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Executive Order 13748—Establishing a Community Solutions Council

November 16, 2016

By the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, it is hereby ordered as follows:

Section 1. Policy. Place is a strong determinant of opportunity and well-being. Research shows that the neighborhood in which a child grows up impacts his or her odds of going to college, enjoying good health, and obtaining a lifetime of economic opportunities. Even after 73 consecutive months of total job growth since 2009, communities of persistent poverty remain and for far too many, the odds are stacked against opportunity and achieving the American dream. In addition, between now and 2050, growing our economy, expected population growth, climate change, and demographic shifts will require major new investments in physical, social, and technological infrastructure.

Specific challenges in communities—including crime, access to care, opportunities to pursue quality education, lack of housing options, unemployment, and deteriorating infrastructure—can be met by leveraging Federal assistance and resources. While the Federal Government provides rural, suburban, urban, and tribal communities with significant investments in aid annually, coordinating these investments, as appropriate, across agencies based on locally led visions can more effectively reach communities of greatest need to maximize impact. In recent years, the Federal Government has deepened its engagement with communities, recognizing the critical role of these partnerships in enabling Americans to live healthier and more prosperous lives. Since 2015, the Community Solutions Task Force, comprising executive departments, offices, and agencies (agencies) across the Federal Government, has served as the primary interagency coordinator of agency work to engage with communities to deliver improved outcomes. This order builds on recent work to facilitate inter-agency and community-level collaboration to meet the unique needs of communities in a way that reflects these communities' local assets, economies, geography, size, history, strengths, talent networks, and visions for the future.

Sec. 2. Principles. Our effort to modernize the Federal Government's work with communities is rooted in the following principles:

(a) A community-driven, locally led vision and long-term plan for clear outcomes should guide individual projects.

(b) The Federal Government should coordinate its efforts at the Federal, regional, State, local, tribal, and community level, and with cross-sector partners, to offer a more seamless process for communities to access needed support and ensure equitable investments.

(c) The Federal Government should help communities identify, develop, and share local solutions, rely on data to determine what does and does not work, and harness technology and modern collaboration and engagement methods to help share these solutions and help communities meet their local goals.

Sec. 3. Community Solutions Council.

(a) Establishment. There is hereby established a Council for Community Solutions (Council), led by two Co-Chairs. One Co-Chair will be an Assistant to the President or the Director of the Office of Management and Budget, as designated by the President. The second Co-Chair will be rotated every 4 years and designated by the President from among the heads of the Departments of Justice, Agriculture, Commerce, Labor, Health and Human Services, Housing and Urban Development, Transportation, and Education, and the Environmental Protection Agency (Agency Co-Chair).

(b) Membership. The Council shall consist of the following members:

(i) the Secretary of State;

(ii) the Secretary of the Treasury;

(iii) the Secretary of Defense;

(iv) the Attorney General;

(v) the Secretary of the Interior;

(vi) the Secretary of Agriculture;

(vii) the Secretary of Commerce;

(viii) the Secretary of Labor;

(ix) the Secretary of Health and Human Services;

(x) the Secretary of Housing and Urban Development;

(xi) the Secretary of Transportation;

(xii) the Secretary of Energy;

(xiii) the Secretary of Education;

(xiv) the Secretary of Veterans Affairs;

(xv) the Secretary of Homeland Security;

(xvi) the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency;

(xvii) the Administrator of General Services;

(xviii) the Administrator of the Small Business Administration;

(xix) the Chief Executive Officer of the Corporation for National and Community Service;

(xx) the Chairperson of the National Endowment for the Arts;

(xxi) the Director of the Institute for Museum and Library Services;

(xxii) the Federal Co-Chair of the Delta Regional Authority;

(xxiii) the Federal Co-Chair of the Appalachian Regional Commission;

(xxiv) the Director of the Office of Personnel Management;

(xxv) the Director of the Office of Management and Budget;

(xxvi) the Chair of the Council of Economic Advisers;

(xxvii) the Assistant to the President for Intergovernmental Affairs and Public Engagement; (xxviii) the Assistant to the President and Cabinet Secretary;

(xxix) the Assistant to the President for Economic Policy and Director of the National Economic Council;

(xxx) the Chair of the Council on Environmental Quality;

(xxxi) the Director of the Office of Science and Technology Policy;

(xxxii) the Assistant to the President and Chief Technology Officer;

(xxxiii) the Administrator of the United States Digital Service; and

(xxxiv) other officials, as the Co-Chairs may designate or invite to participate.

