25 CFR 517.3 - Definitions.

§ 517.3 Definitions.

(a)Commercial use requester means a requester seeking information for a use or purpose that furthers the commercial, trade, or profit interests of himself or the person on whose behalf the request is made, which can include furthering those interests through litigation. In determining whether a request properly belongs in this category, the FOIA Officer shall determine the use to which the requester will put the documents requested. Where the FOIA Officer has reasonable cause to doubt the use to which the requester will put the records sought, or where that use is not clear from the request itself, the FOIA Officer shall contact the requester for additional clarification before assigning the request to a specific category.

(b)Confidential commercial information means records or information provided to the government by a submitter that arguably contains material exempt from disclosure under Exemption 4 of the FOIA.

(c)Direct costs mean those expenditures by the Commission actually incurred in searching for and duplicating (and, in the case of commercial use requests, reviewing) records in response to the FOIA request. Direct costs include the salary of the employee or employees performing the work (i.e., the basic rate of pay for the employee plus 16 percent of that rate to cover benefits) and the cost of operating computers and other electronic equipment, such as photocopiers and scanners. Direct costs do not include overhead expenses, such as the cost of space, heating, or lighting of the facility in which the records are stored.

(d)Duplication refers to the process of making a copy of a record, or the information contained in it, necessary to respond to a FOIA request. Such copies can take the form of, among other things, paper copy, microfilm, audio-visual materials, or electronic records (e.g., compact discs or USB flash drives). The copies provided shall be in a form that is reasonably usable by the requester.

(e)Educational institution refers to a preschool, a public or private elementary school, an institute of undergraduate higher education, an institute of graduate higher education, an institute of professional education, or an institute of vocational education which operates a program of scholarly research. To qualify for this category, the requester must show that the request is authorized by and is made under the auspices of a qualifying institution and that the records are not sought for a commercial use, but are sought to further scholarly research.

(f)Freedom of Information Act Officer means the person designated by the Chairman to administer the FOIA.

(g)Non-commercial scientific institution refers to an institution that is not operated on a “commercial” basis as that term is used in paragraph (a) of this section, and which is operated solely for the purpose of conducting scientific research the results of which are not intended to promote any particular product or industry. To qualify for this category, the requester must show that the request is authorized by and is made under the auspices of a qualifying institution and that the records are not sought for a commercial use, but are sought to further scholarly research.

(h)Record means an agency record that is either created or obtained by an agency and is under agency control at the time of the FOIA request.

(i)Representative of the news media means any person or entity that gathers information of potential interest to a segment of the public, uses editorial skills to turn the raw materials into a distinct work, and distributes that work to an audience. The term “news” means information that is about current events or that would be of current interest to the public. Examples of news media entities include television or radio stations that broadcast “news” to the public at large and publishers of periodicals that disseminate “news” and make their products available for purchase by or free distribution to the general public, including news organizations that disseminate solely on the internet. For a “freelance journalist” to be regarded as working for a news organization, the requester must demonstrate a solid basis for expecting publication through that organization, such as a publication contract. Absent such showing, the requester may provide documentation establishing the requester's past publication record. To qualify for this category, the requester must not be seeking the requested records for a commercial use. However, a request for records supporting a news-dissemination function shall not be considered to be for a commercial use.

(j)Requester means any person, including an individual, Indian tribe, partnership, corporation, association, or public or private organization other than a Federal agency, that requests access to records in the possession of the Commission.

(k)Review means the process of examining a record in response to a FOIA request to determine if any portion of that record may be withheld under one or more of the FOIA Exemptions. It also includes processing any record for disclosure, for example, redacting information that is exempt from disclosure under the FOIA. Review time includes time spent considering any formal objection to disclosure made by a business submitter under § 517.7(c). Review time does not include time spent resolving general legal or policy issues regarding the use of FOIA Exemptions.

(l)Search refers to the time spent looking for material that is responsive to a request, including page-by-page or line-by-line identification of material within a document and also includes reasonable efforts to locate and retrieve information from records maintained in electronic form or format. The FOIA Officer shall ensure that searches are conducted in the most efficient and least expensive manner reasonably possible.

(m)Submitter means any person or entity who provides information directly or indirectly to the Commission. The term includes, but is not limited to, corporations, Indian tribal governments, state governments and foreign governments.

(n)Working day means a Federal workday that does not include Saturdays, Sundays, or Federal holidays.

This is a list of United States Code sections, Statutes at Large, Public Laws, and Presidential Documents, which provide rulemaking authority for this CFR Part.

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