Mercury's surface in "enhanced color," a color scheme created to emphasize color differences. This is not what Mercury would look like to the human eye, but by applying mathematical analysis to images, color differences can be accentuated beyond those visible to a person.
Mount Rushmore National Memorial under construction.
The workers had to endure conditions that varied from blazing hot to bitterly cold and windy. Each day they climbed 700 stairs to the top of the mountain to punch-in on the time clock. Then 3/8 inch thick steel cables lowered them over the front of the 500-foot face of the mountain in a "bosun chair." Despite the dangers, no one was killed during the project.
Otters in Glacier Bay National Park and Preserve, Alaska.
The sea otter population of Glacier Bay has increased dramatically in the past 20 years. Ecologists consider sea otters a keystone species here. Otters consume vast quantities of clams, urchins, crabs, and other invertebrates and their presence creates ripples through the ecosystem. NPS photo.
Every day someone like you becomes a wildland wildfire fighter, a teacher, a trail-builder, a museum curator, or a park ranger. Discover your opportunities in national parks. Come to play. Come to learn. Come to serve. Develop your environmental leadership skills. Find a job. Be the next generation to preserve and protect these great places.
With more than 80% of Americans living in urban areas, urban parks are more important than ever. The father of American landscape architecture, Frederick Law Olmsted, said of urban parks:
It is one great purpose of the Park to supply to the hundreds of thousands of tired workers, who have no opportunity to spend their summers in the country, a specimen of God's handiwork that shall be to them, inexpensively, what a month or two in the White Mountains or the Adirondacks is, at great cost, to those in easier circumstances.
Sometimes your government work may benefit you or your family personally, or may affect individuals or organizations that you have some connection with outside your government job. In these circumstances, the public could be concerned that you will be motivated by considerations other than your desire to do what is best for the public as a whole. Because the success of our government system depends upon maintaining the confidence of the public, your agency might decide that you should not be involved in a certain assignment because the public might question your objectivity.
Of course, the public is likely to consider some circumstances more troublesome than others. Recognizing this, Congress passed a criminal conflict of interest law, 18 USC § 208, which prohibits you from working on an assignment in some situations - even if you know you can be objective and even if your supervisor wants you to work on it.
Specifically, this law says that you may not work on an assignment that you know will affect your own financial interests or the financial interests of your spouse or your minor child. The prohibition also applies if you know the assignment will affect the financial interests of your general partner, or of an organization that you serve as an officer, director, employee, general partner, or trustee and affect the financial interests of someone with whom you have an arrangement for employment, or with whom you are negotiating for employment.
When you are unable to work on an assignment because of this conflict of interest, an agency can often reassign the matter to another employee. However, if that is not possible or if your inability to work on that particular assignment means you will not be doing the job the government hired you to do, then your agency can require you to remove yourself from the situation which is causing the conflict. (Such as -- selling stock, resigning from a board, or terminating employment discussion with a prospective employer.)
All DOI employees and Special Government Employees may be required to recuse from a matter in order to avoid a conflict of interest. Use this Recusal Best Practices guide to understand when and how to recuse.
If you have recused from a matter to avoid a conflict of interest, you must implement a screening arrangement to include a gatekeeper. Use these Guidelines for Gatekeepers to inform your gatekeeper how to help you comply with your recusal.
There may be circumstances other than those covered by 18 USC § 208 in which employees should not perform official duties in order to avoid an appearance of loss of impartiality. The issue of impartiality is addressed in the Standards of Ethical Conduct for employees of the executive branch at 5 CFR 2635.502. The regulation contains two disqualification provisions addressing appearance issues.
The first provision, entitled "Personal and business relationships," states that employees should obtain specific authorization before participating in certain government matters where their impartiality is likely to be questioned. The matters covered by this standard include those:
Involving specific parties, such as contracts, grants, or investigations, that are likely to affect the financial interests of members of the employees' households, or
In which persons with whom employees have specific relationships are parties or represent parties. This would include, for example, matters involving recent employers, employers of spouses or minor children, or anyone with whom the employees have or seek a business or financial relationship.
The second disqualification provision, entitled "Extraordinary payments from former employers," restricts employees' participation in certain matters involving former employers. If a former employer gave an employee an "extraordinary payment" in excess of $10,000 prior to entering Federal service, this provision bars the employee from participating for two years in matters in which that former employer is a party or represents a party. For example, a $25,000 payment voted on an ad hoc basis by a Board of Directors would be an "extraordinary payment". A routine severance payment made under an established benefit plan would not.
Service on the Board of Directors or as an Officer of an Outside Organization
All DOI employees who wish to serve on the Board of Directors or as an officer of an outside organization, in any capacity, should consult with their servicing ethics office for support.
Prior ethics approval is required for such service in an employee's:
official capacity (as part of the employee's official duties)
personal capacity (as an outside activity) if the organization is a prohibited source (your servicing ethics office will help you determine whether the organization is a prohibited source).
For additional information and support, contact your servicing ethics office.