Tea party scandal brews FOIA backlog at FEC

By Dave Levinthal

Media and public wait for information from election agency as Congress seeks IRS-related information.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Internal Revenue Service":

"… Federal Election Commission with demands for information connected to the Internal Revenue Service tea party targeting scandal and the unrelated political activities of a fo …"

IMPACT: Rhode Island to publish more state records online

By Nicholas Kusnetz

IMPACT: New 'Transparency Portal' provides easy access to government data

Excerpts from this story referencing "Global Integrity":

"… corruption risk released in March. The project is a collaboration between Global Integrity, Public Radio International and the Center for Public Integrity. Global In …"

"… Integrity, Public Radio International and the Center for Public Integrity. Global Integrity has been working with Chafee’s office to help bolster the state’s open …"

Transparency in Texas: Dallas suburbs lead in attempts to deny public information requests

By Kelley Shannon

Dallas suburbs lead in attempts to deny public information requests

Excerpts from this story referencing "Texas":

"… eral sprawling Dallas-area suburbs tallied the highest rate of requests to Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott last year to keep government information secr …"

"… blic Integrity.The probe examined the number of attempts by the 20 largest Texas cities to block public requests for information in 2011, then looked at ho …"

"… hat Abbott allow the withholding of documents sought by citizens under the Texas Public Information Act. Next up were McAllen, Garland, Mesquite, Plano and …"

"… he attorney general’s office.)Abbott is involved because, in most cases, Texas law requires that governmental bodies seeking to withhold information ask …"

The state of open records laws: Access denied

By Caitlin Ginley

State statutes promise access to information, but are riddled with exemptions.

Excerpts from this story referencing "North Carolina":

"… Carolina and Virginia) and certain types of correspondence (New Jersey and North Carolina).Lucy Dalglish, executive director of the Reporters Committee, called the …"

Maine governor, legislators use 'F' grade as opportunity to push reform

By Caitlin Ginley

Maine's government plans to take action after receiving a F on the State Integrity Investigation.

Grading the nation: How accountable is your state?

By Caitlin Ginley

Our State Integrity Investigation reveals corruption risks in all 50 states

Excerpts from this story referencing "Massachusetts":

"… raft legislation and all related documents are withheld from the public.In Massachusetts, the barriers to access are especially daunting. Not only are the legislat …"

Justice backs new category of secret gov't files

By The Associated Press

Obama administration seeks to reinstitute 2011 Supreme Court ruling on FOIA requests

Excerpts from this story referencing "president":

"… from Congress," Grassley said. "There's a complete disconnect between the president's grand pronouncements about transparency and the actions of his political …"

Government can't keep up with information requests

By The Associated Press

Obama administration responded to more requests than ever in 2011, but still lags behind

Excerpts from this story referencing "Obama administration":

"… tal Service.By Associated Press writers Richard Lardner and Ted Bridis. …"

"… to keep up with that demand by devoting more resources to it."Even as the Obama administration increased its efforts, people submitted 587,815 requests for information i …"

Millions of federal court records are being destroyed to save money

By Maya Rhodan

National Archives and the Judiciary have begun destroying federal case records to cut costs

State Department FOIA requests unanswered four long years later

By Josh Israel

President Obama promised more responsivenes but delays in processing Freedom of Information Act requests are still legendary

Judge orders FBI to cough up information about a previously secret computer drive

By Aaron Mehta

FBI must respond by June 30 to federal judge's order for info about hidden computer drives

White House visitor logs riddled with holes

By Fred Schulte and Viveca Novak

Obama touts release of Secret Service logs but data has huge gaps

Excerpts from this story referencing "Hillary Rodham Clinton":

"… Similarly, the logs list just 21 visits for “Hillary R. Clinton” or “Hillary Rodham Clinton.” Most are social or ceremonial events; seven are described in the logs …"

FOIA performance is getting worse

By Laurel Adams

Despite promises for more government openness, the Obama administration actually approved fewer Freedom of Information Act requests for fede

Excerpts from this story referencing "Information":

"… ment openness, the Obama administration actually approved fewer Freedom of Information Act requests for federal documents last year.In 2010, government agencies …"

EPA inspector general responds to FOIA review by Grassley and Issa

By Laurel Adams

The inspector general at the Environmental Protection Agency has issued a special report responding to a request by Sen. Charles Grassley an

White House sets "CUI" designation for sensitive government documents

By Amy Biegelsen

President Barack Obama’s new executive order creating a uniform category for federal documents that are sensitive but not classified is an a

Excerpts from this story referencing "Barton Gellman":

"… rmer Vice President Dick Cheney who, according to Washington Post reporter Barton Gellman, would stamp papers “Treat As” classified when the official designatio …"

A peek inside State Department's FOIA procedures

By Laurel Adams

The State Department uses retired Foreign Service officers to help determine what internal documents and memos can be released for Freedom o

