Office of Government Information Services (OGIS)

Meetings

Accordion

Materials Posted Before the Meeting


Materials Posted After the Meeting


Recommendations Passed by the FOIA Advisory Committee on May 1, 2020

Recommendations Directed to the National Archives (NARA)/Office of Government Information Services (OGIS) – U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ)/Office of Information Policy (OIP)

Guidance and Training

Time/Volume Subcommittee Recommendation 2: Archivist requests that OIP collect information in Chief FOIA Officer reports regarding standard operating procedures (SOPs) for processing FOIA requests and the FOIA webpage.

Time/Volume Subcommittee Recommendation 3: Archivist requests that OIP issue guidance requesting agencies provide annual mandatory FOIA training; directs OGIS and requests OIP to study agency FOIA training and content; and requests that OGIS ask Congress to appropriate agency FOIA training costs.

Vision Subcommittee Recommendation 2B: Archivist directs OGIS and requests that OIP help agencies establish briefings for senior leaders during changes in leadership/administrations.

Vision Subcommittee Recommendation 2C: Archivist directs OGIS and requests that OIP examine the FOIA performance measures used in their agency performance plans/reports (not individual performance plans) to encourage agencies to include FOIA in their performance plans. Further, that OGIS submit results of its assessment and any recommendations to Congress and the President.

Recommendations Directed to Federal Departments and Agencies

Disclosure

Time/Volume Subcommittee Recommendation 5: Archivist requests that agencies should ensure that existing non-FOIA statutory provisions for information dissemination are robust; also, that the Archivist support agencies in ensuring that all federal records are created, retained and managed in electronic format by 12/31/2022.  

Process

Time/Volume Subcommittee Recommendation 4: Archivist requests that agencies should identify common categories of frequently requested “first-party” records and seek to establish alternate processes for accessing records that are more efficient than FOIA.

Recommendations Directed to the Chief FOIA Officers Council

Vision Subcommittee Recommendation 1: Archivist requests that the Chief FOIA Officers (CFO) Council create a Committee for cross-agency collaboration and innovation to research and propose a grant program and other revenue resources for FOIA programs; review and promote clear career trajectories for FOIA professionals building on the Government Information Specialist (GIS) job series; and explore and recommend models to align agency resources with transparency commitment. 

Vision Subcommittee Recommendation 2A: Archivist requests that the CFO Council recommend that agency leadership annually issue a memo reminding the workforce of its responsibilities and obligations under FOIA, and encouraging collaboration with FOIA professionals.

Recommendations Directed to Congress

Vision Subcommittee Recommendation 3A: That Congress engage in more regular and robust oversight of FOIA and provide clearer authority and expanded resources to OGIS.

Vision Subcommittee Recommendation 3B: That Congress funds FOIA to ensure that agencies meet legal obligations. 

A Look to the Future

Vision Subcommittee Recommendation 4: The Archivist should continue to take a leadership role in aligning evolving federal data strategy policies with existing FOIA and Federal Records Act statutory frameworks. 

Documents Posted Before the Meeting


Document Posted After the Meeting


Recommendations Passed by the FOIA Advisory Committee on March 5, 2020

Recommendations Directed to the National Archives (NARA)/Office of Government Information Services (OGIS) – U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ)/Office of Information Policy (OIP)

Guidance and Training

Records Management Subcommittee Recommendation 1: Archivist of the United States requests that OIP issue guidance re: including records management-related materials on agency websites and in FOIA handbooks.

Records Management Subcommittee Recommendation 2: Archivist directs NARA and requests OIP to offer Records Management (RM) training to FOIA officers/Public Liaisons. Also include a FOIA module in RM training courses for all federal employees.

Records Management Subcommittee Recommendation 3: Archivist requests that OIP provide best practice guidance on e-discovery tools to help with search.

Technology

Records Management Subcommittee Recommendation 4: Archivist directs NARA to incorporate FOIA/public access into the Federal Records Electronic Modernization Initiative (FERMI). 

Records Management Subcommittee Recommendation 6: Archivist directs NARA and requests OIP to each establish a liaison with the Chief Data Officer Council to ensure FOIA has a voice.

Records Management Subcommittee Recommendation 7: Archivist/NARA works w/ government and industry in promoting research into using artificial intelligence to improve FOIA search and segregation.

Records Management Subcommittee Recommendation 8: Archivist requests that OGIS/OIP together encourage agencies to give access to FOIA-released records in central repository/ies and in standardized ways in addition to on agency websites.

Records Management Subcommittee Recommendation 9: Archivist requests OGIS/OIP together encourage agencies to release FOIA documents in both human-readable and machine-actionable formats to the extent feasible.

Recommendations Directed to Federal Departments and Agencies

Disclosure

Time/Volume Subcommittee Recommendation 6: Archivist requests that agencies provide information on their websites to facilitate FOIA request filing (explanation of process, expected simple and complex wait times, contact info.)

Process

Time/Volume Subcommittee Recommendation 1: Archivist requests that agencies conduct a comprehensive review of their technology and staffing needs to identify resources needed to respond to current FOIA needs and anticipated FOIA demands. Apply results to agency strategic plans. Passed as Best Practice.

Recommendation Directed to the Council of the Inspectors General on Integrity and Efficiency (CIGIE)

Records Management Subcommittee Recommendation 5: Archivist asks the Chair of the CIGIE that it consider a cross-cutting priority area of how agencies are doing in providing FOIA access to agency records in electronic/digital form.

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