CEQ NOPC Communications Request

Jesse Coleman filed this request with the Council on Environmental Quality of the United States of America.
Tracking #

FY2019-026

Status
Completed

Communications

From: Jesse Coleman


To Whom It May Concern:

Pursuant to the Freedom of Information Act, I hereby request the following records:

All communications, including emails with attachments, between CEQ staff Chris Prandoni, or Alexander Domesle, or Mario Loyola, and the National Ocean Policy Coalition or HBW Resources. Please search for all communications between CEQ and Jack Belcher, David Holt, Brent Greenfield, Mike Whatley, or Micheal Zehr. Please search your records for all email addresses ending in "@hbwresources.com" or "@oceanpolicy.com"
I am making this request on behalf of Documented, a media requestor, and we agree to pay all applicable fees.

Please limit this search to January 20, 2017, to the date this request is processed.

The requested documents will be made available to the general public, and this request is not being made for commercial purposes.

In the event that there are fees, I would be grateful if you would inform me of the total charges in advance of fulfilling my request. I would prefer the request filled electronically, by e-mail attachment if available or CD-ROM if not.

Thank you in advance for your anticipated cooperation in this matter. I look forward to receiving your response to this request within 20 business days, as the statute requires.

Sincerely,

Jesse Coleman

From: Council on Environmental Quality

Dear Mr. Coleman,

This is to acknowledge receipt of the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request[s] that you sent to the Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ). The assigned case number[s] and a summary of your request[s] is below:

1) FY2019-026 - communications between CEQ and NOPC and HBW as described in your email below

At this time, your FOIA request is unperfected. I am not sure what you are asking for based on your description of the Federal Records you are seeking. In the first sentence you have identified three CEQ staff members and in subsequent sentences you are asking for CEQ records without enumerating these individuals. It is unclear whether the three sentences describing the records you seek are describing three separate groups of records or describing the same group of records. Or perhaps the second and third sentences were merely tips on how to search for records described in the first sentence, I cannot tell. Please clarify your request. If it is easier to do so over the phone, please don't hesitate to call me.

I am interpreting your FOIA request to include a request to be considered a special requester status as a media requester for fee determinations. In order to verify your identity and evaluate this request, please provide a signed copy of this request on your organizational letterhead. For your convenience, you may simply email this to me in a PDF file. If you are not requesting special requester statues, please let me know.

This FOIA request is considered a complex request that involves interagency coordination to conduct the search for records sought. I am the FOIA Public Liaison and you may contact me with questions regarding your cases. You may also contact the Office of Government Information Services (OGIS) for assistance with FOIA. OGIS may be reached at:

Office of Government Information Services

National Archives and Records Administration

Room 2510

8601 Adelphi Road

College Park, MD 20740-6001

Email: ogis@nara.gov

Phone: 301-837-1996

Fax: 301-837-0348

Toll-free: 1-877-684-6448

Very Respectfully,

Howard Sun

Attorney Advisor

Council on Environmental Quality

Executive Office of the President

Office: (202) 456-3621

From: Jesse Coleman

Dear Mr. Sun,

Sorry for the confusion!

To clarify, I am looking for all communications, including emails with attachments, between CEQ staff Chris Prandoni, or Alexander Domesle, or Mario Loyola, and the National Ocean Policy Coalition or HBW Resources.

As you theorized, I am only seeking one set of documents, the following sentences are tips for searching for these records:
In order to aid in this search, please search for all communications between the above mentioned CEQ staff and Jack Belcher, David Holt, Brent Greenfield, Mike Whatley, or Micheal Zehr. Please search the records of the indicated CEQ staff for all email addresses ending in "@hbwresources.com" or "@oceanpolicy.com"

I am making this request on behalf of Documented, a media requestor.

Documented seeks the above listed records for noncommercial use as a representative of the news media. Documented qualifies as a news media organization under the definition provided by Congress in the OPEN Government Act because it “gathers information of potential interest to a large segment of the public, and uses its editorial skills to turn the raw materials into a distinct work, and distributes that work to an audience.”
Specifically, Documented is seeking this FOIA request because the information in it is of interest to a large portion of the pubic, including the many concerned citizens that regularly acquire information through our extensive range of publications. These publications include websites, blogs, newsletters, reports, press statements, social media networks such as Facebook, and Twitter. In addition, Documented reaches out to many traditional news media outlets that regularly broadcast our publications through television, radio, print and electronic articles and interviews.
Documented plans to compile the information from this request into a distinct, original work that will be released to the public through the publications listed above, and our website, https://documented.net/2018/09/05/department-interior-ignores-scientists-appease-oil-industry-endangered-beetle/.

