July 19, 2012
National Declassification Center Issues Fifth Report
Washington, DC…The National Archives National Declassification Center (NDC) has issued its fifth biannual Report on Operations of the National Declassification Center, covering the period of January 1 through June 30, 2012. The report is online [www.archives.gov/declassification].
"The declassification review merry-go-round where records get on for a ride but are never able to get off is over,” said NDC Director Sheryl J. Shenberger. “The work of the NDC has streamlined the declassification process, implemented a proven quality assurance program, and developed a complete equity identification and reviewing curriculum. This has led to millions of pages that no longer contain sensitive information to move off that merry go round. No more records taking multiple rides on a single ticket!"
Report highlights include:
- The NDC has assessed 90% of the classified records backlog, with 55% cleared for final processing.
- The biggest challenge facing the NDC is records that were not properly reviewed for atomic energy information by the originating agency (known as the Kyl-Lott requirement). An interagency team including representatives from the Air Force, Army, Navy, Central Intelligence Agency, Defense Intelligence Agency, Department of State, Joint Chiefs of Staff, and Office of the Secretary of Defense has been working collaboratively to complete these reviews.
- The NDC has started review of special media records and has reviewed 1,341 motion pictures and 235 sound recordings.
- Through its Remote Archives Capture, the National Archives Office of Presidential Libraries prioritized 1,364,471 pages within certain collections of the administrations of Harry Truman through Jimmy Carter, as well as the China-associated materials within the Kissinger Personal Paper Collection, for completion of referral review.
The National Declassification Center was established by Executive Order (E.O.) 13526, “Classified National Security Information.” Under the direction of the Archivist of the United States, the NDC coordinates the timely and appropriate processing of referrals 25 years old and older classified records of permanent historical value.
Updated information on NDC records releases, initiatives, and upcoming forums is online at the NDC website [www.archives.gov/declassification]. Public input, questions and comments are welcome and can be sent to NDC@nara.gov or the NDC Blog [http://blogs.archives.gov/ndc].
The National Archives and Records Administration is an independent Federal agency that serves American democracy by safeguarding and preserving the records of our Government, ensuring that the people can discover, use, and learn from this documentary heritage. The National Archives ensures continuing access to the essential documentation of the rights of American citizens and the actions of their government. From the Declaration of Independence to accounts of ordinary Americans, the holdings of the National Archives directly touch the lives of millions of people. The agency supports democracy, promote civic education, and facilitate historical understanding of our national experience. The National Archives carries out its mission through a nationwide network of archives, records centers, and Presidential Libraries, and on the Internet at www.archives.gov.
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For press information, contact the National Archives Public Affairs staff at 202-357-5300.