Freedom of Information Act (FOIA)

NARA Privacy Act Systems: NARA 7

SYSTEM NAME: Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) Request Files and Mandatory Review of Classified Documents Request Files

SYSTEM LOCATION: Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) and mandatory review request files are maintained in the following locations:

       (1) Office of the Federal Register;
       (2) Office of the Inspector General;
       (3) Office of General Counsel;
       (4) Office of Research Services;
       (5) Office of Agency Services;
       (6) Individual Presidential libraries;
       (7) Presidential Materials Division; and
       (8) Center for Legislative Archives;

CATEGORIES OF INDIVIDUALS COVERED BY THE SYSTEM: Individuals covered by this system include persons who cite the FOIA to request access to records and persons who request the mandatory review of security-classified materials under Executive Order 13526 or predecessor orders.

CATEGORIES OF RECORDS IN THE SYSTEM: Files for requests made under the FOIA and the mandatory review provisions of Executive Order 13526 (or predecessor orders) may include: correspondence control registers, logs, and databases; requests for access or mandatory review; appeal letters from requestors; NARA replies to original requests and appeals, and supporting documents; Certificate of Citizenship; and other administrative forms used in the process. These files may also contain information or determinations furnished by and correspondence with other Federal agencies. FOIA and mandatory review request files may contain some or all of the following information about an individual: name; address; telephone number; position title; name of employer/institutional affiliation; marital status; birthplace; birth date; citizenship; research interests; other information provided by the requestor; and copies of documents furnished to the requestor.

AUTHORITY FOR MAINTENANCE OF THE SYSTEM: Executive Order 13526 and its predecessor and successor orders governing access to national security classified information; and 5 U.S.C. 552, as amended.

ROUTINE USES OF RECORDS MAINTAINED IN THE SYSTEM, INCLUDING CATEGORIES OF USERS AND THE PURPOSES OF SUCH USES: NARA maintains FOIA and mandatory review request files on individuals to record: requests for records under the FOIA; requests for access to security-classified materials under the mandatory review provisions of Executive Order 13526, as amended, and predecessor orders, and appeals of denials of access; actions taken on requests and appeals; and the status of requests and appeals in logs and databases. The records are also used to facilitate the preparation of statistical and other reports regarding use of the FOIA and the mandatory review provisions of Executive Order 13526.

NARA may disclose information in request files to agencies that have an equity in the requested records in order for those agencies to review records for possible declassification and release or in response to a request for information. The routine use statements A, E, F, G, and H, described in Appendix A also apply to this system of records.

POLICIES AND PRACTICES FOR STORING, RETRIEVING, ACCESSING, RETAINING, AND DISPOSING OF RECORDS IN THE SYSTEM:

STORAGE: Paper and electronic records.

RETRIEVABILITY: Information in FOIA and mandatory review request files may be retrieved by one or more of the following data elements: the individual's name; an alphanumeric case file number; a project number assigned to the request; the record group number; collection/series title, the type of request (FOIA or mandatory review); or the name, social security number, or military service number of the former civilian employee/veteran whose record was the subject of the request at the National Personnel Records Center.

SAFEGUARDS: During business hours, paper records are maintained in areas accessible to authorized NARA personnel. Electronic records are accessible via identity authentication at workstations located in attended offices or through a secure remote access network. After business hours, buildings have security guards and/or secured doors, and all entrances are monitored by electronic surveillance equipment.

RETENTION AND DISPOSAL: Some of the FOIA and mandatory review of classified documents request files are permanent records and are transferred to NARA in accordance with the disposition instructions in the NARA Records Schedule (a supplement to the NARA Files Maintenance and Records Disposition Manual). Other files have temporary dispositions and are destroyed in accordance with the instructions in the NARA Records Schedule. Individuals may request a copy of the disposition instructions from the NARA Privacy Act Officer.

SYSTEM MANAGER(S) AND ADDRESS: For FOIA and mandatory review request files, the system managers are:

  1. For FOIA request files maintained by the Office of Federal Register: Director of the Federal Register;
  2. For FOIA request files maintained by the Office of the Inspector General: Inspector General
  3. For FOIA request files for NARA's operational records: General Counsel;
  4. For FOIA and mandatory review request files maintained by organizational units within the Office of Research Services: Executive for Research Services;
  5. For FOIA request files pertaining to non-accessioned military and civilian personnel records located at the National Personnel Records Center (within the Office of Agency Services) records: Director of the National Personnel Records Center
  6. For FOIA request files pertaining to accessioned military personnel records located at the National Archives at St. Louis (within the Office of Research Services): Access Coordinator, National Archives at St, Louis
  7. For FOIA and mandatory review request files maintained by individual Presidential libraries: director of the individual library;
  8. For FOIA and mandatory review request files maintained by the Presidential Materials Division: Director of the Presidential Materials Division; and
  9. For FOIA and mandatory review request files maintained by the Center for Legislative Archives: Director of the Center for Legislative Archives.

The business addresses for these system managers are listed in Appendix B.

NOTIFICATION PROCEDURE: People interested in inquiring about their records should notify NARA Privacy Act Officer, at the address listed in Appendix B.

RECORD ACCESS PROCEDURES: People who wish to access their records should submit a request in writing to the NARA Privacy Act Officer at the address listed in Appendix B.

CONTESTING RECORD PROCEDURES: NARA rules for contesting the contents of a person's records and appealing initial determinations are found in 36 CFR Part 1202.

RECORD SOURCE CATEGORIES: Information in FOIA and mandatory review request files is obtained from people who cite the FOIA to request access to records, researchers who request mandatory review of security-classified records, NARA employees who maintain the files and handle FOIA and mandatory review requests and appeals, and other agencies that have reviewed the requested records.

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