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FOIA Facts: The Lighter Side of FOIA

By Scott A. Hodes, Published on April 24, 2005
[Editor's Note – Scott Hodes is "away."  This month’s FOIA column is being channeled through a well known cable talk show host, from Scott, to you. Enjoy..."and away we go."]

It seems the Department of Justice has given up on its idea to impose six-digit search fees on the request made by People for the American Way Foundation seeking information on the number of times since September 11, 2001 that secret evidence has been used in criminal proceedings. The DOJ is now planning to search for the records without payment, but the scope of what will be provided remains in question. The parties were scheduled to be back in Court on April 21, 2005.

Isn’t Sabrina Pacifici and her blog, beSpacific, just great?

Senator John Corwyn’s (R-TX) idea to create a commission to study and issue advice on the FOIA has made it through committee in the Senate. Wonder what Washington D.C. FOIA powers want to be on this sexy committee?

For my money, the most musically talented Jackson has always been Joe.

Meanwhile, Sen. Corwyn’s FOIA amendments seem to be going nowhere fast in either houses of Congress. Maybe if the FOIA was in need of life-support, the government would act quicker.

Come Sunday night, I’m watching Arrested Development on Fox. On Tuesdays, its NBC’s Scrubs and the Office.

They say you should never watch sausage being made. So, do FOIA requesters really want a database to continually track the states of their FOIA requests as they meander through the bureaucracy, as pending legislation provides?

The music of the Bangles really holds up. Monday is still manic, even 20 years later. And Susannah Hoff was never tough on the eyes.

The FOIA has really shined a lot of light on government in the past year. Without it, we’d provably never have seen the torture memos.

I miss hair bands [Editor's note...so do I...sigh]

Writing about FOIA is tough. Writing about baseball is a lot easier. And isn’t it great our nation's capital now has a team. Go Nats!

Nearly four million FOIA requests were made last year. Puts the number of my marriages in perspective.

The non-profit group Fund for Constitutional Government reports that the federal government classified a record 15.6 million documents in 2004. I wonder what’s the big secret?

It’s been a pleasure. Scott will be back next month, but you can always find him at www.infoprivacylaw.com.