Emergency Intercom Tests (WMATA)

Tom Nash filed this request with the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority of Washington, DC .
Est. Completion None
Status
Payment Required

Communications

From: Tom Nash

To Whom It May Concern:

Pursuant to the District of Columbia Freedom of Information Act of 1974, D.C. Code Ann. § 2-531 et seq. ("D.C. Act"), I hereby request the following records:

All reports showing the results of emergency intercom testing performed on Metro trains between 2009 and the time this request is processed.

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 15 business days, as the statute requires.

Sincerely,

Tom Nash

From: Thom, Keysia A.

Dear Mr. Nash,

This acknowledges receipt of your request for copies of all reports showing the results of emergency intercom testing performed on Metrorail trains between 2009 and the present. Your request references the District of Columbia Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). The Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority is not subject to the FOIA, but we have adopted a Public Access to Records Policy (PARP), which is base on the federal FOIA. Thus your request is being processed in accordance with the PARP. The PARP can be viewed on our website at http://www.wmata.com/about_metro/public_rr.cfm, under
the section marked, "Legal Affairs." Generally, we aim to issue decisions on a request for records within 20 working days after the date of receipt of the request.

Although we cannot yet provide any documents, we can impart some general information:

Exemptions:

Certain types of information are exempt from disclosure under the PARP. The exemptions include the following: information that could compromise WMATA's infrastructure or security; contractor proprietary information; internal deliberations on policy matters; attorney-client privileged communications; information that if released would cause a clearly unwarranted invasion of personal privacy; certain information compiled for law enforcement purposes; and SmarTrip(r) and customer financial information. WMATA's response will not include any exempt information.

Fees:

Our PARP provides for the assessment of fees associated with your request if it takes more than two hours of staff time to search for, assemble and review the records that you requested. This fee shall be calculated at the employees' basic rate of pay, plus an additional 50% to cover benefits, for the time spent responding to this request. Also, there is a 15 cents per page copying fee beyond the first 100 pages. In general, a request is considered an agreement to pay all applicable fees. However, we note that you have
requested a fee waiver. We do not anticipate that there will be a fee associated with your request, but will contact you for additional information to determine your fee waiver eligibility if there is a fee.

Future correspondence regarding your request should reference the PARP request number noted above and be directed to my attention. You may also contact me via telephone at 202-962-2058 or via email at kthom@wmata.com<mailto:kthom@wmata.com>.

From: MuckRock.com

To Whom It May Concern:

I wanted to follow up on the following Freedom of Information request, copied below, and originally submitted on June 29, 2013. Please let me know when I can expect to receive a response, or if further clarification is needed.

Thank you for your help.

From: Thom, Keysia A.

Dear Mr. Nash,

We are in the process of gathering estimates for the cost associated with processing your request and will get back to you shortly.

From: MuckRock.com

To Whom It May Concern:

I wanted to follow up on the following Freedom of Information request, copied below, and originally submitted on June 29, 2013. Please let me know when I can expect to receive a response, or if further clarification is needed.

Thank you for your help.

From: MuckRock.com

To Whom It May Concern:

I wanted to follow up on the following Freedom of Information request, copied below, and originally submitted on June 29, 2013. Please let me know when I can expect to receive a response, or if further clarification is needed.

Thank you for your help.

From: MuckRock.com

To Whom It May Concern:

I wanted to follow up on the following Freedom of Information request, copied below, and originally submitted on June 29, 2013. Please let me know when I can expect to receive a response, or if further clarification is needed.

Thank you for your help.

From: MuckRock.com

To Whom It May Concern:

I wanted to follow up on the following Freedom of Information request, copied below, and originally submitted on June 29, 2013. Please let me know when I can expect to receive a response, or if further clarification is needed.

Thank you for your help.

From: MuckRock.com

To Whom It May Concern:

I wanted to follow up on the following Freedom of Information request, copied below, and originally submitted on June 29, 2013. Please let me know when I can expect to receive a response, or if further clarification is needed.

Thank you for your help.

From: MuckRock.com

To Whom It May Concern:

I wanted to follow up on the following Freedom of Information request, copied below, and originally submitted on June 29, 2013. Please let me know when I can expect to receive a response, or if further clarification is needed.

