Thursday, March 18, 2010

FOIA BILL: $111,930

Agency Demands $111,930 For Database Description


Greetings -- The Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse (TRAC) filed a
protest today with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). The
protest objects to a demand that the university-based data research
organization pay the agency $111,930 for a description of the information in
one of its databases.

The protest, in the form of a letter to USCIS, reminds the head of the
agency's Freedom of Information/Privacy Office of the Obama Administration's
December 8, 2009 Open Government Government Directive declaring that
openness and transparency would be the touchstones of the government and
instructing the agencies to take concrete steps to improve public access to
government information.

The information TRAC requested describes one of the databases used by the
agency to track its processing of requests for naturalization that USCIS
receives. The FOIA request had been pending in the agency without a response
for nearly 4 years -- 1,316 days.

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