The United States Department of the Interior (DOI) is a federal executive department of the U.S. government. It is responsible for the management and conservation of most federal lands and natural resources, and the administration of programs relating to Native Americans, Alaska Natives, Native Hawaiians, territorial affairs, and insular areas of the United States. About 75% of federal public land is managed by the department, with most of the remainder managed by the United States Department of Agriculture's United States Forest Service.
The department is administered by the United States secretary of the interior, who is a member of the Cabinet of the president. The current secretary is David Bernhardt, who previously served in the Department as deputy secretary. The inspector general position is currently held by Mary Kendall, who is serving as acting inspector general.
Despite its name, the Department of the Interior has a different role from that of the interior ministries of other nations, which are usually responsible for police matters and internal security. In the United States, national security and immigration functions are performed by the Department of Homeland Security primarily and the Department of Justice secondarily.
The Department of the Interior has often been humorously called "The Department of Everything Else" because of its broad range of responsibilities.
|United States Department of the Interior|
Seal of the U.S. Department of the Interior
Flag of the U.S. Department of the Interior
Main Interior Building
|Formed||March 3, 1849|
|Headquarters||Main Interior Building|
1849 C Street NW
Washington, D.C., U.S.
|Annual budget||$20.7 billion (2013)|
A department for domestic concern was first considered by the 1st United States Congress in 1789, but those duties were placed in the Department of State. The idea of a separate domestic department continued to percolate for a half-century and was supported by presidents from James Madison to James Polk. The 1846–48 Mexican–American War gave the proposal new steam as the responsibilities of the federal government grew. Polk's Secretary of the Treasury, Robert J. Walker, became a vocal champion of creating the new department.
In 1849, Walker stated in his annual report that several federal offices were placed in departments with which they had little to do. He noted that the General Land Office had little to do with the Treasury and also highlighted the Indian Affairs office, part of the Department of War, and the Patent Office, part of the Department of State. Walker argued that these and other bureaus should be brought together in a new Department of the Interior. A bill authorizing its creation of the department passed the House of Representatives on February 15, 1849, and spent just over two weeks in the Senate. The department was established on March 3, 1849 (9 Stat. 395), the eve of President Zachary Taylor's inauguration, when the Senate voted 31 to 25 to create the department. Its passage was delayed by Democrats in Congress who were reluctant to create more patronage posts for the incoming Whig administration to fill. The first Secretary of the Interior was Thomas Ewing.
Many of the domestic concerns the department originally dealt with were gradually transferred to other departments. For example, the Department of Interior was responsible for water pollution control prior to the creation of the EPA. Other agencies became separate departments, such as the Bureau of Agriculture, which later became the Department of Agriculture. However, land and natural resource management, American Indian affairs, wildlife conservation, and territorial affairs remain the responsibilities of the Department of the Interior.
As of mid-2004, the department managed 507 million acres (2,050,000 km²) of surface land, or about one-fifth of the land in the United States. It manages 476 dams and 348 reservoirs through the Bureau of Reclamation, 410 national parks, monuments, seashore sites, etc. through the National Park Service, and 544 national wildlife refuges through the Fish and Wildlife Service.
Within the Interior Department, the Bureau of Indian Affairs handles some federal relations with Native Americans, while others are handled by the Office of Special Trustee. The current acting assistant secretary for Indian affairs is Lawrence S. Roberts, an enrolled member of the Oneida Tribe in Wisconsin.
The department has been the subject of disputes over proper accounting for Native American Trusts set up to track the income and distribution of monies that are generated by the trust and specific Native American lands, which the government leases for fees to companies that extract oil, timber, minerals, and other resources. Several cases have sought an accounting of such funds from departments within the Interior and Treasury (such as the Minerals Management Service), in what has been a 15-year-old lawsuit. Some Native American nations have also sued the government over water-rights issues and their treaties with the US. In 2010 Congress passed the Claims Settlement Act of 2010 (Public Law 111-291), which provided $3.4 billion for the settlement of the Cobell v. Salazar class-action trust case and four Native American water rights cases.