Thank you for your help.

From: MuckRock.com

To Whom It May Concern:

I wanted to follow up on the following Freedom of Information request, copied below, and originally submitted on June 29, 2013. Please let me know when I can expect to receive a response, or if further clarification is needed.

Thank you for your help.

From: MuckRock.com

To Whom It May Concern:

I wanted to follow up on the following Freedom of Information request, copied below, and originally submitted on June 29, 2013. Please let me know when I can expect to receive a response, or if further clarification is needed.

Thank you for your help.

From: Thom, Keysia A.

Dear Mr. Nash,

I am working on a response for your PARP request and hope to send it out to you by next week.
Best Regards,

Keysia A. Thom
PARP/Privacy Policy Administrator
WMATA Office of General Counsel
600 5th Street, NW
Washington, DC 20001
202.962.2058 (direct line)
202.962.2550 (facsimile)

THIS E-MAIL MESSAGE IS PRIVILEGED AND CONFIDENTIAL INFORMATION INTENDED ONLY FOR THE USE OF THE RECIPIENT NAMED ABOVE.  IF THE READER OF THIS MESSAGE IS NOT THE NAMED RECIPIENT, OR THE AGENT RESPONSIBLE TO DELIVER IT TO THE NAMED RECIPIENT, YOU ARE NOTIFIED THAT ANY DISSEMINATION, DISTRIBUTION, COPYING OR OTHER USE OF THIS INFORMATION/COMMUNICATION IS STRICTLY PROHIBITED AND NO PRIVILEGE IS WAIVED.  IF YOU HAVE RECEIVED THIS COMMUNICATION IN ERROR, PLEASE NOTIFY THE ABOVE-NAMED INDIVIDUAL IMMEDIATELY.

From: Thom, Keysia A.

Dear Mr. Nash,

This is regarding your Public Access to Records Policy (PARP) request for all reports showing the results of emergency intercom testing performed on Metro trains between 2009 to the present. You have also asked for a fee waiver.

The total staff time involved with processing your request is 76.5 hours. Therefore, your request is burdensome. The courts have recognized that an agency need not honor a request that is unreasonably burdensome. See Nation Magazine v. United States Customs Serv., 71 F.3d 885, 891-92 (D.C. Cir. 1995); American Federation of Government Employees, Local 2782 v. U.S. Dep't of Commerce, 907 F.2d 203, 208-09 (D.C. Cir. 1990). It is the requester's responsibility to frame requests that are not so broad as to impose an unreasonable burden on the agency. The FOIA, upon which the PARP is patterned, was not intended to reduce government agencies to full time investigators on behalf of requesters to the detriment of their main mission. See Brophy v. United States Department of DOD, 2006 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 11620 (D.D.C. Mar. 8, 2006), citing Judicial Watch, Inc. v. Export-Import Bank, 108 F.Supp. 2d 19, 27 (D.D.C. 2000), quotations and citations omitted.

The following is the breakdown of time and costs:

1) Periodic Inspections Data - The estimated cost for processing this request item is $4,421.00. This represents $2,936.00 for 43 hours of staff time (45 hours of staff time - 2 hours of staff time, which are provided free of charge) to retrieve the records. We estimate that this will generate approximately 10,000 pages and cost $1,485.00 (10,000 pages - 100 pages which are provided free of charge at 15 cents per page).

2) Testing Results and Quality Assurance Audits - The estimated cost for processing this request item is $4,421.00. This represents $2,974.00 for 33.5 hours of staff time to retrieve the records. We estimate that this will generate approximately 150 pages and cost $22.50 (150 pages at 15 cents per page).

We require that you narrow your request so we can process it in the most efficient and economical way. For instance, it would be helpful if you narrowed the date range. Please respond by December 24, 2013.

We note that you requested that we waive the fees for the following reasons (1) the request is in the public interest; (2) the records will be made available to the general public free of charge through a public information service at MuckRock.com, processed by a representative of the news media/press; and (3) the request is made in the process of news gathering and not for commercial usage. Alternatively, you stated that you want to be informed of the charges if the fees cannot be waived. We are not able to determine whether you are eligible for a fee waiver in accordance with PARP §§ 8.4 and 8.6 because your statements are conclusory.

