At its October 25, 2016 meeting, the FOIA Advisory Committee made some important decisions—identifying the issues its members will address during its two-year term. By the end of the meeting, the Committee formed three subcommittees: Search; Efficiencies and Resources; and Proactive Disclosure and Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act.
OGIS Acting Director Nikki Gramian kicked off the discussion by reviewing the difficult FOIA issues committee members identified at the July meeting, including the use of technology; commitment and awareness by leadership of an agency’s obligations under FOIA; encouraging the adoption of best practices; requester frustration with the process; and encouraging proactive disclosure while ensuring compliance with Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act, which requires Federal agencies to make their electronic records accessible to people with disabilities. During their discussion at yesterday’s meeting, members of the committee refined the previously identified issues into topics that they want to address and deliberated about how to effectively tackle the problems. Committee members decided that each of the subcommittees would look at how they might address the problem using best practices, technology, and/or legislative proposals, if applicable.
Committee members also chose leaders for the newly formed subcommittees according to the Committee’s by-laws, which require that a government and a non-government member act as co-chairs:
- Search: Nate Jones (National Security Archive) and Logan Perel (Department of Homeland Security)
- Efficiencies and Resources: Chris Knox (Deloitte Transactions and Business Analytics LLP) and Ginger McCall (Department of Labor)
- Proactive Disclosure and Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act: William Holzerland (Food & Drug Administration’s Center for Devices and Radiological Health) and Margaret Kwoka (University of Denver Sturm College of Law)
You can learn more about the FOIA Advisory Committee members by reviewing the biographies posted on our FOIA Advisory Committee page, and mark your calendars for future meetings and download committee materials by visiting the meetings page. You can also a keep up with the latest FOIA Advisory Committee news by regularly reading this blog and following us on Twitter.