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Proposed Rule

Freedom of Information Act Regulations

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Start Preamble

AGENCY:

Department of the Treasury.

ACTION:

Proposed rule.

SUMMARY:

This rule proposes revisions to the Department's regulations under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). The regulations are being revised to update and streamline procedures and incorporate certain changes brought about by the amendments to the FOIA under the OPEN Government Act of 2007 and the FOIA Improvement Act of 2016. Additionally, the regulations are being updated to reflect developments in the case law and to include current cost figures to be used in calculating and charging fees.

DATES:

Comment due date: December 26, 2018.

ADDRESSES:

You may submit comments by any of the following methods:

  • Federal eRulemaking Portal: http://www.regulations.gov.
  • Fax: (202) 622-3895, ATTN Ryan Law.
  • Mail: Ryan Law, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Privacy, Transparency and Records, U.S. Department of the Treasury, 1500 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20220.

Comments received by mail will be considered timely if they are postmarked on or before the comment date. The www.regulations.gov site will accept comments until 11:59 p.m. eastern time on the comment due date. The Department will consolidate all received comments and make them available, without change, including any business or personal information that you provide such as name and address information, email addresses, or phone numbers. Received comments, including attachments and other supporting materials, are part of the public record and subject to public disclosure. Do not enclose any information in your comments or supporting materials that you consider confidential or inappropriate for public disclosure. Properly submitted comments will be available for inspection and downloading at http://www.regulations.gov.

Start Further Info

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

Ryan Law, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Privacy, Transparency and Records, 202-622-0930, extension 2 (this is not a toll-free number).

End Further Info End Preamble Start Supplemental Information

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Discussion

This rule proposes revisions to the Department's regulations under the FOIA to update and streamline the language of several procedural provisions and to incorporate certain of the changes brought about by the amendments to the FOIA under the OPEN Government Act of 2007, Public Law 110-175, 121 Stat. 2524 and the FOIA Improvement Act of 2016, Public Law 114-185, 130 Stat. 538. Additionally, the regulations are being updated to reflect developments in case law and to include current cost figures to be used in calculating and charging fees.

The revisions of the FOIA regulations in 31 CFR subpart A of part 1 incorporate changes to the language and structure of the regulations. Revised provisions include § 1.1 (General Provisions), § 1.2 (Proactive disclosure of Department records), § 1.3 (Requirements for making requests), § 1.4 (Responsibility for responding to requests), § 1.5 (Timing of responses to requests), § 1.6 (Responses to requests), § 1.7 (Confidential commercial information), § 1.8 (Administrative appeals), § 1.9 (Preservation of records), § 1.10 (Fees), and § 1.11 (Other rights and services).

Sections 1.2, 1.3, 1.5, 1.6, and 1.10 all address the role of the FOIA Public Liaison in assisting requesters with resolving disputes related to their FOIA requests, as required by the OPEN Government Act of 2007.

The 2007 Act also required agencies to assign tracking numbers to requests that will take longer than 10 days to process. This requirement is implemented through § 1.6.

The FOIA Improvement Act of 2016 provides that agencies must allow a minimum of 90 days for requesters to file an administrative appeal. The Act also requires that agencies notify requesters of the availability of dispute resolution services at various times throughout the FOIA process. This proposed rule updates the Department's regulations to reflect those statutory changes (§§ 1.5, 1.6, 1.8).

A number of changes have been made to the section on fees (§ 1.10). The definition of representative of the news media has been updated to reflect amendments to the FOIA under the OPEN Government Act of 2007. Further, § 1.10 has been updated to reflect amendments to the FOIA in 2007 and 2016 that limit the agency's ability to assess fees when certain timelines or conditions are not met. The current regulation also revises § 1.10 to conform to a recent decision of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit addressing the “educational institution” fee category. See Sack v. Dept. of Defense, 823 F.3d 687 (D.C. Cir. 2016). Specifically, the definition of “educational institution” is revised to reflect the holding in Sack that students who make FOIA requests in furtherance of their coursework or other school-sponsored activities may qualify under this requester category. Therefore, the requirement that such a requester show that the request is made under the auspices of the educational institution is replaced with a requirement that the requester show that the request is made in connection with the requester's role at the educational institution. Section1.10 also proposes revisions to the Department's fee schedule. The duplication charge for photocopying will decrease to $.15 per page, while document search and review charges have been established at $21.00, $16.50, and $13.00 per quarter hour for executive, professional, and administrative time, respectively. Treasury components will be given flexibility to publish their own fee schedules that deviate from the Department's fee schedule as Start Printed Page 54060circumstances may warrant. Treasury components differ in the grades of employees that process FOIA requests, whether executive, professional, or administrative, and in the nature of records regularly produced for requesters. Therefore, Treasury has determined that as long as a component follows the OMB fee guidelines, it should have the discretion to establish its own fee structure.