When you submit your narrowed request; if you are still interested in pursuing a fee waiver, please submit a response to the following questions so we can determine whether you are eligible:

1. Describe the purpose for your request, of these records, and your intended use of them.

2. Explain how disclosure of these records will significantly further the public's understanding of the operations or activities of the Authority.

3. Describe how you intend to disseminate these records to the public, and how broad an audience you anticipate the disclosure will receive. Information regarding the number of verified "hits" on a daily basis on your website would be helpful.

Future correspondence regarding your request should reference the PARP request number noted above. If you have any legal questions, you may contact Sonia A. Bacchus, Chief Counsel, Customer Service and Regulatory Affairs at 202-962-1093 or sbacchus@wmata.com<mailto:sbacchus@wmata.com>. You may also contact me at 202-962-2058 or kthom@wmata.com<mailto:kthom@wmata.com> if you have any questions relating to administrative matters.

Sincerely,

Keysia A. Thom
PARP/Privacy Policy Administrator
WMATA Office of General Counsel
600 5th Street, NW
Washington, DC 20001
202.962.2058 (direct line)
202.962.2550 (facsimile)

THIS E-MAIL MESSAGE IS PRIVILEGED AND CONFIDENTIAL INFORMATION INTENDED ONLY FOR THE USE OF THE RECIPIENT NAMED ABOVE. IF THE READER OF THIS MESSAGE IS NOT THE NAMED RECIPIENT, OR THE AGENT RESPONSIBLE TO DELIVER IT TO THE NAMED RECIPIENT, YOU ARE NOTIFIED THAT ANY DISSEMINATION, DISTRIBUTION, COPYING OR OTHER USE OF THIS INFORMATION/COMMUNICATION IS STRICTLY PROHIBITED AND NO PRIVILEGE IS WAIVED. IF YOU HAVE RECEIVED THIS COMMUNICATION IN ERROR, PLEASE NOTIFY THE ABOVE-NAMED INDIVIDUAL IMMEDIATELY.

From: Tom Nash

Hi Keysia,

How about we just go with the most recent periodic inspection and the most recent audit. Hopefully that won't take much time to search out?

Thanks

Tom

From: Thom, Keysia A.

Mr. Nash,

Thank you for narrowing your request. We have forwarded your request to the relevant departments for a response.

Keysia A. Thom
PARP/Privacy Policy Administrator
WMATA Office of General Counsel
600 5th Street, NW
Washington, DC 20001
202.962.2058 (direct line)
202.962.2550 (facsimile)

THIS E-MAIL MESSAGE IS PRIVILEGED AND CONFIDENTIAL INFORMATION INTENDED ONLY FOR THE USE OF THE RECIPIENT NAMED ABOVE.  IF THE READER OF THIS MESSAGE IS NOT THE NAMED RECIPIENT, OR THE AGENT RESPONSIBLE TO DELIVER IT TO THE NAMED RECIPIENT, YOU ARE NOTIFIED THAT ANY DISSEMINATION, DISTRIBUTION, COPYING OR OTHER USE OF THIS INFORMATION/COMMUNICATION IS STRICTLY PROHIBITED AND NO PRIVILEGE IS WAIVED.  IF YOU HAVE RECEIVED THIS COMMUNICATION IN ERROR, PLEASE NOTIFY THE ABOVE-NAMED INDIVIDUAL IMMEDIATELY.

From: MuckRock.com

To Whom It May Concern:

I wanted to follow up on the following Freedom of Information request, copied below, and originally submitted on June 29, 2013. Please let me know when I can expect to receive a response, or if further clarification is needed.

Thank you for your help.

From: MuckRock.com

To Whom It May Concern:

I wanted to follow up on the following Freedom of Information request, copied below, and originally submitted on June 29, 2013. Please let me know when I can expect to receive a response, or if further clarification is needed.

Thank you for your help.

From: Thom, Keysia A.

