The Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) Advisory Committee has come full circle on several of its 2018 recommendations, including that the Chief FOIA Officers (CFO) Council study FOIA technology across agencies. The co-chairmen of the CFO Council Technology Subcommittee—Eric Stein of the State Department and Michael Sarich of the Veterans Health Administration—will report back to the FOIA Advisory Committee at its next meeting on September 5, 2019, in the William G. McGowan Theater at the National Archives in Washington, DC. The meeting is from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Since the Council’s Technology Subcommittee formed in September 2018, FOIA professionals from 11 departments and agencies have assessed the FOIA IT landscape and are identifying best practices and recommendations for agencies in accordance with the FOIA Advisory Committee’s recommendation.
Also on the agenda for the FOIA Advisory Committee are updates from the Committee’s three subcommittees—Records Management, Time/Volume, and Vision—and an update on previous Committee recommendations from the 2016-2018 term and the 2014-2016 term. A public comment period concludes the meeting.
If you are interested in attending the September 5, 2019, meeting, please register online. You will go through security screening when you enter the building. For those outside the DC area, the meeting will be live-streamed on the National Archives YouTube channel.
The meeting is the fifth of the 2018-2020 term of the FOIA Advisory Committee, which is tasked with studying FOIA across the government, soliciting public comments, and recommending improvements to the Archivist of the United States. The National Archives established the Committee in 2014 and its members, appointed by the Archivist, come from both inside and outside the government. Alina M. Semo, Director of the Office of Government Information Services (OGIS), chairs to the Committee, and National Archives staff manages its work.
Congress created the CFO Council in the FOIA Improvement Act of 2016. The directors of OGIS and the Department of Justice’s Office of Information Policy co-chair the Council, which must meet publicly at last once a year in accordance with FOIA. The Council met on August 5, 2019. If you missed it, you can watch here.