A. Point of Contact


Emma Gonzalez-Joy

Room 736

624 Ninth Street, N.W.

Washington, D.C. 20425

Phone: (202) 376-7796

Fax: (202) 376-8315


B. Electronic Address for Report


The FY 2004 FOIA Report for the U.S.C.C.R. will be available at the Commission’s home page at: www.usccr.gov


C. Paper Copies of Report:


Paper copies can be requested from the person/address listed above.




A. USCCR policy:


Make the fullest possible disclosure of information and records to any requester, without unnecessary expenses or delay.


B. Requirements:


There are four basic agency requirements for making a FOIA request:

1.    Request must be in writing (mailed correspondence, fax) and include the requester’s mailing address.

2.       The envelope and letter content must identify the request as a FOIA request.

3.       The request must provide enough detail to allow identification of the requested records; and

4.       The request must include agreement to pay fees chargeable under USCCR’s fee schedule.


C. Agency components:


Request for records of the agency should be sent to USCCR FOIA Officer, Room 736, 624 Ninth Street, N.W. Washington D.C. 20425.  Phone: 202-376-7796, Fax: 202-376-8315.


D. USCCR response-time ranges:


The agency generally manages to respond to FOIA requests within three to four weeks for records that can be found at the agency.  Response times over 20 working days are generally the result of the need to track and retrieve documents from off-site storage at the Federal Records Center, or need to consult among agency components.


E. Reason why some requests are not granted:


Request for records may not be granted if the documents have been transferred to the ownership of the National Archives and Records Administration; if the requested records contain pre-decisional information; that if released would cause harm to USCCR decision-making processes; for portions of records that contain personal and/or proprietary information; for records containing information complied for law enforcement purposes; or if the requester asked for information specifically prohibited from disclosure by other statutes.




A. Agency-specific terms and acronyms:


There are no agency-specific terms or acronyms used in this report.


B. Basic terms, expressed in common terminology.

1.    FOIA/PA request. Freedom of Information Act/Privacy Act request.  A FOIA request is generally a request for access to records concerning a third party, an organization, or a particular topic of interest.  A Privacy Act request is a request for records concerning oneself; such requests are also treated as FOIA requests. (All requests for access to records, regardless of which law is cited by the requester, are included in this report).

2.    Initial Request-a request to a federal agency for access to records under the Freedom of Information Act.

3.    Appeal-a request to a federal agency asking that it review at a higher administrative level a full denial or partial denial of access to records under the Freedom of Information Act, or any other FOIA determination such as a matter pertaining to fees.

4.    Processed Request or Appeal-a request for which an agency has taken a final action on the request or the appeal in all respects.

5.       Multi-track processing-a system in which simple requests requiring relatively minimal review are placed in one processing track and more voluminous and complex requests are placed in one or more tracks.  Requests in each track are processed on a first-in/first out basis.  A requester who has an urgent need for records may request expedited processing (see below).

6.       Expedited processing-an agency will process a FOIA request on an expedited basis when a requester has shown an exceptional need or urgency for the records which warrants prioritization of his/her request over other requests that were made earlier.

7.       Simple request-a FOIA request that an agency using multi-track processing places in its fastest (nonexpedited) track based on the volume and/or simplicity of records requested.

8.       Complex request-a FOIA request that an agency using multi-track processing places in a slower track based on the volume and/or complexity or records requested.

9.       Grant-an agency decision to disclose all records in full in response to a FOIA request.

10.  Partial grant-an agency decision to disclose a record in part in response to a FOIA request, deleting information determined to be exempt under one or more of the FOIA’s exemptions, or for more procedural reasons (such as because no record is located in response to a FOIA request).

11.    Denial-an agency decision not to release any part of a record or records in response to a FOIA request because all the information in the requested records is determined by the agency to be exempt under one or more of the FOIA’s exemptions, or for some procedural reason (such as because no record is located in response to a FOIA request).

12.    Time Iimits -the time period in the Freedom of Information Act for an agency to respond to a FOIA request (ordinarily 20 working days from proper receipt of a “perfected” FOIA request).

13.    “Perfected” request-a FOIA request for records which adequately describes the records sought, which has been received by the FOIA office of the agency or agency component in possession of the records, and for which there is no remaining question about the payment of applicable fees.

