EDITORIAL RECLASSIFICATION
TITLE 50, UNITED STATES CODE



BRIEF SUMMARY OF CHANGES

In 2013, chapter 15 of title 50, United States Code, was reorganized into four new chapters in order to set forth more clearly the provisions of the National Security Act of 1947, the Central Intelligence Agency Act of 1949, the National Security Agency Act of 1959, and certain other related statutes. No statutory text was altered by this action. The provisions were merely transferred from one place to another in title 50, United States Code.

A decision to transfer provisions in the United States Code is not undertaken lightly. After careful study, the Office of the Law Revision Counsel concluded that certain organizational deficiencies in title 50, United States Code, must be corrected. The short-term inconvenience of adjusting to new Code citations was greatly outweighed by the benefit of making much needed long-term improvements in the organizational structure of national security law in the United States Code.

For the online version of the United States Code, the reorganization occurred on May 20, 2013, after which the new Code citations were effective. For the printed version of the United States Code, the reorganization occurred effective with supplement I of the 2012 edition.


BACKGROUND AND NEED FOR CHANGE

The Office of the Law Revision Counsel is responsible for maintaining and publishing the United States Code, which is a codification of the general and permanent laws of the United States organized into titles based on subject matter. An integral part of producing the United States Code is determining where new laws should be placed, a process known as classification.

Classification is a challenging task because new law must be classified not only to fit logically within existing Code categories, but also so as to allow room for future development. Over time, some areas of law outgrow their original boundaries due to the enactment of new laws and amendments. As a result, the Code becomes less organized, harder to navigate, and less reflective of the underlying structure of the statutes.

One such problem area was national security law, which was classified primarily to chapter 15 of title 50, United States Code (50 U.S.C. 401 et seq.). Chapter 15 was originally created from the National Security Act of 1947. Over the years, however, chapter 15 evolved to incorporate additional statutes related to national security. As a result of the extensive growth in this area of law, chapter 15 became overly cluttered, and its structure became opaque. To reduce the overcrowding and to reflect more clearly the underlying structure of the individual statutes, the material in chapter 15 was reorganized into four new chapters.


     * Chapter 44, National Security (50 U.S.C. 3001 et seq.) consists primarily of the National Security Act of 1947.
     * Chapter 45, Miscellaneous Intelligence Community Authorities (50 U.S.C. 3301 et seq.) consists of related provisions from 16 different statutes.
     * Chapter 46, Central Intelligence Agency (50 U.S.C. 3501 et seq.) consists primarily of the Central Intelligence Agency Act of 1949.
     * Chapter 47, National Security Agency (50 U.S.C. 3601 et seq.) consists of the National Security Agency Act of 1959.


MAJOR ACTIONS AND STATUS

  • March 23, 2015.—The Office of the Law Revision Counsel completed, and submitted to the House Committee on the Judiciary for introduction in the 114th Congress, a draft bill to make technical amendments to update statutory references to provisions classified to chapters 44, 45, 46, and 47 of title 50, United States Code.
  • June 18, 2015.—H.R. 2831 (114th Congress) was introduced and referred to the House Committee on the Judiciary.
  • June 30, 2015.—The Office of the Law Revision Counsel submitted an updated draft of the bill to the House Committee on the Judiciary.
  • December 2, 2015.—H.R. 2831 (114th Congress), as amended, ordered to be reported.
  • February 1, 2016.—The Office of the Law Revision Counsel submitted an updated draft of the bill to the House Committee on the Judiciary.
  • September 6, 2016.—H.R. 2831 (114th Congress), as amended, passed in the House of Representatives.
  • September 7, 2016.—H.R. 2831 (114th Congress) received in the Senate and referred to the Senate Committee on the Judiciary.
  • January 6, 2017.—The Office of the Law Revision Counsel submitted an updated draft bill (and accompanying explanation) to the House Committee on the Judiciary for introduction in the 115th Congress.
  • March 15, 2018.—H.R. 5295 (115th Congress) was introduced and referred to the House Committee on the Judiciary.
  • April 23, 2018.—The Office of the Law Revision Counsel submitted to the House Committee on the Judiciary for introduction in the 115th Congress a draft bill (and accompanying explanation) to make technical amendments to update statutory references to certain provisions classified to title 2, United States Code, title 50, United States Code, and title 52, United States Code.

RESOURCES FOR TRANSITION

(1) Bill.

(2) Explanation.

(3) Comprehensive Chart - old/new Code citations for all transferred provisions

(4) Quick Chart for Nat'l Security Act of 1947 - old/new Code citations

(5) Quick Chart for CIA Act of 1949 - old/new Code citations

(6) Quick Chart for NSA Act of 1959 - old/new Code citations


QUESTIONS AND COMMENTS

Questions and comments about the bill to make technical amendments to update statutory references to provisions classified to title 2, United States Code, title 50, United States Code, and title 52, United States Code, should be directed to:


     Robert M. Sukol, Deputy Law Revision Counsel

     U.S. House of Representatives

     Washington, D.C. 20515

     Email: robert.sukol@mail.house.gov

     Telephone: (202) 226-2411