News release: “[On March 15, 2010] Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) introduced bipartisan legislation to make further improvements to the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), the nations premier open government law. Leahy is a longtime leader on FOIA issues, and has led efforts to make the federal government more open and transparent to the people it represents. This week marks the sixth annual Sunshine Week, a national observance of the importance of an open and transparent government. Leahy partnered with Senator John Cornyn (R-Texas) to author the Faster FOIA Act, which will establish an advisory panel to examine agency backlogs in processing FOIA requests. Under the legislation, the panel, named the Commission on Freedom of Information Act Processing Delays, will be required to provide to Congress recommendations for legislative and administrative action to enhance agency responses to FOIA requests. The panel will be required to identify methods to reduce delays in the processing of FOIA requests, and will be charged with examining whether the system for charging fees and granting fee waivers under FOIA should be reformed in order to reduce delays in processing fee requests.”
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