Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Are we confused?

Not likely. But that is the rationale that the USACE used to deny FOIA requests from two separate individuals in the last few weeks. Here are the exact words:

The withheld documents are deliberative and predecisional. However these documents were not used in making the final determination regarding the permit. After my review of the documents and the case law as stated above, I have concluded the release of these documents many result in the public confusion as described above. Therefore I must withhold the documents under the protection of Exemption 5.

Public confusion? Really? We know that’s just code-speak to justify non-transparency.

To add insult to injury, the identical letter (except for identifying information, of course) was sent in response to both FOIA requests by the same bureaucratic troglodyte at the Southwestern Division of the Corps up in Dallas.

One of the FOIAs has been appealed, accepted and sent off to the Secretary of the Army in DC for a determination. Note that the last appeal has languished in DC for nearly two years. We’re not hopeful about this one escaping the black hole of bureaucracy either.

Nope. There’s no confusion here.

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