working groups to assist in developing and issuing the guidance.
(2) Interim guidance.--Before the issuance of guidance under
paragraph (1), agencies may follow the guidance of--
(A) the writing guidelines developed by the Plain
Language Action and Information Network; or
(B) guidance provided by the head of the agency that
is consistent with the guidelines referred to in
subparagraph (A).
SEC. 5. <> REPORTS TO CONGRESS.

(a) Initial Report.--Not later than 9 months after the date of
enactment of this Act, the head of each agency shall publish on the
plain writing section of the agency's website a report that describes
the agency plan for compliance with the requirements of this Act.
(b) Annual Compliance Report.--Not later than 18 months after the
date of enactment of this Act, and annually thereafter, the head of each
agency shall publish on the plain writing section of the agency's
website a report on agency compliance with the requirements of this Act.
SEC. 6. <> JUDICIAL REVIEW AND
ENFORCEABILITY.

(a) Judicial Review.--There shall be no judicial review of
compliance or noncompliance with any provision of this Act.

[[Page 2863]]

(b) Enforceability.--No provision of this Act shall be construed to
create any right or benefit, substantive or procedural, enforceable by
any administrative or judicial action.
SEC. 7. <> BUDGETARY EFFECTS OF PAYGO
LEGISLATION FOR THIS ACT.

The budgetary effects of this Act, for the purpose of complying
with the Statutory Pay-As-You-Go Act of 2010, shall be determined by
reference to the latest statement titled ``Budgetary Effects of PAYGO
Legislation'' for this Act, submitted for printing in the Congressional
Record by the Chairman of the House Budget Committee, provided that such
statement has been submitted prior to the vote on passage.

Approved October 13, 2010.

LEGISLATIVE HISTORY--H.R. 946:
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HOUSE REPORTS: No. 111-432 (Comm. on Oversight and Government Reform).
CONGRESSIONAL RECORD, Vol. 156 (2010):
Mar. 17, considered and passed House.
Sept. 27, considered and passed Senate, amended.
Sept. 29, House concurred in Senate amendments.