Message to the Congress Transmitting the Annual Report on Federal Advisory Committees

June 20, 1984

To the Congress of the United States:

As provided by the Federal Advisory Committee Act, I am pleased to transmit the Twelfth Annual Report on Federal Advisory Committees.

In fiscal year 1983, Federal advisory committees contributed significant expertise to the discussion of important issues facing our Nation. With the assistance of these committees major initiatives were undertaken in areas such as social security reform, national security, and government efficiency. Other committees furnished valuable advice to Federal agencies concerned with scientific research, health programs, environmental issues, international diplomacy, as well as economic, social and cultural affairs.

Since 1981, Federal agencies have achieved substantial overall savings in advisory committee program costs while continuing to make active use of committees in the government decision-making process. These savings have been achieved without the sacrifice of the quality advice the agencies have required. The participation of the best possible members on a voluntary basis where possible, but on a compensatory basis where appropriate, must continue to be the goal. I plan to issue shortly a memorandum to Executive branch agencies providing further guidance to sustain and improve upon these accomplishments.

The efficient and selective use of advisory committees was one of the major objectives of the Congress in enacting the Federal Advisory Committee Act. I am particularly concerned that advisory committees be established only when they are necessary, that they be carefully supported and monitored during their existence, and that they be promptly terminated when their mission is completed.

I commend the members who have served on advisory committees and thank them for sharing their experience, knowledge and advice. Advisory committees can and have demonstrated the value of a continuing partnership between citizens and their government.

Ronald Reagan

The White House,

June 20, 1984.

Note: The 130-page report is entitled ``Federal Advisory Committees: Twelfth Annual Report of the President -- Fiscal Year 1983.''