[Federal Register Volume 82, Number 120 (Friday, June 23, 2017)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 28549-28550]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2017-13056]

Rules and Regulations
                                                Federal Register

This section of the FEDERAL REGISTER contains regulatory documents 
having general applicability and legal effect, most of which are keyed 
to and codified in the Code of Federal Regulations, which is published 
under 50 titles pursuant to 44 U.S.C. 1510.

The Code of Federal Regulations is sold by the Superintendent of Documents. 


Federal Register / Vol. 82, No. 120 / Friday, June 23, 2017 / Rules 
and Regulations

[[Page 28549]]


5 CFR Part 9301

RIN 3460-AA04

Freedom of Information Act and Privacy Act Procedures

AGENCY: Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction.

ACTION: Final rule.


SUMMARY: The Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction 
(SIGAR) published an interim final rule enacting changes to its Freedom 
of Information Act regulation to comply with the FOIA Improvement Act 
of 2016 on January 4th, 2017. SIGAR is now adopting those amendments as 
final with changes.

DATES:  This final rule is effective July 24, 2017.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: William Gaertner, Associate General 
Counsel, Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction, 2530 
Crystal Drive, Arlington, VA 22202, (703) 545-5994.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: On January 28, 2008, the President signed 
into law the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2008 
(Pub. L. 110-181), which created SIGAR to conduct independent and 
objective audits, investigations and analysis to promote economy and 
efficiency, and to detect and deter waste, fraud, and abuse in the 
reconstruction of Afghanistan. The Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), 
as amended, provides for access by the public to records of executive 
branch agencies, subject to certain restrictions and exemptions. In 
order to establish procedures to facilitate public interaction with 
SIGAR, the agency published 5 CFR part 9301 setting forth SIGAR's 
regulations governing the access provisions of those statutes and 
Executive Order 12958. On June 30, 2016 the President signed into law 
the FOIA Improvement Act of 2016 (Pub. L. 114-185). SIGAR published an 
interim final rule amending its FOIA regulations based on the changes 
made in the FOIA Improvements Act of 2016 on January 4th, 2017.
    SIGAR received comments on its interim final rule from two 
government agencies. SIGAR reviewed these comments and is making 
changes to the interim final rule based on those comments.

II. The Final Rule

    This final rule amends portions of SIGAR's existing regulation 
implementing provisions of the FOIA (5 U.S.C. 552). The provisions of 
this amendment shall apply to all components of SIGAR. The FOIA 
provides for the disclosure of agency records and information to the 
public, unless that information is exempted under delineated statutory 
exemptions under the FOIA. The procedures established here are intended 
to ensure that SIGAR fully satisfies its responsibility to the public 
to disclose agency information, but continues to safeguard sensitive 
information properly.

Procedural Requirements

    This Final Rule amends SIGAR's regulations implementing the FOIA to 
facilitate the interaction of the public with SIGAR. SIGAR's policy of 
disclosure follows the Presidential Memorandum of January 21, 2009, 
``Transparency and Open Government,'' 74 FR 4685, and the Attorney 
General's March 19, 2009 FOIA policy guidance, advising Federal 
agencies to apply a presumption of disclosure in FOIA decision making. 
This Final Rule incorporates portions the FOIA Improvement Act of 2016, 
signed into law by the President on June 30, 2016. This amendment 
maintains SIGAR's compliance with the FOIA and those amendments to the 
FOIA adopted in the FOIA Improvement Act of 2016.
    Finally, notice of proposed rulemaking is not required, because the 
provisions of the Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. Chapter 6) do 
not apply. It has been determined that this rulemaking is not a 
significant regulatory action for the purposes of Executive Order 
12866. Accordingly, a regulatory impact analysis is not required.

    Dated: June 16, 2017.
John F. Sopko,
Inspector General.

List of Subjects in 5 CFR Part 9301

    Administrative practice and procedure, Freedom of information.

Authority and Issuance

    Accordingly, as stated in the preamble, SIGAR is adopting the 
interim rule published January 4, 2017, at 82 FR 711, as final with the 
following changes:


1. The authority citation for part 9301 continues to read as follows:

    Authority: 5 U.S.C. 552; Pub. L. 110-175, 121 Stat. 2524 (2007); 
5 U.S.C. 301 and 552; Exec. Order 12600, 52 FR 23781, 3 CFR, 1987 
Comp., p. 235; Exec. Order No. 13392, 70 FR 75373-75377, 3 CFR, 2006 
Comp., pp. 216-200.

2. In Sec.  9301.6, paragraphs (c)(1)(ii) and (d)(3) are revised to 
read as follows:

Sec.  9301.6  Requesting records.

* * * * *
    (c) * * *
    (1) * * *
    (ii) Adverse determinations. If the FOIA Officer denies the 
request, in full or part, or applies exemptions to withhold requested 
documents, the FOIA Officer shall provide the requester written notice 
of the adverse determination together with the approximate number of 
pages of information withheld and the exemption under which the 
information was withheld. SIGAR will indicate, if technically feasible, 
the amount of information deleted and the exemption under which the 
deletion is made at the place in the record where the deletion was 
made. SIGAR will also indicate the exemption under which a deletion is 
made on the released portion of the record, unless including that 
indication would harm an interest protected by the exemptions. The 
notice shall also describe the procedure for filing an appeal. SIGAR 
will further notify the requester of their right to seek assistance 
from SIGAR's FOIA Public Liaison or dispute resolution services from 
the FOIA Public Liaison or the Office of Government Information 
Services in the case of an adverse determination.
* * * * *
    (d) * * *

[[Page 28550]]

    (3) Dispute Resolution. A response to an appeal will advise the 
requester that the 2007 FOIA amendments created the Office of 
Government Information Services (OGIS) to offer dispute resolution 
services to resolve disputes between FOIA requesters and Federal 
agencies as a nonexclusive alternative to litigation. Dispute 
resolution is a voluntary process. A requester may contact OGIS in any 
of the following ways: Office of Government Information Services, 
National Archives and Records Administration, 8601 Adelphi Road, 
College Park, MD 20740; Email: [email protected]; Telephone: 202-741-5770; 
Facsimile: 202-741-5769; Toll-free: 1-877-684-6448.

3. In Sec.  9301.8, paragraph (f)(3) is revised to read as follows:

Sec.  9301.8  Fees in general.

* * * * *
    (f) * * *
    (3) SIGAR determines that unusual circumstances apply to the 
processing of a request, provides timely notice to the requester, and 
delay is excused for an additional ten days, but SIGAR still fails to 
respond within the timeframe established by the additional delay. This 
provision applies only to search fees or duplication fees for 
educational institution, non-commercial scientific institution, or 
representative of the news media requesters. However, the following 
exceptions shall apply:
    (i) Notwithstanding Sec.  9301.8(f)(3), if SIGAR determines that 
unusual circumstances apply and that more than 5000 pages are necessary 
to respond to the request, SIGAR may continue to charge search fees, or 
duplication fees for requesters in preferred status, for as long as 
necessary, after timely written notice has been made to the requester 
and SIGAR has discussed with the requester how the requester could 
effectively limit the scope of the request via written mail, electronic 
mail, or telephone, or made three good-faith attempts to do so.

[FR Doc. 2017-13056 Filed 6-22-17; 8:45 am]