FOIA: Freedom of Information Act
The Freedom of Information Act (5 USC 552) was enacted in 1966. FOIA provides that any person has a right to obtain access to federal agency records, except to the extent that such records (or portions of them) are protected from public disclosure by one of nine FOIA exemptions or by one of three special law enforcement record exclusions. This right is enforceable in court.
The Federal FOIA does not provide access to records held by U.S. state or local government agencies or by businesses or individuals. States have their own statutes governing public access to state and local records, and they should be consulted for further information.
Filing a FOIA Request
Before submitting FOIA requests, individuals should ensure that the information they seek is not already in the public domain. Offices maintaining information in the public domain are listed in NOAA’s FOIA Reading Room. If the information is not in the public domain, please follow the suggestions listed below to file a new request:
|FILING BY MAIL|
|Mark the outside of the envelope, “Freedom of Information Request” and mail to the address listed below.
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
|CONTACT NOAA FOIA STAFF BY PHONE / FAX / EMAIL|
Fax : 301-713-4040
|FILING AN APPEAL|
|You have the right to appeal this [denial or partial denial] of the FOIA request. Your appeal must be received within 30 calendar days of the date of initial denial letter by the Assistant General Counsel for Administration. Address your appeal to the following office:
Assistant General Counsel for Administration (Office)
Room 5898-C U.S.
Department of Commerce 14th and Constitution Avenue, N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20230