|Multi Request||FOIA March Madness 2019 - Exhibition bracket - FOIA funding, staffing, and activities|
|Submitted||March 15, 2019|
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To Whom It May Concern:
Pursuant to the Freedom of Information Act, I hereby request the following records:
The following materials related to the funding, staffing, and activities of this FOIA office:
- - - > > > for the years 2017, 2018, and 2019, all budget materials or plans applicable to offices responsible for processing and response to FOIA requests and appeals submitted to this Bureau and its offices.
- - - > > > for the years 2017 and 2018, staffing reports and plans, including the count of employee numbers and for offices responsible for processing and responses to FOIA requests and appeals submitted to this Bureau and its offices.
- If this report is available in a form that includes the total number of hours worked for FOIA personnel, that version would be preferred.
- If reports are available for each month, that version is preferred.
- According to this agency’s “About Us” website (https://www.doi.gov/foia/About-Us):
“The Department has decentralized its FOIA operations among 13 bureaus and offices, each of which has a Bureau/Office FOIA Officer leading its separately managed and resourced FOIA Program. Secretarial Order 3244 (November 12, 2002) anchored Bureau/Office FOIA Offices within their respective CIOs' Offices. That order was superseded by Secretarial Order 3309 (December 14, 2010), which replaced Bureau/Office CIOs with Assistant Directors for Information Resources and initiated a series of significant ongoing organizational changes as part of the Department's IT Transformation.
Bureau/office FOIA Officers are responsible for tracking, managing and responding to FOIA requests for records in their organization's possession and control, and administering their organization's FOIA programs. In addition to Bureau/Office FOIA Officers, some bureaus/offices also have Regional FOIA Coordinators and Field Offices that process requests. Some bureaus/offices have their program offices (i.e., the offices whose records are the subject of the requests) prepare the responses to FOIA requests. These responses are reviewed by the FOIA Officer or Regional FOIA Coordinator and the appropriate FOIA attorney (when the decision is to withhold information, make a discretionary release, or deny a fee waiver).”
- - - > > > all staffing reports and plans for the year 2019
- If reports are available for each month, such a version is preferred.
- - - > > > contact information, including email addresses and phone numbers (if available), for each FOIA officer currently tasked with an open public records request
***FOIA requester categories***
- - - > > > for the years 2017 and 2018, the designated category of each requester of a FOIA request to this office, including those assigned to the following categories:
* educational and noncommercial scientific institutions;
* representative of news media requester;
* all other requesters
- If this information is kept in an aggregate form including the number of requesters by fee category by year, a copy of this report will suffice to fulfill this element of the request.
***FOIA fee waivers***
- - - > > > for the years 2017 and 2018, the number of fee waivers granted by this office and, if available, the tracking numbers for the FOIA requests to which waivers were granted
***FOIA fee collection***
- - - > > > for the years 2017 and 2018, any report capturing the following information:
* total estimated processing and copy fees quoted to FOIA requesters
* total processing and copy fees collected by this Bureau from each fee category
- If this information is kept in an aggregate form, such as a FOIA log, that material would be sufficient to satisfy the bullet points “FOIA requester categories” and “FOIA fee collection” if it captures the following information:
* FOIA tracking number
* requester fee category
* amount processing and copy fees associated with the request
* the status of the requester’s payment for the request
***FOIA Policy Staff audit reports or summaries***
- - - > > > for the years 2017 and 2018, any and all reports of self-assessments conducted by FOIA Policy Staff
- According to the U.S. Department of the Interior 2018 Chief FOIA Officer Report, “Department FOIA Policy Staff regularly conduct self- assessments of the Department’s FOIA program, by reviewing Annual Report data, conducting audits of each bureau at least bi-annually, and reviewing and updating processing procedures, including its FOIA regulations.”
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.
Your request has been received and has been assigned tracking number
NPS-2019-00672. All future correspondence relating to this request should
reference this tracking number.
In accordance with 43 CFR 2.15
National Park Service processes requests on a first-in, first-out basis
within several processing tracks. However, before I can determine which
category to place your request into, I need to make sure that I am
correctly understanding what you are asking for. I would therefore like to
schedule a time to discuss your request in more detail. Can you let me know
what time would work for you.