Finally, the Appendices to the current regulation have been revised to reflect changes in organizational structure. Appendices pertaining to the United States Customs Service, United States Secret Service, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, Federal Law Enforcement Training Center, and the Office of Thrift Supervision have been deleted as these components are no longer part of the Department of the Treasury. The Bureau of the Public Debt and the Financial Management Service were merged in 2012 to form the Bureau of the Fiscal Service (Appendix D in these revised regulations). Appendices for two new components have been added: The Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (Appendix H) and the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (Appendix I).

Regulatory Flexibility Act

The Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA), 5 U.S.C. 601 et seq., requires agencies to prepare an initial regulatory flexibility analysis (IRFA) to determine the economic impact of the rule on small entities. A small entity is defined as either a small business, a small organization, or a small governmental jurisdiction; an individual is not a small entity. Section 605(b) of the RFA allows an agency to prepare a certification in lieu of an IRFA if the rule will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. Pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 605(b), it is hereby certified that this regulation will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities. Under the FOIA, agencies may recover only the direct costs of searching for, reviewing, and duplicating the records processed for requesters. Thus, fees assessed by the Department are nominal. Further, the “small entities” that make FOIA requests, as compared with individual requesters and other requesters, are relatively few in number. Notwithstanding this certification, the Department invites comments on the impact this rule would have on small entities.

Regulatory Planning and Review

Executive Orders 13563 and 12866 direct agencies to assess costs and benefits of available regulatory alternatives and, if regulation is necessary, to select regulatory approaches that maximize net benefits (including potential economic, environmental, public health and safety effects, distributive impacts, and equity). Executive Order 13563 emphasizes the importance of quantifying both costs and benefits, of reducing costs, of harmonizing rules, and of promoting flexibility. This rule is not a “significant regulatory action” under Executive Order 12866.

Start List of Subjects

List of Subjects in 31 CFR Part 1

  • Disclosure of Records
  • Freedom of Information Act
  • Other disclosure provisions
  • Privacy Act
End List of Subjects

For the reasons stated in the preamble, the Department of the Treasury proposes to amend 31 CFR, part 1, as follows:

Start Part

PART 1—DISCLOSURE OF RECORDS

End Part Start Amendment Part

1. The authority citation for part 1 is revised to read as follows:

End Amendment Part Start Authority

Authority: 5 U.S.C. 301, 552, 552a, 553; 31 U.S.C. 301, 321; 31 U.S.C. 3717.

End Authority Start Amendment Part

2. Subpart A of part 1 is revised to read as follows:

End Amendment Part
Subpart A—Freedom of Information Act
1.1
General provisions.
1.2
Proactive disclosures of Department records.
1.3
Requirements for making requests.
1.4
Responsibility for responding to requests.
1.5
Timing of responses to requests.
1.6
Responses to requests.
1.7
Confidential commercial information.
1.8
Administrative appeals.
1.9
Preservation of records.
1.10
Fees.
1.11
Other rights and services.

Appendix A to Subpart A of Part 1—Departmental Offices

Appendix B to Subpart A of Part 1—Internal Revenue Service

Appendix C to Subpart A of Part 1—Bureau of Engraving and Printing

Appendix D to Subpart A of Part 1—Bureau of the Fiscal Service

Appendix E to Subpart A of Part 1—United States Mint

Appendix F to Subpart A of Part 1—Office of the Comptroller of the Currency

Appendix G to Subpart A of Part 1—Financial Crimes Enforcement Network

Appendix H to Subpart A of Part 1—Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau

Appendix I to Subpart A of Part 1—Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration

Subpart A—Freedom of Information Act

General provisions.

