New Report: Obama Administration Makes Transparency Gains; Challenges Remain

by Sabrina I. Pacifici on December 15, 2011

News release: “Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) and OpenTheGovernment.org released a joint report, Measuring Transparency Under the FOIA: The Real Story Behind the Numbers, analyzing the government’s Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) data for 2010 and how it compares to the previous administration’s data…The results paint a very mixed picture on the FOIA front, with agencies generally processing more requests more quickly, but also increasing their reliance on the FOIA’s nine exemptions to withhold more information from the public. Our analysis revealed an even more alarming truth: the government’s FOIA data is flawed, making it impossible to assess key areas of progress and casting doubt on its overall reliability. As a result, what started as a statistical report on agencies’ handling of FOIA requests ended as an expose of the problems with the data and tools the government has developed to measure its progress in implementing the FOIA.”

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