36 CFR 1007.8 - Action on appeals.
(a) Authority. Appeals shall be decided by the Executive Director after consultation with the FOIA Officer and the General Counsel.
(b) Time limit. A final determination shall be made within 20 working days after receipt of an appeal meeting the requirements of § 1007.7(c).
(c) Extensions of time. (1) If the time limit for responding to the initial request for a record was not extended under the provisions of § 1007.6(c) or was extended for fewer than 10 working days, the time for processing of the appeal may be extended to the extent reasonably necessary to the proper processing of the appeal, but in no event may the extension, when taken together with any extension made during processing of the initial request, result in an aggregate extension with respect to any one request of more than 10 working days. The time for processing of an appeal may be extended only if one or more of the unusual circumstances listed in § 1007.6(c) requires an extension.
(2) The appellant shall be advised in writing of the reasons for the extension and the date on which a final determination on the appeal is expected to be dispatched.
(3) If no determination on the appeal has been reached at the end of the 20 working day period, or the extension thereof, the requester is deemed to have exhausted his administrative remedies, giving rise to a right of review in the United States District Court for the Northern District of California, as specified in 5 U.S.C. 552(a)(4).
(4) When no determination can be reached within the applicable time limit, the appeal will nevertheless continue to be processed. On expiration of the time limit, the requester shall be informed of the reason for the delay, of the date on which a determination may be reached to be dispatched, and of the right to seek judicial review.
(d) Form of decision. (1) The final determination on an appeal shall be in writing and shall state the basis for the determination. If the determination is to release the requested records or portions thereof, the FOIA Officer shall immediately make the records available. If the determination upholds in whole or part the initial denial of a request for records, the determination shall advise the requester of the right to obtain judicial review in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California and shall set forth the names and titles or positions of each person responsible for the denial.
(2) If a requested record (or portion thereof) is being made available over the objections of a submitter made in accordance with § 1007.4(c), the submitter shall be provided notice as described in § 1007.5(b)(3).