Freedom of Information Act: Noncompliance with Affirmative Disclosure Provisions : Report to the Chairman, Subcommittee on Government Information, Justice, and Agriculture, Committee on Government Operations, House of Representatives
In response to a congressional request, GAO evaluated federal agencies' compliance with the affirmative disclosure provisions of the Freedom of Information Act, which require that federal agencies make available certain information on their organizations, operations, and regulations. GAO found that: (1) in 13 instances, agencies did not publish or keep current information on their central and field organizations; (2) in 6 instances, their published statements on where the public could obtain information were out of date; and (3) one agency did not publish procedural information on its system of hearings and appeals. GAO also found that: (1) one organization did not index final opinions for cases that it did not consider as precedent, although it did index the final opinions it considered as precedent; (2) in 5 instances, agencies made required materials available at locations other than those specified in the Federal Register; (3) one organization did not have all of its required materials available in its designated reading facility; (4) one organization's published rule on the availability of required material and indexes did not identify the locations where the indexes and materials were available to the public; (5) in 10 instances, agencies did not keep complete indexes of required materials or update them at least quarterly, as the statute required; and (6) two organizations did not publish their indexes or their required statements in the Federal Register to advise that publication of their indexes was considered unnecessary and impracticable, although they did maintain unpublished indexes.
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20 instances 25 organizations administrative error affirmative disclosure provisions Agricultural Stabilization ASCS Attorney General’s available for public BATF Bureau of Alcohol central and field Compliance With FOIA Conservation Service corrective action Crop Insurance Corporation decisions Department of Agriculture Department of Housing Department of Justice descriptions of central documents Drug Enforcement Administration Employment Standards Administration Fair Housing FCIC Federal Crop Insurance Federal Register FHEO field organization field structure final opinions FOIA Subsection a)(2 Government Manual Hearings and Appeals Housing and Equal Housing and Urban inspection and copying instances of noncompliance Justice Management Division Material and Indexes Materials Available Minerals Management Service NHTSA NOAA noncompliance observed nonprecedential obtain information Office of Fair organizational description precedential procedures public inspection public reference facility Publish Information published location regulations Requirements to Publish Social Security Administration Stabilization and Conservation statement subpart tion Tobacco and Firearms updated its index Urban Development Veterans Administration