About the Federal Vacancies Reform Act of 1998

The Federal Vacancies Reform Act of 1998 (Vacancies Reform Act) was enacted on October 21, 1998. (Pub. L. No. 105-277, Div. C, tit. 1, § 151, 112 Stat. 2681-611-16, codified at 5 U.S.C. §§ 3345-3349d.) The Act replaces the prior Vacancies Act, and provides new rules for the temporary filling of vacant executive agency positions that require Presidential appointment with Senate confirmation. Under the Act, an acting officer may serve in a vacant position for no longer than 210 days, with adjustments to be made if the President submits a nomination to fill the position and under other specified circumstances. The Act requires executive departments and agencies to report to the Congress and to the Comptroller General certain items of information about a vacancy immediately upon the occurrence of events specified in the Act. The Act also provides that the Comptroller General is to report to specified congressional committees, the President, and the Office of Personnel Management if, based on the information submitted by an agency, the Comptroller General determines that an acting officer is serving longer than the 210-day period (including applicable exceptions) established by the Act.

GAO has been receiving and recording the information required to be reported to the Comptroller General under the Act. GAO is now making this information available to the public through this web site.