14.    Exemption 3 statute- a separate federal statute prohibiting the disclosure of a certain type of information and authorizing its withholding under FOIA subsection (b)(3).

15.    Median number-the middle, not average, number.  For example, of 3, 7 and 14, the median number is 7.

16.    Average number-the number obtained by dividing the sum of a group of numbers by the quantity of numbers in the group.




A. Exemption 3 statutes relied on by the USCCR during the current fiscal year:


During Fiscal Year 2004 the USCCR did not use any exemption 3 statute.




A. Number of initial requests:

1.      Number of requests pending as of end of preceding fiscal year: 0

2.      Number of requests received during current fiscal year: 54

3.      Number of requests processed during current fiscal year: 54

4.      Number of requests pending as of end of current fiscal year: 0


B. Disposition of initial requests:

1.      Number of total grants (records released in full): 15

2.      Number of partial grants (records released in part): 1

3.      Number of denials (total withholding of records): 0

4.      Number of times each FOIA exemption was used:

a.    Exemption 1: 0

b.    Exemption 2: 0

c.    Exemption 3: 0

d.    Exemption 4: 0

e.    Exemption 5: 0

f.     Exemption 6: 0

g.    Exemption 7(A): 0

h.    Exemption 7(B): 0

i.     Exemption 7(C ): 0

j.     Exemption 7 (D): 0

k.    Exemption 7 (F): 0

l.     Exemption 8: 0

m.   Exemption 9: 0

5.      Other reasons for nondisclosure (total): 38

a.    No records: 25

b.    Referrals: 8

c.    Request withdrawn: 1

d.    Fee-related reason: 0

e.    Records not reasonably described: 1

f.     Not a proper FOIA request for some other reason: 3

g.    Not an agency record: 0

h.    Duplicate request: 0

i.     Other (specify): 0




A. Number of appeals:

1.       Number of appeals received during fiscal year: 0

2.       Number of appeals processed during fiscal year: 0


B. Disposition of appeals

1.       Number completely upheld: 0

2.       Number partially reversed: 0

3.       Number completely reversed: 0

4.       Number of times each FOIA exemption used (counting each exemption once per appeal): 0

a.       Exemption 1: 0

b.       Exemption 2: 0

c.       Exemption 3: 0

d.       Exemption 4: 0

e.       Exemption 5: 0

f.         Exemption 6: 0

g.       Exemption 7(A): 0

h.       Exemption 7(B): 0

i.         Exemption 7(C): 0

j.         Exemption 7(D): 0

k.       Exemption 7(E): 0

l.         Exemption 7(F): 0

m.     Exemption 8: 0

n.       Exemption 9: 0

5.       Other reasons for nondisclosure: 0

a.       No records: 0

b.       Referrals: 0

c.       Request withdrawn: 0

d.       Fee-related reason: 0

e.       Records not reasonably described: 0

f.         Not a proper FOIA request for some other reason: 0

g.       Not an agency record: 0

h.       Duplicate request: 0

i.         Other (specify): 0




A. Median processing time for requests processed during the year:

NOTE: USCCR uses a single first-in, first-out method of processing requests.  The agency did not receive requests for expedited access during fiscal year 2004.

1.   Number of requests (specify for any and all tracks used). 54

2.   Median number of days to process: 15

3.   Complex requests (specify for any and all tracks used).

a.    Number of requests processed: 0

b.        Median number of days to process: 0


B. Status of pending requests:

1.       Number of requests pending as of end of current fiscal year: 0

2.       Median number of days that such requests were pending as of that date: 0



I did not receive any requests for expedited processing.




A. Staffing levels:

1.       Number of full-time FOIA personnel: None

2.       Number of personnel with part-time or occasional FOIA duties: 1/5

3.       Total number of personnel (in work years): 1/5


B. Total costs (including staff and all resources)

1.       FOIA processing (including appeals): $25,000.

2.       Litigation-related activities (estimated): One case during FY 2004




A. Total amount of fees collected by the agency for processing requests: 0


B. Percentage of total costs: n/a




USCCR FOIA regulations are published at 45 C.F.R. Part 704, and are available electronically at: http://www.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/cfr-table-search.html.