Press release: "Sens. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and John Cornyn (R-Texas) Tuesday introduced bipartisan, revised legislation to increase government transparency and provide the first major reforms to the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) in more than a decade. The Senate passed an earlier version of the Leahy-Cornyn bill -- the Openness Promotes Effectiveness in our National (OPEN) Government Act -- and the House has passed a counterpart measure, but efforts to reconcile the two bills were stymied over House concerns about “pay-go” issues...The OPEN Government Act would:
- Restore meaningful deadlines for agency action under FOIA;
- Impose real consequences on federal agencies for missing FOIA’s 20-day statutory deadline;
- Clarify that FOIA applies to government records held by outside private contractors;
- Establish a FOIA hotline service for all federal agencies;
- and Create a FOIA Ombudsman to provide FOIA requestors and federal agencies with a meaningful alternative to costly litigation.
- Related postings on FOIA