The $3.4 billion will be placed in a still-to-be-selected bank and $1.4 billion will go to individuals, mostly in the form of checks ranging from $500 to $1,500. A small group, such as members of the Osage tribe who benefit from huge Oklahoma oil revenues, will get far more, based on a formula incorporating their 10 highest years of income between 1985 and 2009. As important, $2 billion will be used to buy trust land from Native American owners at fair market prices, with the government finally returning the land to tribes. Nobody can be forced to sell.
Secretary of the Interior Albert B. Fall was implicated in the Teapot Dome scandal of 1921. He was convicted of bribery in 1929, and served one year in prison, for his part in the controversy. A major factor in the scandal was a transfer of certain oil leases from the jurisdiction of the Department of the Navy to that of the Department of the Interior, at Fall's behest.
Secretary of the Interior James G. Watt—already facing criticism related to his alleged hostility to environmentalism and his support of the development and use of federal lands by foresting, ranching, and other commercial interests, and for banning The Beach Boys from playing a 1983 Independence Day concert on the National Mall out of concerns of attracting "an undesirable element"—resigned abruptly after a September 21, 1983, speech in which he said about his staff: "I have a black, a woman, two Jews and a cripple. And we have talent." Within weeks of making this statement, Watt submitted his resignation letter.
Under the Administration of President George W. Bush, the Interior Department's maintenance backlog climbed from $5 billion to $8.7 billion, despite Bush's campaign pledges to eliminate it completely. Of the agency under Bush's leadership, Interior Department Inspector General Earl Devaney has cited a "culture of fear" and of "ethical failure." Devaney has also said, "Simply stated, short of a crime, anything goes at the highest levels of the Department of Interior."
Areas of Critical Environmental Concern (ACEC) is a conservation ecology program in the Western United States, managed by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM). The ACEC program was conceived in the 1976 Federal Lands Policy and Management Act (FLPMA), which established the first conservation ecology mandate for the BLM. The FLPMA mandate directs the BLM to protect important riparian corridors, threatened and endangered species habitats, cultural and archeological resources, as well as unique scenic landscapes that the agency assesses as in need of special management attention.Arlington House, The Robert E. Lee Memorial
Arlington House, The Robert E. Lee Memorial, formerly named the Custis-Lee Mansion, is a Greek revival style mansion located in Arlington, Virginia, United States that was once the home of Confederate Army General Robert E. Lee. It overlooks the Potomac River and the National Mall in Washington, D.C. During the American Civil War, the grounds of the mansion were selected as the site of Arlington National Cemetery, in part to ensure that Lee would never again be able to return to his home. The United States has since designated the mansion as a National Memorial.
Although the United States Department of the Army controls Arlington National Cemetery, the National Park Service, a component of the United States Department of the Interior, administers Arlington House.Bureau of Ocean Energy Management
The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) is an agency within the United States Department of the Interior, established in 2010 by Secretarial Order.The Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act (OCSLA) states: "...the outer Continental Shelf is a vital national resource reserve held by the Federal Government for the public, which should be made available for expeditious and orderly development, subject to environmental safeguards, in a manner which is consistent with the maintainence [sic] of competition and other national needs."BOEM and its sister agency, the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement are the agencies to which this responsibility is delegated. They exercise the oil, gas, and renewable energy-related management functions formerly under the purview of the Minerals Management Service (MMS). Specifically, BOEM activities involve resource evaluation, planning, and leasing.Bureau of Pensions
The Bureau of Pensions was an agency of the federal government of the United States which existed from 1832 to 1930. It originally administered pensions solely for military personnel. Pension duties were transferred to the United States Department of the Interior in 1849. The death of many pensioners in the early 1900s greatly reduced the agency's workload. The agency closed in 1930 when its duties were transferred to the Veterans Administration.James V. McClintic
