10 CFR 1703.111 - Requests for privileged treatment of documents submitted to the board.
(a)Scope. Any person submitting a document to the Board may request privileged treatment by claiming that some or all of the information contained in the document is exempt from the mandatory public disclosure requirements of FOIA and should otherwise be withheld from public disclosure.
(b)Procedures. A person claiming that information is privileged under paragraph (a) of this section must file:
(1) An application, accompanied by an affidavit, requesting privileged treatment for some or all of the information in a document, and stating the justification for nondisclosure of the information and addressing the factors set forth in paragraph (e) of this section;
(2) The original document, boldly indicating on the front page “Contains Privileged Information - Do Not Release” and identifying within the document the information for which the privileged treatment is sought;
(3) Three copies of the redacted document (i.e., without the information for which privileged treatment is sought) and with a statement indicating that information has been removed for privileged treatment; and
(4) The name, title, address, telephone number, and telecopy information of the person or persons to be contacted regarding the request for privileged treatment of documents submitted to the Board.
(c)Effect of privilege claim.
(1) The Designated FOIA Officer shall place documents for which privileged treatment is sought in accordance with paragraph (b) of this section in a nonpublic file, while the request for confidential treatment is pending. By placing documents in a nonpublic file, the Board is not making a determination on any claim for privilege. The Board retains the right to make determinations with regard to any claim of privilege, and the discretion to release information as necessary to carry out its responsibilities.
(2) The Designated FOIA Officer shall place the request for privileged treatment described in paragraph (b)(1) of this section and a copy of the redacted document described in paragraph (b)(3) of this section in a public file while the request for privileged treatment is pending.
(d)Notification of request and opportunity to comment. When a FOIA requester seeks a document for which privilege is claimed, the Designated FOIA Officer shall so notify the person who submitted the document and give that person an opportunity (at least five days) in which to comment in writing on the request. A copy of this notice shall be sent to the FOIA requester.
(e)Factors to be considered by Board. In determining whether to grant the document privileged status and to deny the request for the document the Board shall consider:
(1) Whether the information has been held in confidence by its owner;
(2) Whether the information is of a type customarily held in confidence by its owner and whether there is a rational basis therefor;
(3) Whether the information was transmitted to and received by the Board in confidence;
(4) Whether the information is available in public sources; and
(5) Whether public disclosure of the information sought to be withheld is likely to cause substantial harm to the competitive position of the owner of the information, taking into account the value of the information to the owner; the amount of effort or money, if any, expended by the owner in developing the information; and the ease or difficulty with which the information could be properly acquired or duplicated by others.
(f)Notification before release. Notice of a decision by the Designated FOIA Officer to deny a claim of privilege, in whole or in part, shall be given to any person claiming that information is privileged no less than five days before public disclosure. The decision shall be made only after consultation with the General Counsel's Office. The notice shall briefly explain why the person's objections to disclosure were not sustained. A copy of this notice shall be sent to the FOIA requester.
(g)Notification of suit in Federal courts. When a FOIA requester brings suit to compel disclosure of confidential commercial information, the Board shall notify the person who submitted documents containing such confidential commercial information of the suit.