40 CFR 1601.12 - Responsibility for responding to requests.

§ 1601.12 Responsibility for responding to requests.

(a)In general. The agency that first receives a request for a record and maintains that record is the agency responsible for responding to the request. In determining which records are responsive to a request, the CSB ordinarily will include only records in its possession as of the date that it begins its search. If any other date is used, the CSB must inform the requester of that date. A record that is excluded from the requirements of the FOIA pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 552(c), is not considered responsive to a request.

(b)Authority to grant or deny requests. The Chief FOIA Officer or a designee is authorized to grant or to deny any initial request for records that are maintained by the CSB and to determine any appropriate fees.

(c)Consultation, referral, and coordination. When reviewing records, the CSB must determine whether another agency of the Federal Government is better able to determine whether the record is exempt from disclosure under the FOIA. As to any such record, the CSB must proceed in one of the following ways:

(1)Consultation. When records originated with the CSB, but contain within them information of interest to another agency or other Federal Government office, the CSB should consult with that other entity prior to making a release determination.


(i) When the CSB believes that a different agency or component of a different agency is best able to determine whether to disclose the record, the CSB should refer the responsibility for responding to the request regarding that record to that agency or component. Ordinarily, the agency that originated the record is presumed to be the best agency to make the disclosure determination. However, if the CSB and the originating agency jointly agree that the CSB is in the best position to respond regarding the record, then the record may be handled as a consultation.

(ii) Whenever the CSB refers any part of the responsibility for responding to a request to another agency, it must document the referral, maintain a copy of the record that it refers, and notify the requester of the referral, informing the requester of the name(s) of the agency to which the record was referred, including that agency's FOIA contact information.

(3)Coordination. The standard referral procedure is not appropriate where disclosure of the identity of the agency to which the referral would be made could harm an interest protected by an applicable exemption, such as the exemptions that protect personal privacy or national security interests. For example, if a non-law enforcement agency responding to a request for records on a living third party locates within its files records originating with a law enforcement agency, and if the existence of that law enforcement interest in the third party was not publicly known, then to disclose that law enforcement interest could cause an unwarranted invasion of the personal privacy of the third party. Similarly, if an agency locates within its files material originating with an Intelligence Community agency, and the involvement of that agency in the matter is classified and not publicly acknowledged, then to disclose or give attribution to the involvement of that Intelligence Community agency could cause national security harms. In such instances, in order to avoid harm to an interest protected by an applicable exemption, the CSB must coordinate with the originating agency to seek its views on whether the record can be disclosed. The release determination for the record that is the subject of the coordination will then be conveyed to the requester by the CSB.

(d)Classified information. Upon receipt of any request involving classified information, the CSB must determine whether the information is currently and properly classified in accordance with applicable classification rules. Whenever a request involves a record containing information that has been classified or may be appropriate for classification by another agency under any applicable E.O. concerning the classification of records, the CSB must refer the responsibility for responding to the request regarding that information to the agency that classified the information, or to the agency that should consider the information for classification. Whenever the CSB's record contains information that has been derivatively classified (for example, when it contains information classified by another agency), the CSB must refer the responsibility for responding to that portion of the request to the agency that classified the underlying information.

(e)Timing of responses to consultations and referrals. All consultations and referrals received by the CSB must be handled according to the date that the first agency received the perfected FOIA request.

(f)Agreements regarding consultations and referrals. The CSB may establish agreements with other agencies to eliminate the need for consultations or referrals with respect to particular types of records.

(g)No responsive record. If no records are responsive to the request, the FOIA Officer will so notify the requester in writing.

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.

This list is taken from the Parallel Table of Authorities and Rules provided by GPO [Government Printing Office].

It is not guaranteed to be accurate or up-to-date, though we do refresh the database weekly. More limitations on accuracy are described at the GPO site.

United States Code

Title 40 published on 20-Oct-2017 04:39

The following are ALL rules, proposed rules, and notices (chronologically) published in the Federal Register relating to 40 CFR Part 1601 after this date.

  • 2017-09-29; vol. 82 # 188 - Friday, September 29, 2017
    1. 82 FR 45500 - Freedom of Information Act Program
      GPO FDSys XML | Text
      Interim final rule.
        Effective date: This rule is effective September 29, 2017. Comment date: Comments must be received by October 30, 2017.
      40 CFR Part 1601