Responses to Congressional Committees (U.S. Army Corps of Engineers)

Michael Morisy filed this request with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers of the United States of America.
Tracking # FP-13-021316
Est. Completion None
Status
Fix Required

Communications

From: Michael Morisy

To Whom It May Concern:

This is a request under the Freedom of Information Act. I hereby request the following records:

A copy of all responses sent to Congressional committees between Jan.1, 2008 and the date that this request is processed. These communications are stored together and should be easily accessible.

I also request that, if appropriate, fees be waived as I believe this request is in the public interest. The requested documents will be made available to the general public free of charge as part of the public information service at MuckRock.com, processed by a representative of the news media/press and is made in the process of news gathering and not for commercial usage.

In the event that fees cannot be waived, 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,

Michael Morisy

From: Bartlett, Michelle J HQ02

Classification: UNCLASSIFIED
Caveats: NONE

Good afternoon Mr. Morisy,

This is in response to your Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request for information dated May 6, 2013, for all responses sent to Congressional committees between January 1, 2008, and the date your request was processed. Your request was received in this office on May 6, 2013, and assigned tracking number FP-13-021316. At this time we are unable to process your request as it does not reasonably describe the records sought.

In making a request you should be as specific as possible with regard to names, titles, dates, places, events, subjects, recipients, type of document, the offices likely to maintain the documents, etc. However, at a minimum, requests must describe the documents requested in sufficient detail to allow the FOIA Office to locate them with a reasonable amount of effort. Marks v. United States, 578 F.2d at 263 (declaring that “reasonable description relates not only to subject matter, but . . . also relates to place of search” and ruling that FBI was not required to search all field offices pursuant to requests for all records under the requesters name because such “broad, sweeping requests” do not “reasonably describe” records sought). The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers does not centrally maintain Congressional communications or store them together as your request suggests. Therefore, in order to accommodate your request we would have to contact every office within USACE to ascertain whether they have had any communications with Congressional Committees since January of 2008. Such efforts have been construed as unreasonably burdensome and not required by the FOIA. O’Harvey v. Office of Workers’ Comp. Programs, No. 95-01987, slip op. at 3 (E.D. Wash. Dec. 29, 1997) (finding request to be unreasonably burdensome because search would require agency “to review all of the case files maintained by the agency” and “would entail review of millions of pages of hard copies”).

If you would like to narrow the scope of your request such that a reasonable search can be conducted please provide a response within 10 days of this letter or I will administratively close your file and take no further action. If you wish to discuss your request I may be reached at (703) 428-7207 or by emailing michelle.bartlett@usace.army.mil.

Thank you,

Michelle Bartlett

Michelle Bartlett
Office of Counsel
U.S. Army Corps of Engineers,
Humphreys Engineer Center Support Activity (HECSA)
7701 Telegraph Road
Kingman Building
Alexandria, VA 22315-3860
Office Phone: (703) 428-7207

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or by email at Michelle.Bartlett@usace.army.mil. Thank you.

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