15 U.S. Code §41. Federal Trade Commission established; membership; vacancies; seal

Section Text

A commission is created and established, to be known as the Federal Trade Commission (hereinafter referred to as the Commission), which shall be composed of five Commissioners, who shall be appointed by the President, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate. Not more than three of the Commissioners shall be members of the same political party. The first Commissioners appointed shall continue in office for terms of three, four, five, six, and seven years, respectively, from September 26, 1914, the term of each to be designated by the President, but their successors shall be appointed for terms of seven years, except that any person chosen to fill a vacancy shall be appointed only for the unexpired term of the Commissioner whom he shall succeed: Provided, however, That upon the expiration of his term of office a Commissioner shall continue to serve until his successor shall have been appointed and shall have qualified..1 The President shall choose a chairman from the Commission’s membership. No Commissioner shall engage in any other business, vocation, or employment. Any Commissioner may be removed by the President for inefficiency, neglect of duty, or malfeasance in office. A vacancy in the Commission shall not impair the right of the remaining Commissioners to exercise all the powers of the Commission.

The Commission shall have an official seal, which shall be judicially noticed.

Editorial Notes

SECTION 1. AUTHORITY TO DELEGATE (a) In addition to its existing authority, the Federal Trade Commission, hereinafter referred to as the "Commission", shall have the authority to delegate, by published order or rule, any of its functions to a division of the Commission, an individual Commissioner, a hearing examiner, or an employee or employee board, including functions with respect to hearing, determining, ordering, certifying, reporting or otherwise acting as to any work, business, or matter; Provided, however, That nothing herein contained shall be deemed to supersede the provisions of section 7(a) of the Administrative Procedure Act (60 Stat. 241), as amended [see 5 U.S.C. 556]. (b) With respect to the delegation of any of its functions, as provided in subsection (a) of this section, the Commission shall retain a discretionary right to review the action of any such division of the Commission, individual Commissioner, hearing examiner, employee or employee board, upon its own initiative or upon petition of a party to or an intervenor in such action, within such time and in such manner as the Commission shall by rule prescribe: Provided, however, That the vote of a majority of the Commission less one member thereof shall be sufficient to bring any such action before the Commission for review. (c) Should the right to exercise such discretionary review be declined, or should no such review be sought within the time stated in the rules promulgated by the Commission, then the action of any such division of the Commission, individual Commissioner, hearing examiner, employee or employee board, shall, for all purposes, including appeal or review thereof, be deemed to be the action of the Commission. SEC. 2. TRANSFER OF FUNCTIONS TO THE CHAIRMAN In addition to the functions transferred by the provisions of Reorganization Plan No. 8 of 1950 (64 Stat. 1264) [set out as a note under this section], there are hereby transferred from the Commission to the Chairman of the Commission the functions of the Commission with respect to the assignment of Commission personnel, including Commissioners, to perform such functions as may have been delegated by the Commission to Commission personnel, including Commissioners, pursuant to section 1 of this reorganization plan. MESSAGE OF THE PRESIDENT To the Congress of the United States: I transmit herewith Reorganization Plan No. 4 of 1961, prepared in accordance with the Reorganization Act of 1949, as amended, and providing for reorganization in the Federal Trade Commission. This Reorganization Plan No. 4 of 1961 follows upon my message of April 13, 1961, to the Congress of the United States. It is believed that the taking effect of the reorganizations included in this plan will provide for greater efficiency in the dispatch of the business of the Federal Trade Commission. The plan provides for greater flexibility in the handling of the business before the Commission, permitting its disposition at different levels so as better to promote its efficient dispatch. Thus matters both of an adjudicatory and regulatory nature may, depending upon their importance and their complexity, be finally consummated by divisions of the Commission, individual Commissioners, hearing examiners, and, subject to the provisions of section 7(a) of the Administrative Procedure Act (60 Stat. 241), by other employees. This will relieve the Commissioners from the necessity of dealing with many matters of lesser importance and thus conserve their time for the consideration of major matters of policy and planning. There is, however, reserved to the Commission as a whole the right to review any such decision, report or certification either upon its own initiative or upon the petition of a party or intervenor demonstrating to the satisfaction of the Commission the desirability of having the matter reviewed at the top level. Provision is also made, in order to maintain the fundamental bipartisan concept explicit in the basic statute creating the Commission, for mandatory review of any such decision, report or certification upon the vote of a majority of the Commission less one member. Inasmuch as the assignment of delegated functions in particular cases and with reference to particular problems to divisions of the Commission, to Commissioners, to hearing examiners, to employees and boards of employees must require continuous and flexible handling, depending both upon the amount and nature of the business, that function is placed in the Chairman by section 2 of the plan. By providing sound organizational arrangements, the taking effect of the reorganizations included in the accompanying reorganization plan will make possible more economical and expeditious administration of the affected functions. It is, however, impracticable to itemize at this time the reductions of expenditures which it is probable will be brought about by such taking effect. After investigation, I have found and hereby declare that each reorganization included in the reorganization plan transmitted herewith is necessary to accomplish one or more of the purposes set forth in section 2(a) of the Reorganization Act of 1949, as amended. I recommend that the Congress allow the reorganization plan to become effective. JOHN F. KENNEDY.


15 U.S.C. § 41 (2018)