39 CFR 3004.11 - Use of exemptions.
(a) Under FOIA, there are nine exemptions which may be used to protect information from disclosure. The Commission has paraphrased the exemptions in paragraphs (b) through (j) of this section. These paraphrases are not intended to be interpretations of the exemptions.
(b) National security information concerning national defense or foreign policy, provided that such information has been properly classified, in accordance with an Executive Order.
(c) Information related solely to the internal personnel rules and practices of an agency.
(d) Information specifically exempted from disclosure by statute, for example, 39 U.S.C. 410(c):
(1) The name or address, past or present, of any postal patron;
(2) Information of a commercial nature, including trade secrets, whether or not obtained from a person outside the Postal Service, which under good business practice would not be publicly disclosed;
(3) Information prepared for use in connection with the negotiation of collective bargaining agreements under 39 U.S.C. chapter 12, or minutes of, or notes kept during negotiating sessions conducted under such chapter;
(4) Information prepared for use in connection with proceedings under 39 U.S.C. chapter 36; and
(5) The reports and memoranda of consultants or independent contractors except to the extent that they would be required to be disclosed if prepared within the agency.
(e) Trade secrets and commercial or financial information which is obtained from a person and is privileged or confidential.
(f) Inter-agency or intra-agency memoranda or letters that would not be available by law to a party other than an agency in litigation with the agency. This exemption shall not apply to records created 25 years or more before the date on which the records were requested.
(g) Personnel and medical files and similar files, the disclosure of which would constitute a clearly unwarranted invasion of personal privacy.
(h) Records or information compiled for law enforcement purposes, the release of which:
(1) Could reasonably be expected to interfere with enforcement proceedings;
(2) Would deprive a person of a right to a fair trial or an impartial adjudication;
(3) Could reasonably be expected to constitute an unwarranted invasion of personal privacy;
(4) Could reasonably be expected to disclose the identity of a confidential source and investigations or prosecutions if such disclosure could reasonably be expected to risk circumvention of the law; or
(5) Could reasonably be expected to endanger the life or physical safety of any individual.
(i) Information contained in or related to examination, operating, or condition reports, prepared by, or on behalf of, or for the use of an agency responsible for regulating or supervising financial institutions.
(j) Geological and geophysical information and data, including maps, concerning wells.
(k) It is Commission policy to make records publicly available upon request, unless the record qualifies for exemption under one or more of the nine exemptions. It is Commission policy to make discretionary releases; however, a discretionary release is not normally appropriate for records exempt under exemptions identified in paragraphs (b), (d), (e), (g), (h)(3) and (h)(5) of this section. The remainder of the exemptions are discretionary.
(l) The following are examples of information that is not part of the public records of the Commission:
(1) Written communications between or among the Commission, members of the Commission, the Secretary, and expressly designated staff members while particularly assigned, in accordance with all applicable legal requirements, to aid the Commission in the drafting of any decision, notice, order, advisory opinion, or public report and findings, with or without opinion, or report in any matter or proceeding;
(2) Reports and records compiled or created by the Inspector General of the Commission designated as confidential; and
(3) Unaccepted offers of settlement in any matter or proceeding unless or until made public by act of the offeror.