(a) This subpart contains the rules that the Department of the Treasury follows in processing requests for records under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552 as amended. These regulations apply to all components of the Department of the Treasury. Requests made by individuals for records about themselves under the Privacy Act of 1974, 5 U.S.C. 552a, are processed under subpart C of part 1 as well as under this subpart.

(b) The components of the Department of the Treasury for the purposes of this subpart are the following offices and bureaus:

(1) The Departmental Offices, which include the offices of:

(A) The Secretary of the Treasury, including immediate staff;

(B) The Deputy Secretary of the Treasury, including immediate staff;

(C) The Chief of Staff, including immediate staff;

(D) The Executive Secretary of the Treasury and all offices reporting to such official, including immediate staff;

(E) The Under Secretary (International Affairs) and all offices reporting to such official, including immediate staff;

(F) The Under Secretary (Domestic Finance) and all offices reporting to such official, including immediate staff;

(G) The Director of the Community Development Financial Institution Fund and all offices reporting to such official, including immediate staff;

(H) The Director of the Office of Financial Research and all offices reporting to such official, including immediate staff;

(I) The Under Secretary (Terrorism and Financial Intelligence) and all offices reporting to such official, including immediate staff;

(J) The Director of the Office of Foreign Assets Control and all offices reporting to such official, including immediate staff;

(K) The General Counsel and all offices reporting to such official, including immediate staff, but not including legal counsel to the components listed in paragraphs (b)(2) through (10) of this section;

(L) The Treasurer of the United States, including immediate staff;

(M) The Assistant Secretary (Legislative Affairs) and all offices reporting to such official, including immediate staff;

(N) The Assistant Secretary (Public Affairs) and all offices reporting to such official, including immediate staff;

(O) The Assistant Secretary (Economic Policy) and all offices reporting to such official, including immediate staff;

(P) The Assistant Secretary (Tax Policy) and all offices reporting to such official, including immediate staff;Start Printed Page 54061

(Q) The Assistant Secretary (Management) and all offices reporting to such official, including immediate staff; and

(R) The Inspector General and all offices reporting to such official, including immediate staff;

(2) The Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau;

(3) The Bureau of Engraving and Printing;

(4) The Bureau of the Fiscal Service;

(5) The Financial Crimes Enforcement Network;

(6) The Internal Revenue Service;

(7) The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency;

(8) The United States Mint;

(9) The Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration;

(10) The Special Inspector General for the Troubled Asset Relief Program.

(c) Any Treasury office which is now in existence or may hereafter be established, which is not specifically listed above and is not a subsidiary unit of a component of those listed above, shall be deemed a part of the Departmental Offices for the purpose of these regulations.

(d) The head of each component is hereby authorized to substitute the official designated and change the address specified in the appendix to this subpart applicable to that component. Components may issue supplementary regulations applicable only to the component in question, which (except with respect to fee schedules) shall be consistent with these regulations. Persons interested in the records of a particular component should, therefore, also consult the Code of Federal Regulations for any rules or regulations promulgated specifically with respect to that component (see Appendices to this subpart for cross references). In the event of any actual or apparent inconsistency, these Departmental regulations shall govern.

Proactive disclosure of Department records.

(a) Records that are required by the FOIA to be made available for public inspection in an electronic format may be accessed through the Department's website, http://www.treasury.gov, and/or on the website of the component that maintains such records. The FOIA office of each component is responsible for determining which of the component's records are required to be made publicly available, as well as identifying additional records of interest to the public that are appropriate for public disclosure, and for posting such records. Each component has a FOIA Public Liaison who can assist individuals in locating records particular to that component. A list of the Department's FOIA Public Liaisons is available at: https://home.treasury.gov/​footer/​freedom-of-information-act.

(b) When a component receives three or more requests for the same records, it shall make available for public inspection in an electronic format, any records released in response to those requests.

Requirements for making requests.

(a) General information.