James Vernon McClintic (September 8, 1878 – April 22, 1948) was an American politician and a U.S. Representative from Oklahoma.List of Colorado trails
The following are partial lists of significant historic, scenic, and recreational trails in the State of Colorado of the United States.List of plantations in West Virginia
Plantations that operated within the present-day boundaries of West Virginia were located in the counties of the Ridge-and-Valley Appalachians and in the Kanawha and Ohio River valley regions. Beginning in the mid-to-late 18th century, members of the Washington family and other prominent Virginia families began to build elegant Georgian mansions on their plantations in the Ridge-and-Valley Appalachians region of present-day West Virginia. Plantations initially developed in the counties lying within the Northern Neck Proprietary of Thomas Fairfax, 6th Lord Fairfax of Cameron within the Shenandoah Valley and South Branch Potomac River valleys. Slavery as practiced through plantations in the American South was carried over from the plantations of the Piedmont and Tidewater regions of Virginia, where plantations had become the foundation of society and industry. Following the French and Indian War, settlement and agricultural development continued unabated in the Shenandoah and South Branch Potomac valleys. Early instances of western Virginia plantations with grand homes include the John Ariss-designed Harewood (1774) for George Washington's brother Samuel Washington and Happy Retreat (1780) built by Washington's younger brother Charles Washington, both of which are located near Charles Town in present-day Jefferson County. In Hampshire County, Nicholas Casey constructed a Georgian mansion (1774) at his Wappocomo plantation, one of the first plantation houses of its kind in the South Branch Potomac River valley.Plantations continued to develop along the fringes of present-day West Virginia. By the close of the 18th century, Harman Blennerhassett had constructed a mansion on his plantation on Blennerhassett Island and Moses Shepherd had built Shepherd Hall near Wheeling, both in the Ohio River valley. Despite the agricultural development of then western Virginia's bottomlands and the resulting wealth of the plantation owners, the hinterlands of the Allegheny Mountains and Allegheny Plateau regions remained underpopulated and inhabited by subsistence farmers of meager means into the middle of the 19th century. By the 1860 United States Census, Berkeley, Greenbrier, Hampshire, Hardy, Jefferson, Kanawha, and Monroe counties consequently had the largest populations of slaves in present-day West Virginia.The economic and political differences between western and eastern Virginia began to grow. Following Virginia's secession from the Union in 1861, the Restored Government of Virginia was established at Wheeling during the American Civil War. Despite West Virginia receiving Union statehood on June 20, 1863, sympathies and loyalties within the state's borders remained divided, especially within areas economically dependent upon the plantation system. However, slaveowners in western Virginia tended to own fewer slaves than their counterparts in eastern Virginia and many did not support Virginia's secession. In Mason County, where small farms were reliant upon slavery, its residents overwhelmingly supported the Union cause. During the war, many plantations in West Virginia served as preferred venues for military headquarters and meeting places for both Union and Confederate military officers due to their adequate accommodations and resources. Altona near Charles Town was utilized as a military headquarters and meeting place for Union generals Philip Sheridan and Ulysses S. Grant, with Sheridan making use of the farm's horses and carriage. Other plantations, like Mill Island and Willow Wall near Moorefield, and Elmwood near Shepherdstown, were utilized as hospitals for wounded soldiers and irregulars.In anticipation of the passage of the Thirteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution, the West Virginia Legislature at Wheeling passed an act abolishing slavery in West Virginia on February 3, 1865, thus ending the institution of the plantation in West Virginia. Since the 1960s, many of West Virginia's plantation houses have acquired places on the National Register of Historic Places, the United States government's official list of sites, buildings, and structures deemed worthy of preservation. The house at Traveller's Rest, near Kearneysville, is West Virginia's sole plantation house designated as a National Historic Landmark for its national-level historical significance. As of 2015, the majority of West Virginia's plantation houses remain under private ownership.List of public art in Washington, D.C., Ward 2
This is a list of public art in Ward 2 of Washington, D.C..
This list applies only to works of public art accessible in an outdoor public space. For example, this does not include artwork visible inside a museum.