Hello Ms. Wilson,
Thanks so much for your message. I'd be happy to speak Monday morning; I should be free around 11:30 a.m. EDT, if you want to give me a ring at 617-299-1832.
Thank you for taking the time to discuss the scope of your request with me
earlier this week. Based on the information you provided, we have
determined that your request is granted in part. I am providing you with
copies of two spreadsheets "FY2017 Calculations for FOIA costs" and "FY2018
Calculations for FOIA costs", which were prepared as part of the process of
responding to a data call from the Department of the Interior during their
preparation of annual FOIA reports. These spreadsheets are responsive to
the portions of your request seeking "Budget materials" and "Staffing
orders/reports/contacts". As we discussed, our FOIA tracking system does
not track hours worked to individual staff levels, but rather by staff
category, e.g. clerical, professional, or managerial. Additionally, staff
who have assigned FOIA duties are not required to track their hours within
the timekeeping system to the level of granularity that would allow us to
provide data showing the exact number of hours worked for FOIA personnel.
Regarding your request for "All staffing reports and plans for the year
2019", we have no responsive records, as the National Park Service program
is decentralized and "costs" are paid by park, regional, and program
offices out of their base funding. Subsequently, there is no line item for
FOIA costs or budget data. Regarding the portion of your request that asks
for "contact information" for NPS FOIA staff, that information is available
online at: https://www.nps.gov/aboutus/foia/foia-officers.htm.
The spreadsheet "FY2017 - FY2018 fee classifications list" is responsive to
the portion of your request that sought "FOIA requester categories", while
the spreadsheet "FY2017 - FY2018 FOIA fee waivers" is responsive to your
request for "FOIA fee waivers". Lastly, the spreadsheet "FY2017 - FY2018
FOIA billable fees list" is responsive to your request for "FOIA fee
We have no records responsive to the last portion of your request for "FOIA
Policy Staff audit reports or summaries", as such records would be held by
the Department of the Interior's FOIA Policy office or the recently
established Deputy Chief FOIA Officer (DCFO), which is part of the DOI
Should you consider the NO RECORDS portions of this response to be a denial
of your request, you have the right to appeal. You may file an appeal by
Freedom of Information Act Appeals Officer
Office of the Solicitor
U.S. Department of the Interior
1849 C Street, NW
Washington, D.C. 20240
Your appeal must be received no later than 90 workdays after the date of
this final response. The appeal should be marked, both on the envelope and
the face of the appeal letter, with the legend "FREEDOM OF INFORMATION
APPEAL." Your appeal should be accompanied by a copy of your original
request and copies of all correspondence between yourself and the National
Park Service related to this request, along with any information you have
which leads you to believe the records are available, including where they
might be found, if the location is known to you. Please note, appeals
received after 5 p.m. EST will be considered to have been received as of
the following day.
Also as part of the 2007 OPEN Government Act FOIA amendments, the Office of
Government Information Services (OGIS) was created to offer mediation
services to resolve disputes between FOIA requesters and Federal agencies
as a nonexclusive alternative to litigation. Using OGIS services does not
affect your right to pursue litigation.
You may contact OGIS in any of the following ways:
Office of Government Information Services (OGIS)
National Archives and Records Administration
8601 Adelphi Road
College Park, MD 20740-6001
Additionally, because the National Park Service creates and maintains law
enforcement records, we are required by the Department of Justice to
provide the following information, even though it may or may not apply to
your specific request. Congress excluded three discrete categories of law
enforcement and national security records from the requirements of the
FOIA. See 5 U.S.C. 552(c) (2006 & Supp. IV 2010). This response is limited
to those records that are subject to the requirements of the FOIA. This is
a standard notification that we are required to give all our requesters and
should not be taken as an indication that excluded records do, or do not,
Please do not hesitate to contact me, both as the NPS FOIA Liaison and the
person who processed your request, with any further questions or concerns.
I can be reached at the address above or by phone at 303-969-2959. I can
also be reached via e-mail at email@example.com.