(1) Requests should be addressed to the FOIA office of the component that maintains the requested records. The appendices to this subpart list the addresses of each FOIA office and the methods for submitting requests to each component. Requesters are encouraged to submit requests online (through FOIA.gov, component web pages or by completing the “Submit an Online Request” form located at https://home.treasury.gov/​footer/​freedom-of-information-act.

(2) When a requester is unable to determine the appropriate Departmental component to which to direct a request, the requester may send the request to Freedom of Information Act Request, Department of the Treasury, Departmental Offices (DO), Director, FOIA and Transparency, 1500 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20220. The FOIA and Transparency team will forward the request to the component(s) that it determines to be most likely to maintain the records that are sought.

(3) A requester who is making a request for records about himself or herself must comply with the verification of identity provision set forth in section 1.26 of subpart C of this part.

(4) Where a request for records pertains to a third party, a requester may receive greater access by submitting either a notarized authorization signed by that individual or a declaration by that individual made in compliance with the requirements set forth in 28 U.S.C. 1746, authorizing disclosure of the records to the requester, or submitting proof that the individual is deceased (e.g., a copy of a death certificate). As an exercise of its administrative discretion, each component can require a requester to supply additional information, if necessary, in order to verify that a particular individual has consented to disclosure.

(b) Description of records sought. Requesters must describe the records sought in sufficient detail to enable Department personnel to locate them with a reasonable amount of effort. To the extent possible, requesters should include specific information that may assist a component in identifying the requested records, such as the date, title or name, author, recipient, subject matter of the record, case number, file designation, or reference number. Requesters should refer to the Appendices of this subpart for additional component-specific requirements. In general, requesters should include as much detail as possible about the specific records or the types of records that they are seeking. If the requester fails to reasonably describe the records sought, the component shall inform the requester what additional information is needed or why the request is deficient. Requesters who are attempting to reformulate or modify such a request may discuss their request with the component's designated FOIA contact or the FOIA Public Liaison. When a requester fails to provide sufficient detail after having been asked to clarify a request, the component shall notify the requester that the request has not been properly made and that the request will be administratively closed.

Responsibility for responding to requests.

(a) In general. The component that first receives a request for a record and maintains that record is the component responsible for responding to the request. In determining which records are responsive to a request, a component ordinarily will include only records in its possession as of the date that it begins its search. If any other date is used, the component shall 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), shall not be considered responsive to a request.

(b) Authority to grant or deny requests. The head of a component, or designee, is authorized to grant or to deny any requests for records that are maintained by that component.

(c) Re-routing of misdirected requests. When a component's FOIA office determines that a request was misdirected within the agency, the receiving component's FOIA office must route the request to the FOIA office of the proper component(s) within the agency.

(d) Consultation, referral, and coordination. When reviewing records located by a component in response to a request, the component will determine whether another agency of the Federal Government is better able to determine whether the record is exempt from Start Printed Page 54062disclosure under the FOIA. As to any such record, the agency must proceed in one of the following ways:

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

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

(ii) Whenever a component 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 agency that received the request should coordinate with the originating agency to seek its views on the disclosability of the record. The release determination for the record that is the subject of the coordination should then be conveyed to the requester by the agency that originally received the request.

(4) Timing of responses to consultations and referrals. All consultations and referrals will be handled according to the date that the FOIA request was initially received by the component or other agency of the Federal government.

(5) Agreements regarding consultations and referrals. Components may establish agreements with other Treasury components or agencies of the Federal government to eliminate the need for consultations or referrals with respect to particular types of records.

(e) Classified information. On receipt of any request involving classified information, the component shall take appropriate action to ensure compliance with part 2 of this title and with all other laws and regulations relating to proper handling of classified information. Whenever a request involves a record containing information that has been classified or may be appropriate for classification by another component or agency under any applicable executive order concerning the classification of records, the receiving component shall refer the responsibility for responding to the request regarding that information to the component or agency that classified the information, or that should consider the information for classification. Whenever a component's record contains information that has been derivatively classified, i.e., it contains information classified by another component or agency of the Federal government, the component shall refer the responsibility for responding to that portion of the request to the component or agency that classified the underlying information.