Most of the works mentioned are sculptures. When this is not the case (i.e. sound installation, for example) it is stated next to the title.National monument (United States)
In the United States, a national monument is a protected area that is similar to a national park, but can be created from any land owned or controlled by the federal government by proclamation of the President of the United States.
National monuments can be managed by one of several federal agencies: the National Park Service, United States Forest Service, United States Fish and Wildlife Service, the Bureau of Land Management, or the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (in the case of marine national monuments). Historically, some national monuments were managed by the War Department.National monuments can be so designated through the power of the Antiquities Act of 1906. President Theodore Roosevelt used the act to declare Devils Tower in Wyoming as the first U.S. national monument.Office of Natural Resources Revenue
The Office of Natural Resources Revenue (ONRR) is a unit of the United States Department of the Interior, established by Secretarial Order. The new office exercises the royalty and revenue management functions formerly under the Minerals Management Service, including royalty and revenue collection, distribution, auditing and compliance, investigation and enforcement, and asset management for both onshore and offshore activities.Office of Surface Mining
The Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement (OSMRE) is a branch of the United States Department of the Interior. It is the federal agency entrusted with the implementation and enforcement of the Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act of 1977 (SMCRA), which attached a per-ton fee to all extracted coal in order to fund an interest-accruing trust to be used for reclamation of abandoned mine lands, as well as established a set environmental standards that mines must follow while operating, and achieve when reclaiming mined land, in order to minimize environmental impact. OSMRE has about 500 employees, who work in either the national office in Washington, DC, or of the many regional and field offices(OSM's Three Regions).
OSM has three main functions:
Regulating active mines
Reclaiming lands damaged by surface mining and abandoned mines
Providing resources for technical assistance, training, and technology development Sylvia Baca
Sylvia V. Baca is an American government official. She was appointed by Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar to the position of Deputy Assistant Secretary for Land and Minerals Management on June 18, 2009. Baca, a former employee of BP Oil, was the general manager for Social Investment Programs and Strategic Partnerships at BP America, Inc. As part of her duties at the United States Department of the Interior she oversees the Bureau of Land Management and the Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement.
Baca has a master's degree in Public Administration and Finance from the University of New Mexico. She has received advanced management training at the University of Cambridge, Rice University's School of Management and Stanford's Graduate School of Business Education. Among her many honors and awards, Baca received the Distinguished Alumni in Career Achievement from the University of New Mexico in 2008. Baca held several senior positions within New Mexico state and local government, including director of Finance and Management for the City of Albuquerque, Senior Fiscal Analyst with the Legislative Finance Committee and director of the New Mexico Minority and Small-Business Development program.United States Board on Geographic Names
The United States Board on Geographic Names (BGN) is a federal body operating under the United States Secretary of the Interior. The purpose of the board is to establish and maintain uniform usage of geographic names throughout the federal government of the United States.United States Bureau of Mines
For most of the 20th century, the United States Bureau of Mines (USBM) was the primary United States government agency conducting scientific research and disseminating information on the extraction, processing, use, and conservation of mineral resources. The Bureau was abolished in 1996.United States Bureau of Reclamation
The United States Bureau of Reclamation (USBR), and formerly the United States Reclamation Service (not to be confused with the Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement), is a federal agency under the U.S. Department of the Interior, which oversees water resource management, specifically as it applies to the oversight and operation of the diversion, delivery, and storage projects that it has built throughout the western United States for irrigation, water supply, and attendant hydroelectric power generation. Currently the USBR is the largest wholesaler of water in the country, bringing water to more than 31 million people, and providing one in five Western farmers with irrigation water for 10 million acres of farmland, which produce 60% of the nation's vegetables and 25% of its fruits and nuts. The USBR is also the second largest producer of hydroelectric power in the western United States.On June 17, 1902, in accordance with the Reclamation Act, Secretary of the Interior Ethan Allen Hitchcock established the U.S. Reclamation Service within the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS). The new Reclamation Service studied potential water development projects in each western state with federal lands—revenue from sale of federal lands was the initial source of the program's funding. Because Texas had no federal lands, it did not become a Reclamation state until 1906, when Congress passed a law including it in the provisions of the Reclamation Act.United States Fish and Wildlife Service
The United States Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS or FWS) is an agency of the US federal government within the US Department of the Interior dedicated to the management of fish, wildlife, and natural habitats. The mission of the agency is "working with others to conserve, protect, and enhance fish, wildlife, plants and their habitats for the continuing benefit of the American people."
