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FIA-12-0004 - In the Matter of California-Arizona-Nevada District Organization Contract Compliance

The Office of Hearings and Appeals issued one Decision relating to two  appeals filed by California-Arizona-Nevada District Organization Contract Compliance (CANDO) from two determination letters issued by the Loan Guarantee Program Office (LGPO) of the Department of Energy (DOE) under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA).  CANDO filed requests for information in which it sought copies of specified documents related to loan guarantee contracts for the Gila Bend (Case No. FIA-12-0004) and Agua Caliente (Case No.FIA-12-0005) Solar Energy Projects.  In determination letters issued on October 31, and November 8, 2012, LGPO withheld from CANDO portions of the responsive Agua Caliente (FIA-12-0005) and Gila Bend (FIA-12-0004) documents on the basis of Exemption 4 of the FOIA.  In its appeals, CANDO challenged the applicability of Exemption 4 to the withholding of names and other identifying information about contractors and sub-contractors listed in the documents.  With respect to the Gila Bend documents, we determined that LGPO had failed to sufficiently notify the requester that it had withheld such contractor and sub-contractor information, and failed to sufficiently justify its application of Exemption 4 to that information.  With respect to the Agua Caliente documents, on the other hand, we found that no such information was contained in those documents, and therefore LGPO had not withheld such information from those documents.  Consequently, we remanded the matter to LGPO for a new determination regarding the contractor and sub-contract information previously withheld from the Gila Bend documents.   Accordingly, CANDO's Appeal was granted in part and denied in part.