(c) Administration.

(i) The President will designate one of the Co-Chairs to appoint or designate, as appropriate, an Executive Director, who shall coordinate the Council's activities. The department, agency, or component within the Executive Office of the President in which the Executive Director is appointed or designated, as appropriate, (funding entity) shall provide funding and administrative support for the Council to the extent permitted by law and within existing appropriations as may be necessary for the performance of its functions.

(ii) To the extent permitted by law, including the Economy Act, and within existing appropriations, participating agencies may detail staff to the funding entity to support the Council's coordination and implementation efforts.

(iii) The Co-Chairs shall convene regular meetings of the Council, determine its agenda, and direct its work. At the direction of the Co-Chairs, the Council may establish subgroups consisting exclusively of Council members or their designees, as appropriate.

(iv) A member of the Council may designate a senior-level official who is part of the member's department, agency, or office to perform the Council functions of the member.

Sec. 4. Mission and Priorities of the Council. (a) The Council shall foster collaboration across agencies, policy councils, and offices to coordinate actions, identify working solutions to share broadly, and develop and implement policy recommendations that put the community-driven, locally led vision at the center of policymaking. The Council shall:

(i) Work across agencies to coordinate investments in initiatives and practices that align the work of the Federal Government to have the greatest impact on the lives of individuals and communities.

(ii) Use evidence-based practices in policymaking, including identifying existing solutions, scaling up practices that are working, and designing solutions with regular input of the individuals and communities to be served.

(iii) Invest in recruiting, training, and retaining talent to further the effective delivery of services to individuals and communities and empower them with best-practice community engagement options, open government transparency methods, equitable policy approaches, technical assistance and capacity building tools, and data-driven practice.

(b) Consistent with the principles set forth in this order and in accordance with applicable law, including the Federal Advisory Committee Act, the Council should conduct outreach to representatives of nonprofit organizations, civil rights organizations, businesses, labor and professional organizations, start-up and entrepreneurial communities, State, local, and tribal government agencies, school districts, youth, elected officials, seniors, faith and other community-based organizations, philanthropies, technologists, other institutions of local importance, and other interested or affected persons with relevant expertise in the expansion and improvement of efforts to build local capacity, ensure equity, and address economic, social, environmental, and other issues in communities or regions.

Sec. 5. Executive Orders 13560 and 13602, and Building Upon Other Efforts. This order supersedes Executive Order 13560 of December 14, 2010 (White House Council for Community Solutions), and Executive Order 13602 of March 15, 2012 (Establishing a White House Council on Strong Cities, Strong Communities), which are hereby revoked.

This Council builds on existing efforts involving Federal working groups, task forces, memoranda of agreement, and initiatives, including the Community Solutions Task Force, the Federal Working Groups dedicated to supporting the needs and priorities of local leadership in Detroit, Baltimore, and Pine Ridge; the Interagency Working Group on Environmental Justice; the Partnership for Sustainable Communities; Local Foods, Local Places; Performance Partnership Pilots for Disconnected Youth; Empowerment Zones; StrikeForce; Partnerships for Opportunity and Workforce and Economic Revitalization; the Neighborhood Revitalization Initiative; Climate Action Champions; Better Communities Alliance; Investing in Manufacturing Communities Partnership; Promise Zones; and the 2016 Memorandum of Agreement on Interagency Technical Assistance. The Council shall also coordinate with existing Chief Officer Councils across the government with oversight responsibility for human capital, performance improvement, and financial assistance.

Sec. 6. General Provisions. (a) Nothing in this order shall be construed to impair or otherwise affect:

(i) the authority granted by law to an executive department, agency, or the head thereof, or the status of that department or agency within the Federal Government; or

(ii) the functions of the Director of the Office of Management and Budget relating to budgetary, administrative, or legislative proposals.

(b) This order shall be implemented consistent with applicable law and subject to the availability of appropriations.

(c) This order is not intended to, and does not, create any right or benefit, substantive or procedural, enforceable at law or in equity by any party against the United States, its departments, agencies, or entities, its officers, employees, or agents, or any other person.


The White House,

November 16, 2016.

NOTE: This Executive order was published in the Federal Register on November 21.

Barack Obama, Executive Order 13748—Establishing a Community Solutions Council Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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