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FOIA Cases

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November 12, 2015
FIA-15-0060 - In the Matter of R. James Valvo, III

On November 12, 2015, OHA issued a decision denying a FOIA appeal (Appeal) from a determination issued by the DOE’s Office of Information Resources (OIR). In the Appeal, Mr. Valvo (Appellant), challenged an OIR determination to withhold portions of documents relating to certain communications between White House and DOE staff. OIR provided the Appellant with five E-mail chains but withheld portions of the documents pursuant to Exemptions 5 and 6.

November 10, 2015
FIA-15-0058 - In the Matter of Bradley P. Jones

On November 10, 2015, OHA granted in part and denied in part a FOIA and Privacy Act Appeal filed by Bradley P. Jones from a determination issued to him by the DOE Office of the Inspector General (OIG). In the Appeal, the Appellant challenged the use of Exemptions 5, 6, 7(A), 7(C), and 7(D) and the adequacy of the search for responsive documents. OHA found that although the use of the exemptions was appropriate, in some instances, OIG inadvertently redacted words that should not have been withheld. OHA remanded these documents to OIG to make this correction.

October 29, 2015
FIA-15-0054 - In the Matter of Philip Zwiefelhofer

On October 29, 2015, OHA issued a decision denying a FOIA Appeal filed by Philip Zwiefelhofer (Appellant) from a determination issued to him by the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA). In the Appeal, the Appellant challenged the NNSA’s finding that any responsive records in the possession of Los Alamos National Security, LLC, the management and operating contractor for Los Alamos National Laboratory, would not be “agency records” subject to disclosure under the FOIA.

October 23, 2015
FIA-15-0050 - In the Matter of Dan Zegart

On October 23, 2015, OHA issued a decision granting in part an appeal (Appeal) FOIA determination issued by the DOE National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL). In the Appeal, Mr. Dan Zegart (Appellant), challenged two NETL partial determinations in which it withheld portions of documents relating to clean coal and carbon capture technology. NETL provided the Appellant with a number of documents but withheld portions of the documents pursuant to FOIA Exemptions 4, 5, and 6.

October 1, 2015
FIA-15-0053 - In the Matter of Michael Isikoff

On October 1, 2015, OHA denied a FOIA Appeal filed by Michael Isikoff (Appellant) from an interim response issued to him by the DOE’s Office of Information Resources. In the Appeal, the Appellant challenged the denial of his request for expedited processing. In support of his expedited processing request, the Appellant contended that there existed an urgency to inform the public because the subject of his FOIA request related to a potential issue in the presidential election.

September 25, 2015
FIA-15-0051 - In the Matter of Robert H. Leyse

On September 25, 2015, OHA denied in part and remanded in part a FOIA Appeal filed by Robert H. Leyse (Appellant) from a determination issued to him by the DOE’s Idaho Operations Office (IOO). In the Appeal, the Appellant challenged the adequacy of the DOE’s search for responsive documents. OHA found that IOO had conducted a search reasonably calculated to uncover relevant documents. However, OHA also found that the request should have been referred to the Office of Nuclear Energy (NE) and so remanded the request to OIR for referral to NE. 

September 16, 2015
FIA-15-0047 - In the Matter of Julie Reddick

On September 16, 2015, OHA issued a decision denying a FOIA Appeal filed by Julie Reddick (Appellant) from a determination issued to her by the DOE’s Office of Information Resources (OIR). In the Appeal, the Appellant challenged the adequacy of the OIR’s search for the requested document. OHA found, however, that no additional search was necessary because the requested document did not exist. Accordingly, OHA denied the Appeal.

August 31, 2015
FIA-15-0045 - In the Matter of Anthony Rivera

On August 31, 2015, OHA denied a FOIA Appeal filed by Anthony Rivera (Appellant) of a determination issued by the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA).  In the Appeal, the Appellant challenged NNSA’s withholdings of information in responsive documents, under FOIA Exemption 5.  OHA found, however, that NNSA properly withheld the information under the Exemption, and therefore denied the Appeal. 

August 26, 2015
FIA-15-0042 - In the Matter of Raymond W. Stephens, Jr.

On August 26, 2015, OHA issued a decision denying a FOIA Appeal filed by Mr. Raymond W. Stephens, Jr. (Appellant) from a determination issued to him by the DOE’s Oak Ridge Office (ORO). In the Appeal, the Appellant challenged the adequacy of the search for responsive documents. OHA found, however, that the search by ORO was reasonably calculated to uncover responsive documents. OHA further found that the Office of Information Resources (OIR), which initially received the request, properly sent the request to ORO.  Accordingly, OHA denied the Appeal.

August 20, 2015
FIA-15-0046 - In the Matter of Cecil D. Andrus

On August 20, 2015, OHA denied a FOIA Appeal filed by former Idaho Governor Cecil D. Andrus from a determination issued to him by the DOE Office of Information Resources. In the Appeal, the Appellant challenged the use of FOIA Exemption 5 to withhold certain information from released documents. OHA found, however, that the use of Exemption 5 was appropriate.