Federal Administrative Procedure Sourcebook

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A joint publication by the Administrative Conference of the United States and the American Bar Association’s Section of Administrative Law and Regulatory Practice

The Federal Administrative Procedure Sourcebook (Sourcebook) has been compiled as a basic introduction and reference resource on major federal procedural statutes. It provides access to statutory text along, explanatory material, legislative history, related guidance documents, and sources of additional relevant information.

The Sourcebook is designed to be useful for both lawyers and non-lawyers at federal agencies and for anyone who needs to know more about any of the key federal procedural statutes. While it is designed to be a convenient source of statutory, regulatory, and other materials, the commentary is not intended to be a substitute for legal research or for legal counsel. Readers with specific questions should consult the statute directly, judicial opinions, legislative history, or, if appropriate, the lead agency or their own attorney.

  1. Administrative Procedure Act
  2. Judicial Review of Agency Action
  3. Congressional Review of Agency Rulemaking
  4. White House Orders, Bulletins, and Memoranda
  5. Administrative Dispute Resolution Act
  6. Agency Practice Act
  7. Contract Disputes Act
  8. E-Government Act of 2002
  9. Equal Access to Justice Act
  10. Federal Advisory Committee Act
  11. Federal Register Act
  12. Federal Tort Claims Act
  13. Freedom of Information Act
  14. Government in the Sunshine Act
  15. Government Performance and Results Act
  16. Information Quality Act
  17. National Environmental Policy Act
  18. Negotiated Rulemaking Act
  19. Paperwork Reduction Act
  20. Privacy Act
  21. Regulatory Flexibility Act
  22. Unfunded Mandates Reform Act

Understanding the Structure of the Sourcebook

Though the Sourcebook’s organization is largely self-evident, a few preliminary comments may be valuable. These notes follow the format of most chapters:

  • Statutory Citations. This section includes U.S. Code, Public Law, and Statutes-at-Large citations, including significant amendments.
  • Lead Agency. This designation is a loose one, because a “lead” agency’s role may vary from informal consulting and data collection to issuance of binding regulations, from occasional technical guidance to regular oversight of specific activities. The Overview section usually elaborates on the lead agency’s role.
  • Overview. This section summarizes the content of the statute and its applicability. Any observations or conclusions represent only the judgment of the editors.
  • Bibliography. The Bibliography includes major works and other useful references.

Acknowledgements

William Funk and Jeffrey S. Lubbers served as the editors for several editions of the Sourcebook, including the most recent fifth edition. Their hard work on the Sourcebook has made this project possible.

William Funk is the Lewis & Clark Distinguished Professor of Law at Lewis & Clark Law School, where he teaches Administrative Law and Constitutional Law. A graduate of Harvard College, 1967, and Columbia Law School, 1973, Professor Funk clerked for Judge James Oakes of the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. Thereafter, he was an attorney-adviser in the Office of Legal Counsel in the U.S. Department of Justice, a principal staff member of the Legislation Subcommittee of the Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence of the U.S. House of Representatives, and an Assistant General Counsel in the U.S. Department of Energy.

Professor Funk has served as chair of both the American Bar Association’s Section of Administrative Law and Regulatory Practice and the Administrative Law Section of the Association of American Law Schools. He is currently the editor of Administrative Law Abstracts for the Social Science Research Network.

Professor Funk is a co-author of Administrative Procedure and Practice, published by West Group, now in its fifth edition, and of Administrative Law: Examples and Explanations, also in its fifth edition. In addition, he has published numerous articles on administrative law and is a frequent speaker on administrative law topics.

Jeffrey S. Lubbers has been Professor of Practice in Administrative Law at American University’s Washington College of Law since 2009, after being a Fellow in Law and Government since 1996. He has also taught at the University of Miami School of Law, Washington and Lee University School of Law, the Georgetown University Law Center, Melbourne University, Ritsumeikan University Law School in Japan (six summers), the University of Ottawa, and Australian National University. He has degrees from Cornell University and the University of Chicago Law School and is a member of the bars of the State of Maryland and the District of Columbia.

Prior to joining American University, he served in various positions at ACUS until its closure by the 104th agency Congress in 1995. From 1982 to 1995 he was ACUS’s Research Director—a position in the Senior Executive Service. (ACUS reopened in 2010 and he was appointed a Special Counsel.) He also served as team leader for Vice President Gore’s National Performance Review team on Improving Regulatory Systems in 1993. He co-authored ACUS’s major 1992 study, The Federal Administrative Judiciary, and was a contributing author of the first edition of the Guide to Federal Agency Rulemaking. He recently authored an updated fifth edition of the latter Guide, published by the American Bar Association in 2012. He served as editor for the ABA Section on Administrative Law and Regulatory Practice’s annual Developments in Administrative Law and Regulatory Practice volumes from 1998 to 2014 and has chaired the Administrative Law Section of the Association of American Law Schools.

Professor Lubbers has won several honors for his work in administrative law, including a Presidential Rank of Meritorious Executive, the Mary C. Lawton Award for Outstanding Government Service, the Chair’s Award for Outstanding Volunteer Service from the ABA Section on Administrative Law and Regulatory Practice, and the Walter Gellhorn Award from the Federal Bar Association.

Notes

Administrative Conference and ACUS Materials

ACUS is an independent federal agency in the executive branch, established in 1968 to advise and assist regulatory agencies and the Congress on administrative law and procedure. ACUS’s activities were curtailed in October 1995 as a result of the decision of the Appropriations Committees of the 104th Congress to terminate funding for its operations, see the Symposium devoted to ACUS in 30 Ariz. St. L.J. 1-204 (1998). However, ACUS was reauthorized and re-established in 2010, and its activities continue today.

ACUS recommendations and the reports relating to them were published by the Government Printing Office in the Recommendations and Reports of the Administrative Conference series. This series appeared as four multi-year compilations from 1968 to 1977 and annually thereafter through 1995. Conference recommendations were, upon adoption, published in the Federal Register and, until 1993, compiled annually in volume one of the Code of Federal Regulations. They continue to be published in the Federal Register. All ACUS reports and recommendations are available on the ACUS website. Bibliographies of all ACUS’s published works are also available on the website.

American Bar Association’s Section of Administrative Law and Regulatory Practice

The American Bar Association (ABA) promotes justice and the rule of law through work in Washington, DC and around the world. Administrative law issues are central to attorneys practicing in a wide range of substantive areas, but many lawyers think of themselves as, say, a securities lawyer, or an environmental lawyer, or a food and drug lawyer, rather than as an administrative lawyer. The ABA Section of Administrative Law and Regulatory Practice seeks to provide support, training, and contacts relevant to cross-cutting issues of administrative procedure and regulatory policy that all these lawyers can use but may not receive from entities focused on particular substantive areas.

Contact

If you have any questions regarding the Sourcebook, have recommendations on sources to include, or notice any errors (including broken links), please contact us at Sourcebook@acus.gov.