Most publications of U.S. Government agencies follow the classification rules as presented in the main guidance sections. The publications of the Executive Office of the President, the Vice President, and Presidential commissions and committees established by executive order that report to the President have specific rules outlined here.
The agency symbol assigned to the President of the United States is PR, followed by the number corresponding to the ordinal number of succession to the Presidency:
Subdivisions after the agency symbol are established following normal practice. Special treatment prevents unnecessary establishment of new classes and keeps together the publications of organizations appointed by one President.
Presidential Committees and Commissions
Over the years, U.S. Presidents have appointed a number of special committees and commissions to study particular problems. Their findings are then reported directly to the Chief Executive. These organizations usually cease to exist after making their report. Publications are typically few in number, and normal bureau treatment is not practical.
Presidentially-appointed committees and commissions are assigned to one class: PR --.8:. The dashes in this example correspond to the number of the Presidential administration. A Cutter number is assigned to each commission or committee based on the principal subject word of its name.
A slash and a Cutter number based on the principal subject word of the publication’s title follow the Cutter designation for the committee or commission. The PR--.8: class is unusual in using two Cutter numbers in sequence after the colon. The same treatment is used for commissions established by Congress (see Congressional and Legislative Branch Publications).
In this example, the ‘44’ identifies this as the Obama administration (44th President) and uses the Cutter ‘AR 5’ for ‘Army’ and ‘R 29’ for ‘Report.’
When a class has been established for a committee, the class continues under the establishing President, even though a new President may be elected. If the new President renews the establishment of the committee, then the class is transferred to the .8 class for the subsequent President.
Presidential Commissions vs Presidential Initiatives
While Presidential committees and commissions are classed under PR, Presidential initiatives are typically classed as part of the agency in which the initiative is housed. This can be determined by checking the Executive Order establishing the initiative. For jointly-housed or co-chaired initiatives, class the initiative under the primary agency based on funding or predominance of staffing.
Permanent Agencies Reporting to the President
Beginning with President John F. Kennedy’s administration, the continuing offices assigned to the President, which make up the Executive Office of the President, have been given permanent classes under the symbol PREX.
A change in administration does not change the classes for such offices as the Office of Management and Budget, Council of Economic Advisers, Council on Environmental Quality, etc. These agencies have been given individual classification numbers as subordinate offices of the Executive Office of the President:
Additionally, if a commission or committee has been established for an indefinite period, then its serial publications are assigned unique classes in PREX 1 rather than in the PR stem to avoid establishing a new class with every new President.
Vice President of the United States
Publications from the Vice President of the United States are classed using PRVP, followed by the corresponding number of the Presidential administration: