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§ 573. Neutrals
- (a) A neutral may be a permanent or temporary officer or employee of the
Federal Government or any other individual who is acceptable to the parties to
a dispute resolution proceeding. A neutral shall have no official, financial,
or personal conflict of interest with respect to the issues in controversy,
unless such interest is fully disclosed in writing to all parties and all
parties agree that the neutral may serve.
- (b) A neutral who serves as a conciliator, facilitator, or mediator
serves at the will of the parties.
- (c) In consultation with the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service,
other appropriate Federal agencies, and professional organizations experienced
in matters concerning dispute resolution, the Administrative Conference of the
United States shall -
- (1) establish standards for neutrals (including experience, training,
affiliations, diligence, actual or potential conflicts of interest, and other
qualifications) to which agencies may refer;
- (2) maintain a roster of individuals who meet such standards and are
otherwise qualified to act as neutrals, which shall be made available upon
- (3) enter into contracts for the services of neutrals that may be used
by agencies on an elective basis in dispute resolution proceedings; and
- (4) develop procedures that permit agencies to obtain the services of
neutrals on an expedited basis.
- (d) An agency may use the services of one or more employees of other
agencies to serve as neutrals in dispute resolution proceedings. The agencies
may enter into an interagency agreement that provides for the reimbursement by
the user agency or the parties of the full or partial cost of the services of
such an employee.
- (e) Any agency may enter into a contract with any person on a roster
established under subsection (c)(2) or a roster maintained by other public or
private organizations, or individual for services as a neutral, or for training
in connection with alternative means of dispute resolution. The parties in a
dispute resolution proceeding shall agree on compensation for the neutral that
is fair and reasonable to the Government.