FIA-19-0019 - In the Matter of Joseph Schmidt

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On July 18, 2019, the Office of Hearings and Appeals (OHA) denied a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) Appeal filed by Joseph Schmidt from a determination issued by the Department of Energy’s National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA). In the Appeal, the Appellant challenged NNSA’s use of a Glomar response to neither confirm nor deny the existence of records responsive to the Appellant’s request. After a review, OHA determined that NNSA properly issued a Glomar response because any responsive records, if they exist, could be withheld under Exemption 6 of the FOIA. Moreover, the confirmation that any such records exist would itself reveal information protected by the same FOIA exemption. Accordingly, OHA denied the Appeal. OHA Case No. FIA-19-0019