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Office of the Press Secretary

For Immediate Release March 4, 1997



By the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, including the Federal Advisory Committee Act, as amended (5 U.S.C. App.), it is hereby ordered as follows:

Section 1. Establishment. There is established the Commission to Study Capital Budgeting ("Commission"). The Commission shall be bipartisan and shall be composed of 11 members appointed by the President. The members of the Commission shall be chosen from among individuals with expertise in public and private finance, government officials, and leaders in the labor and business communities. The President shall designate two co-chairs from among the members of the Commission.

Sec. 2. Functions. The Commission shall report on the following:

       (a)  Capital budgeting practices in other countries, in 
            State and local governments in this country, and in 
            the private sector; the differences and similarities 
            in their capital budgeting concepts and processes; and 
            the pertinence of their capital budgeting practices 
            for budget decisionmaking and accounting for actual 
            budget outcomes by the Federal Government;
       (b)  The appropriate definition of capital for Federal 
            budgeting, including:  use of capital for the Federal 
            Government itself or the economy at large; ownership 
            by the Federal Government or some other entity; 
            defense and nondefense capital; physical capital 
            and intangible or human capital; distinctions among 
            investments in and for current, future, and retired 
            workers; distinctions between capital to increase 
            productivity and capital to enhance the quality 
            of life; and existing definitions of capital 
            for budgeting;
       (c)  The role of depreciation in capital budgeting, 
            and the concept and measurement of depreciation 
            for purposes of a Federal capital budget; and
       (d)  The effect of a Federal capital budget on budgetary 
            choices between capital and noncapital means of 
            achieving public objectives; implications for 
            macroeconomic stability; and potential mechanisms 
            for budgetary discipline.
       Sec. 3.  Report.  The Commission shall adopt its report 

through majority vote of its full membership. The Commission shall report to the National Economic Council by March 15, 1998, or within 1 year from its first meeting.

Sec. 4. Administration. (a) Members of the Commission shall serve without compensation for their work on the Commission. While engaged in the work of the Commission, members appointed from among private citizens of the United States may be allowed travel expenses, including per diem in lieu of subsistence, as authorized by law for persons serving intermittently in the Government service (5 U.S.C. 5701-5707).

(b) The Department of the Treasury shall provide the Commission with funding and administrative support. The Commission may have a paid staff, including detailees from Federal agencies. The Secretary of the Treasury shall perform the functions of the President under the Federal Advisory Committee Act, as amended (5 U.S.C. App.), except that of reporting to the Congress, in accordance with the guidelines and procedures established by the Administrator of General Services.

Sec. 5. General Provisions. The Commission shall terminate 30 days after submitting its report.


                        THE WHITE HOUSE,
                        March 3, 1997.

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