'Extreme' review process adding to FOIA backlog

Thursday - 7/7/2011, 4:38pm EDT

Nate Jones, Freedom of Information Act Coordinator, National Security Archive

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A National Security Archive survey finds agencies are falling short of the Obama administration's order to improve response time for Freedom of Information Act requests.

The required response time is 20 days.

Nate Jones is the Freedom of Information Act Coordinator at the National Security Archive. His group complied a survey of the 10 Oldest FOIA Requests. And he says the backlog isn't going away anytime soon.

In the FOIA request referral process at agencies, requests may have to be processed at several different agencies and go through many layers of review.

"It's not uncommon for documents to get stuck at a desk at one agency or lost in the mail," Jones said.

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