You Have The Right To Know . . . Eventually
The Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) allows citizens to request information from the government. The government doesn’t necessarily have to provide the information (there are a dozen categories of exemptions to FOIA) but it does have to respond to the request within 20 days. How close does the government get to meeting this requirement?
On Jan. 4, The New York Times received a final response from the Defense Department to a FOIA request made on June 1, 1997. The department sent it by Federal Express, Priority Overnight.
The courts have ruled that government agencies must respond to FOIA requests in 20 days. But The Times’s case was hardly a record; some requests are approaching 20 years old.
This is the kind of thing that destroys faith in government. I’m not sure what is more appalling, the fact that they took 14 years to respond or that they then wasted taxpayer money by sending the delayed response by Federal Express.Click here for reuse options!
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