Timing of responses to requests.

(a) In general. Components ordinarily will respond to requests according to their order of receipt. The Appendices to this subpart contain the list of the Departmental components that are designated to accept requests. In instances involving misdirected requests, i.e., where a request is sent to one of the components designated in the Appendices but is actually seeking records maintained by another component, the response time will commence on the date that the request is received by the appropriate component, but in any event not later than ten working days after the request is first received.

(b) Multitrack processing. All components must designate a specific track for requests that are granted expedited processing, in accordance with the standards set forth in paragraph (e) of this section. A component may also designate additional processing tracks that distinguish between simple and more complex requests based on the estimated amount of work or time needed to process the request. A component can consider factors such as the number of pages involved in processing the request or the need for consultations or referrals. Components shall advise requesters of the track into which their request falls and, when appropriate, shall offer the requesters an opportunity to narrow their request so that it can be placed in a different processing track.

(c) Unusual circumstances. Whenever the statutory time limits for processing a request cannot be met because of “unusual circumstances,” as defined in the FOIA, and the component extends the time limits on that basis, the component shall, before expiration of the twenty-day period to respond, notify the requester in writing of the unusual circumstances involved and of the date by which processing of the request can be expected to be completed. Where the extension exceeds ten working days, the component shall, as described by the FOIA, provide the requester with an opportunity to modify the request or agree to an alternative time period for processing. The component shall make available its designated FOIA contact or its FOIA Public Liaison for this purpose. The component must also alert requesters to the availability of the Office of Government Information Services to provide dispute resolution services.

(d) Aggregating requests. For the purposes of identifying unusual circumstances under the FOIA, components may aggregate requests in cases where it reasonably appears that multiple requests, submitted either by a requester or by a group of requesters acting in concert, constitute a single request that would otherwise involve unusual circumstances. Components will not aggregate multiple requests that involve unrelated matters.

(e) Expedited processing. (1) Requests and appeals will be processed on an expedited basis only upon request and when it is determined that they involve:

(i) Circumstances in which the lack of expedited processing could reasonably be expected to pose an imminent threat to the life or physical safety of an individual;Start Printed Page 54063

(ii) An urgency to inform the public about an actual or alleged Federal government activity, if made by a person who is primarily engaged in disseminating information. The standard of “urgency to inform” requires that the records requested pertain to a matter of current exigency to the public and that delaying a response to a request for records would compromise a significant recognized interest to and throughout the general public; or

(iii) The loss of substantial due process rights.

(2) A request for expedited processing may be made at any time. Requests must be submitted to the component that maintains the records requested. The time period for making the determination on the request for expedited processing under this section shall commence on the date that the component receives the request.

(3) A requester who seeks expedited processing must submit a statement, certified to be true and correct, explaining in detail the basis for making the request for expedited processing. As a matter of administrative discretion, a component may waive the formal certification requirement.

(4) A requester seeking expedited processing under paragraph (e)(1)(ii) of this section, who is not a full-time member of the news media must establish that he or she is a person whose primary professional activity or occupation is information dissemination. Such a requester also must establish a particular urgency to inform the public about the government activity involved in the request—one that extends beyond the public's right to know about government activity generally.

(5) A component shall notify the requester within ten calendar days of the receipt of a request for expedited processing of its decision whether to grant or deny expedited processing. If expedited processing is granted, the request shall be given priority, placed in the processing track for expedited requests, and shall be processed as soon as practicable. If a component denies expedited processing, any appeal of that decision that complies with the procedures set forth in § 1.8 of this subpart shall be acted on expeditiously.

Responses to requests.

(a) Acknowledgments of requests. Upon receipt of a request that will take longer than ten business days to process, a component shall send the requester an acknowledgment letter that assigns the request an individualized tracking number. The component shall also include in the acknowledgment a brief description of the records sought to allow requesters to more easily keep track of their requests.

(b) Grants of requests. Once a component makes a determination to grant a request in full or in part, it shall notify the requester in writing. The component also shall inform the requester of any fees charged under § 1.10 of this subpart and shall disclose the requested records to the requester promptly upon payment of any applicable fees. The component must also inform the requester of the availability of the FOIA Public Liaison to offer assistance.