Excerpts from this story referencing "Republicans":

"… Department’s FOIA requests.”The new watchdog report was prepared after Republicans Sen. Charles Grassley and Rep. Darrell Issa asked all federal inspectors g …"

DOJ releases, then tries to reel back FOIA documents in Holocaust case

By Amy Biegelsen

A federal government ban on Holocaust survivors suing to collect on European insurance policies from that era may be on a shaky legal footin

Excerpts from this story referencing "director":

"… partment did not respond to Center requests for comment.Lucy Dalglish, the director for the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press advocacy group, says …"

"… n of this story, we incorrectly reported that Lucy Dalglish was the former director of Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press. Dalglish is still directo …"

"… irector of Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press. Dalglish is still director of the group. …"

Republicans ask watchdogs to review FOIA request process

By Laurel Adams

Inspectors general at the Energy Department and Social Security Administration say their review of FOIA procedures at the request of senior

Excerpts from this story referencing "House Oversight Committee":

"… ial government decisions.Issa and Grassley, the ranking Republicans on the House Oversight Committee and the Senate Finance Committee, respectively, asked all federal inspecto …"

FOIA, meet POIA: Advocates will push for it again in 2011

By Amy Biegelsen

Among the many legislative leftovers still sitting in the freezer as the 111th Congress adjourns, the Public Online Information Act (POIA) l

SEC loses short-lived FOIA exemption in financial reform law

By Laurel Adams

In a victory for advocates of government transparency, Congress has voted to repeal a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) exemption for the Se

Excerpts from this story referencing "Mary Schapiro":

"… Exemption 8 to protect confidential information from release.SEC Chairman Mary Schapiro unsuccessfully sought to keep the expanded FOIA exemption, calling it “c …"

SEC hurries to clarify new FOIA exemption amid uproar

By Ariel Wittenberg

The head of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission today insisted that language tucked inside the massive financial reform law does not

Description of citizenship database available – if you’re willing to pay nearly $112,000

By Nick Schwellenbach

After taking nearly four years to respond to a Freedom of Information Act request, the U.S. immigration agency is demanding $111,930 for rec

Excerpts from this story referencing "David Burnham":

"… ems is typically such a simple matter,” TRAC co-directors Susan Long and David Burnham wrote in a March 18 letter to the agency. “Even for a large database con …"

New House bill would put gov’t documents online

By Julie Vorman

No government information would be considered “public” unless it is posted on the Internet in user-friendly formats, according to a House bi

Government transparency under Obama misses the mark

By Jim Morris

To mark Sunshine Week, open-government groups are assessing President Barack Obama’s pledge to make the federal bureaucracy more open and le

Excerpts from this story referencing "George W. Bush":

"… earlong attempt to obtain emergency AIDS relief data from former President George W. Bush’s State Department four years ago. At one point, the department sought t …"

Center files FOIA suit against Education Department

By Peter Newbatt Smith

On President Obama’s first full day in office, a White House news release announced that the president was “instruct[ing] all members of his

Despite new FOIA rules, old staff cuts may delay requests

By Te-Ping Chen

Since President Obama reversed former Attorney General John Ashcroft’s denial-prone directive on Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests

Excerpts from this story referencing "Obama":

"… esources — and can’t be solved by an election alone.” …"

"… quests — or one in three.The passage of the 2007 Open Government Act and Obama’s January 21 FOIA memo not withstanding, Rick Blum of the Sunshine in Go …"

"… for a president to do more to support openness and transparency than what Obama did on Day One,” says Blum. “But fixing FOIA will take time and resour …"

Filing a FOIA — How to get records out of the government

By Andrew Green

PaperTrail, as our name implies, delights in accessing government records and reports. Now, to celebrate the mid-point of Sunshine Week, her

Excerpts from this story referencing "Privacy":

"… or federal and state records under the U.S. Freedom of Information Act and Privacy Act, as well as under state statutes.Getting files under FOIA has historic …"

"… your request.• To gain access to your own files, make requests under the Privacy Act. Check the National Freedom of Information Coalition site under the Sa …"

Let the sun shine In during Sunshine Week

By Andrew Green

This marks one of PaperTrail’s favorite weeks of the year. No, not Spring Break. Sunshine Week....

New attitude towards FOIA, but who’s going to clear the backlog?

By Kat Aaron

President Obama sent a clear message to government officials in one of his first acts in office: From now on, we will comply with the spirit

Excerpts from this story referencing "Obama":

"… h Tools” section and learn how to submit your own FOIA request. …"

"… erTrail will keep an eye on these reports as they come in.Meanwhile, maybe Obama’s charge will translate into more money and staff for FOIA requests. Fee …"

Excessive executive secrecy

By The Center for Public Integrity

More documents are classified under Bush despite initial promises of openness