Salazar orders Minerals Management Service to split three ways

On Wednesday Interior Secretary Ken Salazar issued an executive order splitting the Minerals Management Service into three separate entities. The reorganization is intended to improve management and oversight of offshore drilling activities in the wake of the Deepwater Horizon rig explosion in the Gulf of Mexico last month.

The executive order creates the Ocean Energy Management bureau, which will be responsible for all conventional and renewable energy management functions, such as resource evaluation, planning and leasing.

The Safety and Environmental Enforcement bureau will be responsible for ensuring compliance with safety and environmental laws and regulations. It will have the authority to inspect, investigate, summon witnesses and produce evidence, levy penalties, cancel or suspend activities, and oversee safety and response activities.

Both bureaus will be under the supervision of the assistant secretary for land and minerals management.

A third entity, the Office of Natural Resources Revenue, will be overseen by the assistant secretary for policy, management and budget. All onshore and offshore royalty and revenue management activities will be transferred to the new office, including collection, distribution, auditing, compliance, investigation and enforcement, and asset management functions.

MMS collects about $13 billion annually on behalf of taxpayers, mostly in royalties from oil and gas leases.

The two senior Interior Department executives responsible for land and minerals management; and policy, management and budget have 30 days to come up with a plan for implementing the order in consultation with the White House and key congressional committees.

"The employees of the MMS deserve an organizational structure that fits the missions they are asked to carry out," Salazar said Wednesday. "With this restructuring, we will bring greater clarity to the roles and responsibilities of the department while strengthening oversight of the companies that develop energy in our nation's waters."

Stay up-to-date with federal news alerts and analysis — Sign up for GovExec's email newsletters.
Close [ x ] More from GovExec

Thank you for subscribing to newsletters from
We think these reports might interest you:

  • Forecasting Cloud's Future

    Conversations with Federal, State, and Local Technology Leaders on Cloud-Driven Digital Transformation

  • The Big Data Campaign Trail

    With everyone so focused on security following recent breaches at federal, state and local government and education institutions, there has been little emphasis on the need for better operations. This report breaks down some of the biggest operational challenges in IT management and provides insight into how agencies and leaders can successfully solve some of the biggest lingering government IT issues.

  • Communicating Innovation in Federal Government

    Federal Government spending on ‘obsolete technology’ continues to increase. Supporting the twin pillars of improved digital service delivery for citizens on the one hand, and the increasingly optimized and flexible working practices for federal employees on the other, are neither easy nor inexpensive tasks. This whitepaper explores how federal agencies can leverage the value of existing agency technology assets while offering IT leaders the ability to implement the kind of employee productivity, citizen service improvements and security demanded by federal oversight.

  • IT Transformation Trends: Flash Storage as a Strategic IT Asset

    MIT Technology Review: Flash Storage As a Strategic IT Asset For the first time in decades, IT leaders now consider all-flash storage as a strategic IT asset. IT has become a new operating model that enables self-service with high performance, density and resiliency. It also offers the self-service agility of the public cloud combined with the security, performance, and cost-effectiveness of a private cloud. Download this MIT Technology Review paper to learn more about how all-flash storage is transforming the data center.

  • Ongoing Efforts in Veterans Health Care Modernization

    This report discusses the current state of veterans health care


When you download a report, your information may be shared with the underwriters of that document.