Posts Tagged 'FOIA'

House and Senate pass FOIA Reform; move to reconcile differences

The Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) has made the news. Earlier this year, the House passed HR 653, FOIA Act, by voice vote. More recently, the Senate passed S 337, the FOIA Improvement Act, by unanimous consent. Please feel free to contact your representatives to thank them for their support!

Now the House and Senate must reconcile the differences between the two bills. The Congressional Research service outlined the differences in this summary and side-by-side comparison. It is hoped that reconciliation will be finalized before the end of the legislative session.

For more information, see the District Dispatch blog post.

 

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Senate passes Faster FOIA Act

On May 27th, the Senate passed by unanimous consent the Faster FOIA Act of 2011, S 627.  According to a floor statement by Senator Leahy, one of the bill’s sponsors, “This important bill will establish a bipartisan commission to examine the root causes of agency delays in processing Freedom of Information Act — FOIA — requests, and to recommend to the Congress and the President steps to help eliminate FOIA backlogs.”  Feel free to use Capwiz to thank Senators Mikulski and Cardin.

S 627 has now been moved to the House and referred to the Committee on Oversight & Government Reform.  A companion bill, HR 1564, was also introduced and referred to the same committee in mid-April.  Congressman Cummings serves on this committee.

For more details, please see the District Dispatch posting.

Bill to expand FOIA waits for president’s signature

S 3717 has passed in both the House and the Senate, and now awaits the president’s signature.  The bill amends several acts, including the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) to expand the public’s access to public documents dealing with business while still protecting business records.  For more information, please see the District Dispatch posting.


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