Independent Agencies

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  • Bodies created by Congress to serve a specified public purpose and to operate with more independence from the executive branch, as do executive agencies. Executive agencies are the other type of federal agencies and are administered within one of the following 14 executive departments: Agriculture, Commerce, Defense, Education, Energy, Health & Human Services, Housing & Urban Development, Interior, Justice, Labor, State, Transportation, Treasury, and Veteran's Affairs. The first independent agency created in the United States was the Interstate Commerce Commission (ICC), created in 1886. There was a surge of independent agency creation during the New Deal era.

    Independent agencies' independence is strengthened through the commissioner's staggered and fixed appointment terms, which usually overlap the President's, and the bipartisan requirement of a set maximum number of commissioners ...

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