Located 2,600 miles southwest of Hawaii, the National Park of American Samoa is the most remote unit of the National Park System and the U.S. National Park south of the Equator. The Park spreads across three islands, 9,500 acres of tropical rainforest, and 4,000 acres of ocean, including coral reefs. While remote, the islands of American Samoa, true to the meaning of the word Samoa (Islands of Sacred Earth), are welcoming and offer beautiful landscapes and centuries of culture and history.
Seasoned backpacker and adventurer Yang Lu earned the grand prize in the 2015 Share the Experience photo contest with this image of a sunburst captured at sunrise in Glen Canyon National Recreation Area, Utah. Yang has made the outdoors part of his daily life and finds deep connection to the land through his lens.
“My photography is not just for recreation, it is to inspire people to explore these areas." -- Yang Lu
Photo by Yang Lu (www.sharetheexperience.org).
The plantings of cherry trees originated in 1912 as a gift of friendship to the People of the United States from the People of Japan. In Japan, the flowering cherry tree, or "Sakura," is an exalted flowering plant. The beauty of the cherry blossom is a potent symbol equated with the evanescence of human life and epitomizes the transformation of Japanese culture throughout the ages.
This subpart sets forth requirements for agency disabled veteran affirmative action programs (DVAAPs) designed to promote Federal employment and advancement opportunities for qualified disabled veterans. The regulations in this subpart are prescribed pursuant to responsibilities assigned to the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) under section 403 of the Vietnam Era Veterans Readjustment Assistance Act of 1974, as amended (38 U.S.C. 2014), and section 307 of the Civil Service Reform Act of 1978 (5 U.S.C. 3112).
Sec. 720.302 Definition.
As used in this subpart, the terms veteran and disabled veteran have the meanings given to these terms in title 38 of the United States Code.
Sec. 720.303 Agency programs.
Continuing Programs. Each Department, agency, and instrumentality in the executive branch, including the U.S. Postal Service and the Postal Rate Commission, shall conduct a continuing affirmative program for the recruitment, hiring, placement, and advancement of disabled veterans.
Program Responsibility. The head of each agency shall assign overall program responsibility to an appropriate agency official. The official so designated shall be at a high enough level to ensureeffective program administration and the devotion of adequate resources to the program.
Annually, OPM will provide appropriate data on the employment of disabled veterans to each agency participating in the Central Personnel Data File (CPDF). These data will be taken from CPDF. For DVAAP purposes, CPDF data are considered to be the official record of the status of disabled veteran employment within each participating agency. Each participating agency is responsible for assuring that such records are timely, accurate, and complete.
CPDF data must be analyzed by participating agencies to identify problem areas and deficiencies in the employment and advancement of disabled veterans. (OPM will establish with each agency not participating in CPDF, the nature and extent of data to be used in identifying problems and deficiencies.) Based on this analysis, agencies shall develop methods to improve the recruitment, hiring, placement, and advancement of disabled veterans, or revise or redirect existing methods, as necessary. These methods must then be translated into action items.
Sec. 720.304 Agency plan.
Plan Development. As part of the affirmative action plan it prepares pursuant to section 501(b) of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 (29 U.S.C. 791 (b)) ('Section 501(b) Plan''), each Department, agency, or instrumentality in the executive branch must have an up-to-date affirmative action plan for the employment and advancement of disabled veterans.
Each agency must review its plan on an annual basis, together with its accomplishments for the previous fiscal year, updated employment data, and any changes in agency mission or structure, and update the plan as necessary. Agency operating components and field installations required to develop separate plans under paragraph (b) of this section, below, must perform the same type of annual review and update of their plans.
Plans shall cover a time period of not less than one year and may cover a longer period if concurrent with the agency's Section 501(b) Plan. Each plan must specify the period of time it cover
Initial plans for fiscal year 1983 required under this subpart must be developed by January 30, 1983 and must be in effect on that day.
Each agency must have an agencywide plan covering all of its operating components and field installations. Agencywide plans shall include instructions assigning specific responsibilities on
affirmative actions to be taken by the agency's various operating components and field installations to promote the employment and advancement of disabled veterans. OPM must be informed when headquarters offices require plans at the field or installation level.
Agency operating components and field installations must have a copy of the plan covering them, and must implement their responsibilities under it. OPM may require operating components and field installations to develop separate plans in accordance with program guidance and/or instructions.
Plan Submission. Affirmative action plans developed under this section shall be submitted to OPM upon request. The Office of Personnel Management will review a selection of agency plans each fiscal year.
Plan Certification. Each agency must certify to OPM by December 1 of each year that it has an up-to-date plan as required by this section. This certification must indicate the date the agency's most recent plan was effective or was last amended.
Plan Content. Disabled veteran affirmative action plans shall, at a minimum, contain:
A statement of the agency's policy with regard to the employment and advancement of disabled veterans, especially those who are 30 percent or more disabled.
The name and title of the official assigned overall responsibility for development and implementation of the action plan.
An assessment of the current status of disabled veteran employment within the agency, with emphasis on those veterans who are 30 percent or more disabled.
A description of recruiting methods which will be used to seek out disabled veteran applicants, including special steps to be taken to recruit veterans who are 30 percent or more disabled.
A description of how the agency will provide or improve internal advancement opportunities for disabled veterans
A description of how the agency will inform its operating components and field installations, on a regular basis, of their responsibilities for employing and advancing disabled veterans
A description of how the agency will monitor, review, and evaluate its planned efforts, including implementation at operating component and field installation levels during the period covered by the plan.
Sec. 720.305 Agency accomplishment reports.
Not later than December 1 of each year, agencies must submit an annual accomplishment report on their disabled veterans affirmative action program to the Office of Personnel Management, covering the previous fiscal year.
Agency annual accomplishment reports must describe:
Methods used to recruit and employ disabled veterans, especially those who are 30 percent or more disabled.
Methods used to provide or improve internal advancement opportunities for disabled veterans.
A description of how the activities of major operating components and field installations were monitored, reviewed, and evaluated.
An explanation of the agency's progress in implementing its affirmative action plan during the fiscal year. Where progress has not been shown, the report will cite reasons for the lack of progress, along with specific plans for overcoming cited obstacles to progress.
Sec. 720.306 Responsibilities of The Office of Personnel Management
Program Review. OPM will monitor agency program implementation through review of agency plans, direct agency contact, review of employment data, and through other appropriate means. As it deems appropriate, OPM will conduct onsite evaluations of program effectiveness, both at agency headquarters and at field installations or operating components.
Technical Assistance. The Office of Personnel Management will provide technical assistance, guidance, instructions, data, and other information as appropriate to supplement and support agency programs for disabled veterans, through the Federal Personnel Manual (FPM).
Semiannual Reports. As provided by 38 U.S.C. 2014(d), OPM will, on at least a semiannual basis, publish reports on Government-wide progress in implementing affirmative action programs for disabled veterans.
Report to Congress. As required by 38 U.S.C. 2014(e), OPM will report to Congress each year on the implementation and progress of the program. These reports will include specific assessments of agency progress or lack of progress in meeting the objectives of the program.
Sec. 720.307 Interagency report clearance.
The reports contained in this regulation have been cleared in accordance with FPMR 101-11.11 and assigned interagency report control number 0305-OPM-AN.