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US Department of State stonewalling FOIA request

I sent the following email to FOIAStatus@state.gov today:

Eight days ago, I sent you an email requesting the status of my FOIA Request, Case Number 200901145. I have not received a reply. I also sent an email to you about a year ago and have not gotten a reply from that one either.

I have made 4 telephone calls to your office and been unable on any occasion to receive any information on when I might expect to receive a response to my FOIA except that it could take “up to a year.” My request was filed in January of 2009.

I expect a response within 5 business days as to exactly when I might expect to receive a response.

The Freedom of Information Act.

2 Responses to US Department of State stonewalling FOIA request

  1. avatar
    BatGuano June 26, 2010 at 11:14 am #

    have they notified you that they would release your request ? as far as i can find that’s supposed to happen in the first 20 days.

  2. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy June 26, 2010 at 12:12 pm #

    BatGuano: have they notified you that they would release your request ? as far as i can find that’s supposed to happen in the first 20 days.

    I filed my request on January 27, 2009 and they “began processing” it on April 2, 2009. They failed to comply with the Statue which says:

    (6)(A) Each agency, upon any request for records made under paragraph (1), (2), or (3) of this subsection, shall–

    (i) determine within ten days twenty days (excepting Saturdays, Sundays, and legal public holidays) after the receipt of any such request whether to comply with such request and shall immediately notify the person making such request of such determination and the reasons therefor, and of the right of such person to appeal to the head of the agency any adverse determination; and

    The letter said:

    While we will make every effort to meet the time limits cited in the FOIA (5 U.S.C. § 552), unusual circumstances may arise for extending the time limit (see enclosure). We appreciate your patience in this matter.

    I was never able to figure out what their “unusual circumstances were.” I think the enclosures were all boiler plate stuff. Normal agency workload is no excuse, says the Statute.