FOIA Advisor

FOIA News: State Department updates on FOIA staffing surge

FOIA News (2015-16)Kevin SchmidtComment

State Department updates on FOIA staffing surge

By Josh Gerstein, Politico, Dec. 14, 2015

Reeling from an onslaught of Freedom of Information Act requests triggered by revelations about Hillary Clinton's email use, the State Department reported Monday that it has made modest progress in efforts to boost the number of staffers processing documents for review.

In a new court filing, State says that as of Dec. 1, it has made offers to 43 people to take part in a surge of 50 personnel Secretary of State John Kerry authorized in September to aid the agency's embattled FOIA operation. The slots are open to existing State staffers as well as some retired personnel and family members who have worked for the agency overseas.

However, as of December 11, only seven people have been added to the ranks of those reviewing material for release under FOIA, the filing says. Three other reviewers are handling Congressional document requests. Four more reviewers are expected to come on board this month, the Justice Department said in the court filing in a FOIA case brought by Vice News reporter Jason Leopold.

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