From: Council on Environmental Quality

Good morning Mr. Coleman,

Your request FOIA FY2019-026 is # 47 in the FOIA queue.

Very Respectfully,
Caroline Gignoux
Attorney Advisor
Council on Environmental Quality
Office: (202) 456-5147

From: Council on Environmental Quality

Mr. Coleman,

Your FOIA is #47 on our FOIA queue. We have completed the search for responsive records and we are entering the review phase of processing your FOIA request.

Very Respectfully,
Howard Sun
Attorney Advisor
Council on Environmental Quality
Executive Office of the President
Office: (202) 456-3621

From: Council on Environmental Quality

Mr. Coleman,

My records indicate that you have not submitted the additional documentation I requested in order for you to be determined as a media requestor on behalf of Documented. Are you planning to submit the additional documentation I requested in my email January 31, 2019?

“In order to verify your identity and evaluate this request, please provide a signed copy of this request on your organizational letterhead. For your convenience, you may simply email this to me in a PDF file.”

If you are no longer interested in requesting media requester status on behalf of Documented, please let me know so I can provide you a fee assessment.

Very Respectfully,
Howard Sun
Attorney Advisor
Council on Environmental Quality
Executive Office of the President
Office: (202) 456-3621

From: Jesse Coleman

Below is the standard justification that we have used successfully for hundreds of FOIA requests to dozens of federal agencies.

We have been granted media status many. many times, and have never received a request for a signed letter on letterhead. In lieu of a letter, please look at our website, which includes my bio:
https://documented.net/author/jesse/

Documented seeks the above listed records for noncommercial use as a representative of the news media. Documented qualifies as a news media organization under the definition provided by Congress in the OPEN Government Act because it “gathers information of potential interest to a large segment of the public, and uses its editorial skills to turn the raw materials into a distinct work, and distributes that work to an audience.”
Specifically, Documented is seeking this FOIA request because the information in it is of interest to a large portion of the pubic, including the many concerned citizens that regularly acquire information through our extensive range of publications. These publications include websites, blogs, newsletters, reports, press statements, social media networks such as Facebook, and Twitter. In addition, Documented reaches out to many traditional news media outlets that regularly broadcast our publications through television, radio, print and electronic articles and interviews.
Documented plans to compile the information from this request into a distinct, original work that will be released to the public through the publications listed above.

From: Council on Environmental Quality

Mr. Coleman,

I am not just verifying whether Documented qualifies as a media requester. I also need to verify whether this email, coming from Muckruck, is actually coming from Jesse Coleman of Documented. Anyone can use Muckruck and claim they are submitting a requester on behalf of comeone else.

Very Respectfully,
Howard Sun
Attorney Advisor
Council on Environmental Quality
Executive Office of the President
Office: (202) 456-3621

From: Council on Environmental Quality

Mr. Coleman,

We haven’t heard from you in several weeks. We had asked for a signed copy of this FOIA on your organizational letterhead so we can verify your identity and adjudicate your request for media requester status for fee determination purposes. Are you still interested in submitting this FOIA request? Alternatively, if providing a signed FOIA request on your organizational letterhead is something that Documented is unwilling to provide, I can move forward with this request with the normal application of fees? Please let me know.

Very Respectfully,
Howard Sun
Attorney Advisor
Council on Environmental Quality
Executive Office of the President
Office: (202) 456-3621

From: Jesse Coleman

Here you go, a signed request on letterhead. Thanks for following up.

Best, Jesse

From: Council on Environmental Quality

Mr. Coleman,

Thank you. Your request for special requester status is approved. You are a media requester for fee determination purposes.

Very Respectfully,
Howard Sun
Attorney Advisor
Council on Environmental Quality
Executive Office of the President
Office: (202) 456-3621

From: Council on Environmental Quality

Mr. Coleman,

Attached please find the final response letter to the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request(s) that you sent to the Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ), case number(s) FY2019-026. I am the FOIA Public Liaison and you may contact me with questions regarding your case.

Very Respectfully,

Howard Sun

Attorney Advisor

Council on Environmental Quality

Executive Office of the President

Office: (202) 456-3621

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