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Category Archives: Freedom of Information

FOIA Requests to Office of Government Ethics to date

The Office of Government Ethics has received 406 FOIA requests to date during Fiscal Year 2017.

Collaborative investigative report on rollback of federal regulations

The Deep Industry Ties of Trump’s Deregulation Teams – “In February, President Trump ordered federal agencies to form task forces charged with finding regulations to weaken or eliminate. While the names of appointees to executive-agency task forces are typically made public, some agencies are refusing to reveal who is on their panels. The New York… Continue Reading

Twitter vs FBI on National Security Requests for Information on Users

FindLaw – “Twitter sued the FBI and the Department of Justice to establish the company’s right to say how many national security requests it receives from the government. It is part of the company’s transparency report to tell users how often governments request their information. The government recently lost its motion for summary judgment, while… Continue Reading

The Atlantic examines role of CBO in healthcare debate

The Congressional War on Expertise – The Congressional Budget Office is a controversial part of the health-care debate, but that just proves its importance. “…The CBO is supposed to stay above the political fray, serving as an independent, nonpartisan source of analysis. Both teams must be able to trust the agency’s neutrality, or its work… Continue Reading

POGO – FOIA Turns 51: What Is It and Why Does It Matter?

Via POGO: [On July 4, 2017] “the Act quietly turns 51, compared to last year’s celebration at the signing of the FOIA Improvement Act by then-President Obama. The FOIA Improvement Act included some great updates to the landmark access-to-information law, like improved requirements for agencies to proactively post documents online and a new standard of… Continue Reading

Appropriations Bill May Finally Make Congressional Research Reports Public

POGO: “The Project On Government Oversight has long advocated for free and open public access to the publicly funded Congressional Research Service (CRS) reports, and is happy to say that the day anyone can access a CRS report may soon be here. In the proposed appropriations for the CRS released yesterday, the House Appropriations Committee… Continue Reading

TRAC Sues ICE on Withholding Data on Secure Communities Program

“The Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse (TRAC) has filed yet another suit in federal court today under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) charging Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) with unlawfully withholding records on deportations. The new suit follows one filed on May 9. Both actions concern aspects of ICE’s unusually broad immigration control efforts and… Continue Reading

EFF Sues DOJ For Records on Procedures for Ending National Security Letter Gag Orders

EFF news release:  “The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) sued the Justice Department today to obtain records that can shed light on whether the FBI is complying with a Congressional mandate that it periodically review and lift National Security Letter (NSL) gag orders that are no longer needed. The FBI has issued as many as 500,000… Continue Reading

CIA releases Officially Released Information System database with 50 yrs of FOIA request documents

Via Muckrock’s work and posting as follows: “The results of the Agency’s ambitious project to track all the information its made public will soon become a valuable tool for government transparency. In 1985, citing concerns regarding “difficulty determining what has been publicly disclosed,” the CIA had a truly great idea that would serve both the… Continue Reading

DHS Privacy Office, New FOIA Subscription document library released

Via Jenny Groom – New FOIA documents now available: FEMA Frequently Requested Records – https://www.dhs.gov/publication/fema-records Presidential Transition Records – https://www.dhs.gov/publication/presidential-transition-records Countering Violent Extremism – https://www.dhs.gov/publication/countering-violent-extremism# Congressional Correspondence Logs – https://www.dhs.gov/publication/congressional-correspondence-logs Continue Reading

FOIA Lawsuits Reach Highest Level Recorded in 25 Years

“The latest available case-by-case records from the federal courts show that Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuits challenging the withholding of records have risen since President Trump assumed office. The number of recorded FOIA filings in April climbed to 63 – the highest level recorded for at least 25 years. And although the month is… Continue Reading