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FOIA Cases

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June 19, 2013
FIA-13-0031 - In the Matter of Avery R. Webster

On June 19, 2013, the Office of Hearings and Appeals (OHA) issued a decision granting in part and denying in part an appeal (Appeal) from a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) determination issued by the Office of Information Resources (OIR).  The Appellant appealed the OIR’s decision to withhold portions of released documents pursuant to Exemption 5 and contested the adequacy of its search.  The OIR stated that portions of the documents were withheld pursuant to the deliberative process privilege of Exemption 5.

June 18, 2013
FIA-13-0030 - In the Matter of Hanford Atomic Metals Trades Council

On June 18, 2013, the Office of Hearings and Appeals (OHA) issued a decision remanding an appeal (Appeal) from a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) determination issued by the Department of Energy’s Richland Operations Office (ROO). The Appellant, Hanford Atomic Metals Trade Council, contested the ROO’s invocation of Exemption 5 to the redactions it made in the released documents.

June 12, 2013
FIA-13-0029 - In the Matter of Post Register

On June 12, 2013, the Office of Hearings and Appeals (OHA) issued a decision remanding an appeal (Appeal) from a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) determination issued by the Department of Energy’s Idaho Operations Office (IOO). The Appellant, Post Register, contested the IOO’s adequacy of search for responsive documents and determination that most of the requested documents were not agency records.  The OHA concluded that the IOO did not demonstrate that the requested records – pertaining to “vulnerable non-safety measures” – were contractor-owned.

June 10, 2013
FIA-13-0033 - In the Matter of the Washington Examiner

On June 10, 2013 the Office of Hearings and Appeals (OHA) issued a decision denying an appeal (Appeal) from a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) determination issued by the Department of Energy’s Office of Information Resources (OIR) and the Chief Financial Officer (CF), where the OIR and CF withheld the names of employees in official time sheets pursuant to Exemption 6. The Appellant, Washington Examiner, contested the application of Exemption 6 to the withheld information, claiming that there was no privacy interest in the names and that there is a public interest in the information.

June 10, 2013
FIA-13-0027 - In the Matter of Torres Consulting & Law Group, LLC

On June 10, 2013, the Department of Energy’s (DOE) Office of Hearings and Appeals (OHA) granted in part a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) Appeal filed by Torres Consulting & Law Group, LLC, (Appellant) of a determination issued by the Loan Guarantee Program Office (LGPO).  In its request, the Appellant asked for information relating to the Abengoa Mohave construction project.  LGPO released documents to the Appellant but withheld information under Exemptions 4 and 6 of the FOIA.  The Appellant claimed that LGPO improperly withheld the wage rates under Exemption 4.  We disagreed stati

May 24, 2013
FIA-13-0006 - In the Matter of Wall Street Journal

On May 24, 2013, the Office of Hearings and Appeals (OHA) issued a decision denying an appeal (Appeal) from a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) determination issued by the Department of Energy’s (DOE) Office of Information Resources (OIR). The Wall Street Journal, the Appellant, sought categories of records concerning IP addresses of computers that have accessed web pages administered by the DOE’s Energy Information Administration (EIA) or on which data on energy resources are first made public by the EIA.

May 23, 2013
FIA-13-0028 - In the Matter of WyoFile

On May 23, 2013, the Office of Hearings and Appeals (OHA) issued a decision denying an appeal (Appeal) from a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) determination issued by the National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL).  The Appellant appealed the NETL’s decision to apply Exemption 7(a) to withhold the requested documents regarding stimulus grants that were awarded to the North American Power Group.  OHA determined that the NETL sufficiently invoked exemption 7(a) as the withheld information pertained to ongoing law enforcement investigations involving the Inspector General’s Office and the

May 20, 2013
FIA-13-0026 - In the Matter of Hanford Challenge

On May 20, 2013, the Office of Hearings and Appeals (OHA) issued a decision denying an appeal (Appeal) from a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) determination issued by the Department of Energy’s Richland Operations Office (ROO). The Appellant, the Hanford Challenge, contested the ROO’s denial of a fee waiver in processing its FOIA request.

May 9, 2013
FIA-13-0024 - In the Matter of Laborers’ International Union of North America, Pacific Southwest Region

On May 9, 2013, the Office of Hearings and Appeals (OHA) issued a decision remanding an appeal (Appeal) from a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) determination issued by the Loan Guarantee Program Office (LGPO).  The Appellant appealed LGPO’s decision to withhold certain portions of the payroll documents pursuant to Exemptions 4 and 6.

May 6, 2013
FIA-13-0022 - In the Matter of Jamileh Mogin

On May 6, 2013, the Office of Hearings and Appeals (OHA) issued a decision remanding an appeal (Appeal) from a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) determination issued by the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) Office of General Counsel (NA-GC).  The Appellant appealed the NA-GC’s decision to withhold information from documents responsive to the Appellant’s request under FOIA Exemptions 5, 6, and 7(C), and challenged the adequacy of NA-GC’s search for responsive document.  OHA concluded that NA-GC’s search was adequate, but that its determination did not adequately explain how FO