Aurelia Skipwith is current President Donald Trump's nominee.Among the responsibilities of the FWS are enforcing federal wildlife laws; protecting endangered species; managing migratory birds; restoring nationally significant fisheries; conserving and restoring wildlife habitat, such as wetlands; helping foreign governments with their international conservation efforts; and distributing money to states' fish and wildlife agencies through the Wildlife Sport Fish and Restoration Program.Sub-units of the FWS include:
National Wildlife Refuge System—560 National Wildlife Refuges and thousands of small wetlands and other special management areas covering over 150 million acres (607,000 km²)
Division of Migratory Bird Management
Federal Duck Stamp
National Fish Hatchery System—70 National Fish Hatcheries and 65 Fish and Wildlife Conservation Offices
Endangered Species program—86 Ecological Services Field Stations
International Affairs Program
National Conservation Training Center
USFWS Office of Law Enforcement
Clark R. Bavin National Fish and Wildlife Forensic Laboratory
Landscape Conservation CooperativesThe vast majority of fish and wildlife habitat is on non-federal state or private land. Therefore, the FWS works closely with private groups such as Partners in Flight and Sport Fishing and Boating Partnership Council to promote voluntary habitat conservation and restoration.
The FWS employs approximately 9,000 people and is organized into a central administrative office in Falls Church, Virginia, eight regional offices, and nearly 700 field offices distributed throughout the United States.United States Geological Survey
The United States Geological Survey (USGS, formerly simply Geological Survey) is a scientific agency of the United States government. The scientists of the USGS study the landscape of the United States, its natural resources, and the natural hazards that threaten it. The organization has four major science disciplines, concerning biology, geography, geology, and hydrology. The USGS is a fact-finding research organization with no regulatory responsibility.
The USGS is a bureau of the United States Department of the Interior; it is that department's sole scientific agency. The USGS employs approximately 8,670 people and is headquartered in Reston, Virginia. The USGS also has major offices near Lakewood, Colorado, at the Denver Federal Center, and Menlo Park, California.
The current motto of the USGS, in use since August 1997, is "science for a changing world". The agency's previous slogan, adopted on the occasion of its hundredth anniversary, was "Earth Science in the Public Service".United States Secretary of the Interior
The United States secretary of the interior is the head of the United States Department of the Interior. The Department of the Interior in the United States is responsible for the management and conservation of most federal land and natural resources; it oversees such agencies as the Bureau of Land Management, the United States Geological Survey, and the National Park Service. The secretary also serves on and appoints the private citizens on the National Park Foundation board. The secretary is a member of the president's Cabinet. The U.S. Department of the Interior should not be confused with the Ministries of the Interior as used in many other countries. Ministries of the Interior in these other countries correspond primarily to the Department of Homeland Security in the U.S. Cabinet and secondarily to the Department of Justice.
Because the policies and activities of the Department of the Interior and many of its agencies have a substantial impact in the Western United States, the Secretary of the Interior has typically come from a western state; only three of the individuals to hold the office since 1949 have not been from a state lying west of the Mississippi River. The current interior secretary is David Bernhardt, who held the office in an acting capacity until April 2019. He succeeded Ryan Zinke who resigned on January 2, 2019.
Agencies under the United States Department of the Interior
|Department of the Interior|
|Department of Commerce|
|Department of Energy|
|Department of Agriculture|
|Department of Homeland Security|
|Department of Health |
and Human Services
|Department of Defense|