WELCOME TO THE OFFICE OF LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL
Sheila Menz, Deputy General Counsel (Legislation)
Mission and Function
Deputy General Counsel (Legislation) leads the Office of Legislative Counsel (OLC) in DoD OGC, which is responsible for advising the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Legislative Affairs (ASD(LA)), as well as other components, on congressional oversight matters. It is the longstanding policy and practice of DoD to work to accommodate congressional oversight requests by committees of jurisdiction, and to be responsive to individual Members of Congress and other legislative branch entities such as the Government Accountability Office, when they seek information from the Department. OLC coordinates congressional requests for documents and interviews, and provides legal advice on responsiveness and potential assertions of privileges or confidentiality. OLC communicates with interagency lawyers to address interagency equities. Should there be potential privileges at issue, OLC will advise ASD(LA) and other senior leaders on how to work with Congress to reach a mutually beneficial solution.
Additionally, OLC manages DoD’s legislative program on behalf of ASD(LA) and DoD OGC. Each year, DoD puts forward numerous proposals for inclusion in the annual enactment of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA). Legislative proposals are initiated by DoD components, then evaluated within DoD and throughout the executive branch. Proposals that are approved by DoD, OMB, and White House Legislative Affairs are transmitted to the Hill with a formal request for enactment as part of the NDAA. The staff of OLC includes trained legislative drafters who review and revise the proposals, in coordination with their OGC colleagues, to ensure that each proposal is legally effective and can be incorporated into the NDAA without modification.
- DoD Directive 5500.01, Preparing, Processing, and Coordinating Legislation, Executive Orders, Proclamations, Views Letters, and Testimony (Reissued June 15, 2007)
- DoD Instruction 5400.04, Provision of Information to Congress
The Department of Defense Legislative Program
Department of Defense Testimony
How Can We Help You?
National Defense Authorization and Appropriations Acts
Other Sites of Interest
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