Dear Mr. Nash,

We are in the process of drafting an estimate of the costs associated with this request and anticipate providing a response shortly.
Best Regards,

Keysia A. Thom
PARP/Privacy Policy Administrator
WMATA Office of General Counsel
600 5th Street, NW
Washington, DC  20001
202.962.2058 (direct line)
202.962.2550 (facsimile)

THIS E-MAIL MESSAGE IS PRIVILEGED AND CONFIDENTIAL INFORMATION INTENDED ONLY FOR THE USE OF THE RECIPIENT NAMED ABOVE.  IF THE READER OF THIS MESSAGE IS NOT THE NAMED RECIPIENT, OR THE AGENT RESPONSIBLE TO DELIVER IT TO THE NAMED RECIPIENT, YOU ARE NOTIFIED THAT ANY DISSEMINATION, DISTRIBUTION, COPYING OR OTHER USE OF THIS INFORMATION/COMMUNICATION IS STRICTLY PROHIBITED AND NO PRIVILEGE IS WAIVED.  IF YOU HAVE RECEIVED THIS COMMUNICATION IN ERROR, PLEASE NOTIFY THE ABOVE-NAMED INDIVIDUAL IMMEDIATELY.

From: MuckRock.com

To Whom It May Concern:

I wanted to follow up on the following Freedom of Information request, copied below, and originally submitted on June 29, 2013. Please let me know when I can expect to receive a response, or if further clarification is needed.

Thank you for your help.

From: MuckRock.com

To Whom It May Concern:

I wanted to follow up on the following Freedom of Information request, copied below, and originally submitted on June 29, 2013. Please let me know when I can expect to receive a response, or if further clarification is needed.

Thank you for your help.

From: Thom, Keysia A.

Dear Mr. Nash:

The estimated processing fees associated with your Public Access to Records Policy (PARP) request for WMATA's reports showing the results of the most recent periodic inspection or audits regarding emergency intercom testing performed on Metrorail trains is $945.00. This represents $773.00 for 14 hours (16 hours of staff time - the first 2 hours which are provided free of charge) of staff time to retrieve the records and review them for exempt material. This also represents $172.50 for 1,150 (1,250 pages - 100 pages which are provided free of charge at 15 cents per page) pages for copying costs.

Pursuant to Section 8.9 of the PARP, an advance payment is required when fees exceed $250. Therefore, please remit a certified check or money order in the amount of $945.00, made payable to the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority, to my attention by April 30, 2014 or let us know whether you want to narrow your request further. The records will be provided as soon as possible after receipt of payment, along with reimbursement of any excess payment or request for additional payment. However, if we do not receive the payment by April 30th, or a narrowed request, we will close your request file.

Future correspondence regarding your request should reference the PARP request number noted above and be directed to my attention. If you have any legal questions, please contact Sonia A. Bacchus, Chief Counsel, Customer Service and Regulatory Affairs, at 202-962-1093 or sbacchus@wmata.com<mailto:sbacchus@wmata.com>. You may also contact me via telephone at 202-962-2058 or via email at kthom@wmata.com<mailto:kthom@wmata.com>.
Best Regards,

Keysia A. Thom
PARP/Privacy Policy Administrator
WMATA Office of General Counsel
600 5th Street, NW
Washington, DC 20001
202.962.2058 (direct line)
202.962.2550 (facsimile)

THIS E-MAIL MESSAGE IS PRIVILEGED AND CONFIDENTIAL INFORMATION INTENDED ONLY FOR THE USE OF THE RECIPIENT NAMED ABOVE. IF THE READER OF THIS MESSAGE IS NOT THE NAMED RECIPIENT, OR THE AGENT RESPONSIBLE TO DELIVER IT TO THE NAMED RECIPIENT, YOU ARE NOTIFIED THAT ANY DISSEMINATION, DISTRIBUTION, COPYING OR OTHER USE OF THIS INFORMATION/COMMUNICATION IS STRICTLY PROHIBITED AND NO PRIVILEGE IS WAIVED. IF YOU HAVE RECEIVED THIS COMMUNICATION IN ERROR, PLEASE NOTIFY THE ABOVE-NAMED INDIVIDUAL IMMEDIATELY.

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