Mineral Management Service

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The Mineral Management Service (MMS) of the U.S. Department of the Interior was established in 1982 to consolidate certain functions from the U.S. Geological Survey, the Bureau of Land Management, and the Secretary of Interior. The reorganization was the result of the underreporting of oil and gas production from Federal and Indian lands. A U.S. House of Representatives report stated "This consolidation places the responsibility and accountability for the off-shore mineral leasing program in one spot, thus making oversight easier. The Committee will be looking carefully at the progress this organization makes to make sure that the people of the United States get the maximum protection of their resources, including a proper return on their ownership."[1]

Organizationally, MMS has been located under the Assistant Secretary for Land and Minerals Management. The leaders of the Bureau of Land Management and the Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement also report to this assistant secretary. Whereas these two leaders are appointed by the President, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate, MMS is led by a director who is appointed by the Secretary. The MMS directorship has been a non-career (political) Senior Executive Service (SES) position.


  1. U.S. Congress, House Committee on Appropriations, Department of the Interior and Related Agencies Appropriation Bill, 1983, report to accompany H.R. 7356, 97th Cong., 2nd sess. (Washington: GPO, 1982), p. 40.