As we begin a new year and say “hello” to 2023, we have news to share: OGIS is excited to announce our new public comments form. This new tool allows the public to submit their comments to the FOIA Advisory Committee, the Chief FOIA Officers Council, and the OGIS Annual Meeting while streamlining our internal process to create efficiencies.
We value hearing from stakeholders in the federal FOIA landscape and written public comments are an important way for us—and the Committee and Council—to better understand the experiences of FOIA requesters. One of our strategic goals at the National Archives and Records Administration is “Connect with Customers,” and as the FOIA Ombudsman, we do that every day by listening to the FOIA process.
Our new written public comments form builds efficiencies into the process by creating a streamlined route for the Chief FOIA Officers Council to receive comments for posting on the Council’s new web page, managed by the Department of Justice’s Office of Information Policy (OIP). The move from two separate Council web pages managed by OGIS and OIP, respectively, to a single site on FOIA.gov necessitated more efficient processes for both offices.
The new form also will ensure that all comments comply with Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act. All comments will be received in text format, allowing them to be posted in a format accessible to people with disabilities. Comments to the FOIA Advisory Committee and the OGIS Annual Meeting that comply with OGIS’s public comments policy will be posted on OGIS’s website in Hypertext Markup Language (HTML).
In addition to the new form, we have updated our public comments policy to reflect the new submission process.