12 CFR 1301.10 - Requests for business information provided to the Council.
(a)In general. Business information provided to the Council by a submitter shall not be disclosed pursuant to a FOIA request except in accordance with this section.
(b)Definitions. For purposes of this section:
(1)Business information means information from a submitter that is trade secrets or other commercial or financial information that may be protected from disclosure under Exemption 4.
(2)Submitter means any person or entity from whom the Council obtains business information, directly or indirectly. The term includes corporations, state, local, and tribal governments, and foreign governments.
(3)Exemption 4 means Exemption 4 of the FOIA, 5 U.S.C. 552(b)(4).
(c)Designation of business information. A submitter of business information shall use good-faith efforts to designate, by appropriate markings, either at the time of submission or at a reasonable time thereafter, any portions of its submission that it considers to be protected from disclosure under Exemption 4. These designations will expire ten (10) years after the date of the submission unless the submitter on his or her own initiative requests otherwise, and provides justification for, a longer designation period.
(d)Notice to submitters. The Council shall provide a submitter with prompt written notice of receipt of a request or appeal encompassing the business information of the submitter whenever required in accordance with paragraph (e) of this section. Such written notice shall either describe the exact nature of the business information requested or provide copies of the records or portions of records containing the business information. When a voluminous number of submitters must be notified, the Council may post or publish such notice in a place reasonably likely to accomplish such notification.
(e)When notice is required. The Council shall provide a submitter with notice of receipt of a request or appeal whenever:
(1) The information has been designated in good faith by the submitter as information considered protected from disclosure under Exemption 4; or
(2) The Council has reason to believe that the information may be protected from disclosure under Exemption 4 because disclosure could reasonably be expected to cause substantial competitive harm to the submitter.
(f)Opportunity to object to disclosure.
(1) Through the notice described in paragraph (d) of this section, the Council shall notify the submitter in writing that the submitter shall have ten (10) days from the date of the notice (exclusive of Saturdays, Sundays, and legal public holidays) to provide the Council with a detailed statement of any objection to disclosure. Such statement shall specify all grounds for withholding any of the information under Exemption 4, including a statement of why the information is considered to be a trade secret or commercial or financial information that is privileged or confidential. In the event that the submitter fails to respond to the notice within the time specified, the submitter shall be considered to have no objection to disclosure of the information. Information provided by a submitter pursuant to this paragraph (f) may itself be subject to disclosure under the FOIA.
(2) When notice is given to a submitter under this section, the Council shall advise the requester that such notice has been given to the submitter. The requester shall be further advised that a delay in responding to the request may be considered a denial of access to records and that the requester may proceed with an administrative appeal or seek judicial review, if appropriate. However, the Council shall invite the requester to agree to an extension of time so that the Council may review the submitter's objection to disclosure.
(g)Notice of intent to disclose. The Council shall consider carefully a submitter's objections and specific grounds for nondisclosure prior to determining whether to disclose business information responsive to the request. If the Council decides to disclose business information over the objection of a submitter, the Council shall provide the submitter with a written notice which shall include:
(1) A statement of the reasons for which the submitter's disclosure objections were not sustained;
(2) A description of the business information to be disclosed; and
(3) A specified disclosure date which is not less than ten (10) days (exclusive of Saturdays, Sundays, and legal public holidays) after the notice of the final decision to release the requested information has been provided to the submitter. Except as otherwise prohibited by law, notice of the final decision to release the requested information shall be forwarded to the requester at the same time.
(h)Notice of FOIA lawsuit. Whenever a requester brings suit seeking to compel disclosure of business information covered in paragraph (c) of this section, the Council shall promptly notify the submitter.
(i)Exception to notice requirement. The notice requirements of this section shall not apply if:
(1) The Council determines that the information shall not be disclosed;
(2) The information lawfully has been published or otherwise made available to the public; or
(3) Disclosure of the information is required by statute (other than the FOIA) or by a regulation issued in accordance with the requirements of Executive Order 12600 (3 CFR, 1987 Comp., p. 235).