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By Stacie Bearup

Overview of the U.S. Department of the Treasury

The Department of the Treasury (DoT) is an executive department of the United States Government. The Department of the Treasury oversees the country's finances, promotes economic growth and ensures financial security. The DoT was established on June 22, 1775. The first treasurer for the DoT was Michael Hillegas, who served from July 29, 1775, until September 11, 1789. The first Secretary of the Treasury, Alexander Hamilton, was sworn in on September 11, 1789, by President George Washington and served as Secretary until his death in 1795. During Alexander Hamilton's time in office, much of the government's structure was established.

Responsibilities of Department of the Treasury

-Advising the president on economic and financial issues

-Operating and maintaining production of U.S. currency

-Disbursement of payment to the American public

-Collecting taxes due to the U.S. and paying all U.S. bills

-Borrowing of necessary funds needed to run the federal government

-Working with other government agencies, foreign governments and international financial institutions to encourage global economic growth

-Implementing sanctions to protect U.S. finances and economy

-Managing government accounts and public debt

-Enforcing federal finance and tax laws

-Investigating and prosecuting when tax laws are broken

The Department of the Treasury is overseen by several officials and is comprised of several offices and bureaus that each serve an individual purpose.

Senior officials

Secretary of the Treasury: serves as head of the department, member of the president's Cabinet and member of the U.S. National Security Council

Deputy Secretary of the Treasury: assists the secretary in the supervision of the department, direct successor under the secretary, only official other than the secretary who can sign treasury orders

Treasurer of the United States: oversees the Bureau of Engraving and Printing and the United States Mint, serves as representative for the department on behalf of the secretary in community development and public engagement

Chief of Staff: coordinator of the staff of the treasury department, primary aide to the secretary


Domestic Finance: develops policies for financial institutions, federal debt finance, financial regulations and capital markets

Economic Policy: responsible for analyzing economic issues and developing appropriate policies

General Council: advises secretary and other officials on policy and legal issues

International Affairs: prevents financial instability by working on global challenges facing the U.S.

Legislative Affairs: works on legislation with the secretary and Congress by assisting with formulating policies

Management: manages policy within the following departments: budgeting, planning, human resources, information and technology management, financial management, accounting, records and administrative services

Office of Financial Research (OFR): works to improve the quality and accessibility of financial information through research

Office of Financial Stability (OFS): implements the Troubled Assets Relief Program (TARP) in order to strengthen the U.S. economy

Public Affairs: advises officials within the department how to best communicate issues with the public

Tax Policy: in charge of development and implementation of tax policies and programs

Terrorism and Financial Intelligence (TFI): develops and implements policies regarding domestic and international crimes linked to terrorism


The Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (TTB): responsible for enforcing laws covering the production, use and distribution of alcohol products

The Bureau of Engraving and Printing: designs and manufactures U.S. currencies

The Bureau of the Fiscal Service: ensures financial security of the U.S. government through accounting, financing, collections and payments

The Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI) fund: works with struggling urban and rural communities to make financial services more available

The Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN): supports legislation for domestic and international financial crimes

The Inspector General: responsible for audits, investments and reviews for the Treasury

Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA): works on policies to prevent tax fraud and abuse

The Internal Revenue Service: collects and assesses U.S. internal revenue

The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency: charges, regulates and and supervises national banks

The U.S. Mint: manufactures domestic and foreign coins and distributes U.S. coins to Federal Reserve banks while maintaining U.S. silver and gold assets.

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