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Rule Approval by the Regulatory Policy Officer (RPO)

The General Counsel, Department of Defense, as the DoD RPO, is responsible for monitoring regulatory activities within DoD to ensure uniform compliance with the implementation of executive and legislative requirements and priorities, to include the specific requirements of EO 12866. All rulemakings will be approved by the RPO prior to review by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB).

The Director of Administration and Management (DA&M) is the functional proponent for the Regulatory Program and shall manage the operational requirements of the rule approval process. The Washington Headquarter Services, Executive Services Directorate, Information Management Division (WHS/ESD/IMD) administers the program on behalf of the DA&M. IMD processes, reviews, and forwards the rule submission package through the DA&M to the RPO and monitors all DoD rulemaking under consideration at OMB.

In addition to the text of the rule in Federal Register format, the following documents must be included in each regulatory package:
Sample of Certification Memorandum

Please note that certification memorandums should be signed by a PSA and coordinated through the DoD Components functional General Counsel and with Legislative Affairs if the rulemaking is a interim final or final rule. 
Sample Rule Data Sheet
Sample Unified Agenda Sheet
Sample Hill Notification

When your office is ready to go forward with a rulemaking and you have assembled the paperwork, your package should be sent to the WHS/ESD/IMD, ATTN:  OSD Federal Register Liaison Officer, 4800 Mark Center Drive, East Tower, Suite 02G09, Alexandria, VA 22350-3100.  Concurrently, you should notify IMD by e-mail that we should expect a submission.  In the e-mail, please attach electronic files of the rule and the required paperwork in MSWord format.  A PDF format of the signed certification memo is appropriate. IMD has developed a database to capture much of the information in these files.  We will review for completeness and then prepare the DA&M transmittal memo to the General Counsel, Department of Defense and the Action Memo that the General Counsel will sign approving the rule.


Once RPO approval has been obtained, IMD will transmit a copy of the signed (approving) action memo to your Federal Register Liaison Officer who should then forward it to you.  At that time, a Hill Notification—prepared in coordination with your Office of the General Counsel and submitted to IMD—will be forwarded to OASD(LA) for action. When the Notification has been sent to Congress, the Federal Register Liaison Officer should proceed with the rulemaking process by sending a copy of the rule text to the appropriate OMB Desk Officer and requesting informal review and permission to publish (see section titled OMB Approval).