As the Archivist of the United States announced earlier this week, you can now review and comment on the National Archives and Records Administration’s Open Government Plan 4.0 on Github. The plan covers steps the National Archives intends to take over the next two years to strengthen open government within our agency and across the Federal government.
The plan discusses our continued work leading and supporting the 2016-2018 term of the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) Advisory Committee. As discussed in a fact sheet released by the White House marking the President’s signature of the FOIA Improvement Act of 2016 and in remarks by U. S. Chief Technology Officer Megan Smith and Office of Management and Budget Director Shaun Donovan during the committee’s kick-off meeting, the Committee is charged with looking broadly at the challenges that agency FOIA programs will face in light of an ever-increasing volume of electronic records; the committee also is tasked with charting a course for how FOIA should operate in the future.
NARA’s plan also includes the two commitments we made as part on the ongoing effort to modernize the administration of FOIA in the Third National Open Government Action Plan. One of the commitments is to develop materials that will help students understand the purpose and power of FOIA (learn more about how you can help with this effort here). The second commitment is to work with the Department of Justice’s Office of Information Policy to develop best practices for making agency FOIA webpages more informative and user-friendly.
The National Archives is treating this plan as a living document and will update the plan based on the feedback received. We hope you will check out the plan and take a few moments to share any of your suggestions!