87. Summary of Conclusions of a Special Coordination Committee Meeting1


  • Legislative Charters


  • State

    • Warren Christopher, Dep Sec
    • Herbert Hansell (Legal Adviser)
  • Defense

    • Deanne Siemer (General Counsel)
  • JCS

    • Lt. Gen. William Smith
  • Justice

    • Attorney General Griffin Bell
    • Ken Bass (Office of Legal Counsel)
  • IOB

    • Thomas Farmer (Chairman/IOB)
    • Burt Wides (Counsel/IOB)
  • White House

    • David Aaron (Acting Chairman)
    • Robert Lipshutz
  • NSC

    • Samuel Hoskinson
    • Brig. Gen. Robert Rosenberg
  • CIA

    • Admiral Stansfield Turner
    • Frank Carlucci, DDCI
    • Anthony Lapham (General Counsel)
  • OMB

    • Bowman Cutter
    • Arnold Donahue (Branch Chief for Intelligence)


The SCC met to consider Title I of S. 2525.2 The special Legislative Charters Working Group had completed an exhaustive review of Title I and prepared a detailed report to the SCC including definition of issues for review and decision.3

The provisions of Title I involving restrictions on intelligence activities were set aside for later SCC consideration (mid-August) in conjunction with a new Title II that will cover all restrictions topics.

The following conclusions were reached on the issues identified as requiring SCC decision:

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1. Should the DNI be changed from a Level II to Level I? Different views require Presidential decision.

2. Should the Assistant Directors be confirmed by the Senate? Different views require Presidential decision.

3. Should the DNI be given any authority with respect to formulation of intelligence requirements? Principles established in E.O. 12036 should be reflected in Title I language.

4. Should the provision granting DNI authority to insure “usefulness” of intelligence information be retained without modification? Agreement against.

5. Should the bill contain a definition of intelligence-related activities and give the DNI a right to review such activities? Agreement that all references to intelligence-related activities should be deleted.

6. What should be the provisions concerning the DNI’s budget-making authority? Agreement that DNI should have same powers as E.O. 12036 gives to the DCI. The additional “fencing” provision requires Presidential decision.

7. Should the DNI retain the authority to levy analytic tasks that is granted in E.O. 12036? Agreement that the E.O. 12036 language should be included in Title I.

8. Should the DNI have authority to terminate security clearances of contractors of Intelligence Community entities other than the O/DNI and the CIA? Different views require Presidential decision.

9. Should objection be raised to references in the bill to needs of the Congress for intelligence information and analysis? Agreement that such objection should be raised.

10. Should the IOB become a statutory entity and, if so, how detailed should its charter be and what kinds of questions should it address? Differing views require Presidential decision.

The Working Group’s opinions on the “information issues” were endorsed in principle with the following exceptions.

1. Entities Comprising the “Intelligence Community.” The question of specific definition and designation versus broader and more flexible language will be put to the President.

2. DNI as head of CIA. The provisions which allow the President to assign the DNI’s function as head of CIA to the DDNI or an ADNI should be retained.

3. Congressional oversight and accountability. The President should be provided with a short form and the Title I long form language options.

4. Provisions concerning Comptroller General Audits and Reviews. Current practices should be retained.

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No action is to be taken with the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence relating to the SCC’s deliberations, until after the President has reviewed the results and indicated his decisions.4

  1. Source: Carter Library, National Security Affairs, Brzezinski Material, Brzezinski Office File, Box 96, Subject Chron, Intelligence (Charter Legislation), 6–12/78. Secret. The meeting was held in the White House Situation Room. Aaron initialed next to his name in the list of participants.
  2. Title I of S. 2525 (see footnote 1, Document 84), National Intelligence, established an Office of the Director of National Intelligence under the direction of the National Security Council.
  3. Not found.
  4. On July 6 Hoskinson wrote to Brzezinski advocating for a meeting about S. 2525 among Brzezinski, Turner, and Brown, with the hope of reducing the number of issues requiring Presidential decision. (Carter Library, National Security Council, Institutional Files, 1977–1981, Box 13, PD 17/3 (1 of 2)) On July 19 Brzezinski presented five issues to Carter on Title I that required his decision. These five issues were: DNI as head of the CIA, DNI level, ADNI level, confirmation of ADNIs by the Senate, and congressional reporting requirements. (Carter Library, National Security Council, Institutional Files, 1977–1981, Box 12, PD 17 [6])