The Department of Energy's overarching mission is to advance the national, economic, and energy security of the United States; to promote scientific and technological innovation in support of that mission; and to ensure the environmental cleanup of the national nuclear weapons complex. The Department's strategic goals to achieve the mission are designed to deliver results along five strategic themes:
Within these themes there are sixteen strategic goals which are designed to help DOE successfully achieve its mission and vision.
The Office of Hearings and Appeals (OHA) is the quasi-judicial arm of the Department of Energy that conducts hearings and issues initial Departmental decisions with respect to a wide range of legal issues and programs delegated to the Office by the Secretary of Energy.
The Office is primarily responsible for conducting hearings and issuing decisions involving personnel security clearance cases, and contractor employee whistleblower cases. The Office has jurisdiction for deciding Freedom of Information and Privacy Act appeals, as well as other appeals involving administrative determinations reached by Department officials under the jurisdiction of the Secretary.
OHA also provides an adjudicatory forum in matters involving contested issues of fact or law. In addition, OHA is responsible for deciding Applications for Exception from generally applicable requirements of a rule, regulation or order of the Department of Energy, and for hearing Petitions for Special Redress seeking "extraordinary relief" -- apart from or in addition to -- any other remedy provided in the Department’s enabling statutes.