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Project on Government Oversight

POGO's FOIA Request to OPM Regarding National Security Sensitive Positions

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July 1, 2013 | By: Angela Canterbury

July 1, 2013

U.S. Office of Personnel Management
FOIA Requester Service Center
Room 5415
1900 E Street NW
Washington DC 20415-7900

RE: Freedom of Information Act Request

Dear Trina Porter or other FOIA staff,

I am making this request under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. Section 552.  Please provide records that are maintained by the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) or for OPM by a government contractor in any format, including an electronic format, which is preferred, if available.  Please provide all reports submitted by OPM to the National Security Agency from 1993 to present as mandated by Executive Order 10450 Section 14, which states: "the Office of Personnel Management, with the continuing advice and collaboration of representatives of such departments and agencies as the National Security Council may designate, shall make a continuing study of the manner in which this order is being implemented" and "report to the National Security Council, at least semiannually, on the results of such study."

Section 14 requires OPM to maintain a continuing report on the implementation of E.O. 10450 and to issue semi-annual reports to the National Security Council. POGO expects these reports to include information on the use of security sensitive designations and determinations. We believe this is critical information in the public interest.

Founded in 1981, the Project On Government Oversight (POGO) is a nonpartisan independent watchdog that champions good government reforms. POGO's investigations into corruption, misconduct, and conflicts of interest achieve a more effective, accountable, open, and ethical federal government.  The records requested will be used for one or more of the following activities: publication by email and on POGO websites; publication on POGO's blog which receives nearly 100,000 views per month, publication in reports and newsletters issued by POGO; publication in the newsletters of affiliated nonprofit organizations; efforts to educate Congress, the Executive Branch, and other policymakers; or in conjunction with the news media.

As such, I request a waiver of all costs associated with fullfilling this submission pursuant to 5 U.S.C. Section 552(a)(4)(A)(iii) and 5 C.F.R. Section 294.109(f). Disclosure of the requested records will contribute significantly to public's understanding of the operations or activities of the government and would not be primarily in the commercial interest of POGO.

We urge you to apply the government's standard of a presumption of openness. However, if this request is denied in full or in part, please cite each exemption pursuant to 5 U.S.C. Section 552(b) that justifies each denial. If an exemption applies, however, please consider exercising the agency's discretionary release powers to disclose the records. Additionally, please release all reasonably segrgable portions of the records that would not cause specific harm to an interest protected by an exemption under FOIA.

I look forward to your response. Please contact me at 202-347-1122 or acanterbury@pogo.org if this request requires further clarification. Thank you for your prompt attention to this matter.

Sincerely,

Angela Canterbury
Director of Public Policy
Project On Government Oversight (POGO)

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OPM's Response to POGO's FOIA Request on National Security Sensitive Positions, September 10, 2013.

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