(c) Adverse determinations of requests. A component making an adverse determination denying a request in any respect shall notify the requester of that determination in writing. Adverse determinations, or denials of requests, include decisions that: the requested record is exempt, in whole or in part; the request does not reasonably describe the records sought; the information requested is not a record subject to the FOIA; the requested record does not exist, cannot be located, or has been destroyed; or the requested record is not readily reproducible in the form or format sought by the requester. Adverse determinations also include denials involving fees or fee waiver matters, and denials of requests for expedited processing.

(d) Content of denial letter. The denial letter shall be signed by the head of the component, or FOIA designee, and shall include, when applicable:

(1) The name and title or position of the person responsible for the denial;

(2) A brief statement of the reasons for the denial, including any FOIA exemption applied by the component in denying the request; and

(3) An estimate of the volume of any records or information withheld, for example, by providing the number of pages or some other reasonable form of estimation. This estimation is not required if the volume is otherwise indicated by deletions marked on records that are disclosed in part, or if the estimate would cause a harm protected by one of the exemptions.

(4) A statement that the denial may be appealed under § 1.8(a) of this subpart, and a description of the requirements set forth therein.

(5) A statement notifying the requester of the assistance available from the component's FOIA Public Liaison and the dispute resolution services offered by the Office of Government Information Services.

(e) Markings on released documents. Records disclosed in part must be marked clearly to show the amount of information deleted and the exemption under which the deletion was made unless doing so would harm an interest protected by an applicable exemption. The location of the information deleted shall also be indicated on the record, if technically feasible.

(f) Use of record exclusions.

(1) In the event a component identifies records that may be subject to exclusion from the requirements of the FOIA pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 552(c), the component shall consult with the Department of Justice, Office of Information Policy (OIP), before applying the exclusion.

(2) A component invoking an exclusion must maintain an administrative record of the process of invocation and of the consultation with OIP.

Confidential commercial information.

(a) Definitions.

(1) Confidential commercial information means trade secrets and commercial or financial information obtained by the Department from a submitter that may be protected from disclosure under Exemption 4 of the FOIA.

(2) Submitter means any person or entity from whom the Department obtains confidential commercial information, directly or indirectly.

(3) Designation of confidential commercial information. A submitter of confidential commercial information must use good faith efforts to designate by appropriate markings, either at the time of submission or within a reasonable time thereafter, any portion of its submission that it considers to be protected from disclosure under Exemption 4. These designations will expire ten years after the date of the submission unless the submitter requests and provides justification for a longer designation period.

(b) When notice to submitters is required.

(1) A component shall promptly provide written notice to a submitter whenever:

(i) The requested confidential commercial information has been designated in good faith by the submitter as information considered protected from disclosure under Exemption 4; or

(ii) The component has a reason to believe that the requested confidential commercial information may be protected from disclosure under Exemption 4 of the FOIA.

(2) The notice shall either describe the confidential commercial information requested or include a copy of the Start Printed Page 54064requested records or portions of records containing the information. In cases involving a voluminous number of submitters, notice may be made by posting or publishing the notice in a place or manner reasonably likely to accomplish it.

(c) Exceptions to submitter notice requirements. The notice requirements of this section shall not apply if:

(1) The component determines that the confidential commercial information is exempt from disclosure under the FOIA;

(2) The confidential commercial information lawfully has been published or has been officially made available to the public; or

(3) Disclosure of the confidential commercial information is required by a statute other than the FOIA or by a regulation issued in accordance with the requirements of Executive Order 12600 of June 23, 1987;

(d) Opportunity to object to disclosure. (1) A component will specify a reasonable time period as determined within its administrative discretion within which the submitter must respond to the notice referenced above. If a submitter has any objections to disclosure, it should provide the component a detailed written statement that specifies all grounds for withholding the particular confidential commercial information under any exemption of the FOIA. In order to rely on Exemption 4 as a basis for nondisclosure, the submitter must explain why the information constitutes a trade secret, or commercial or financial information that is privileged or confidential.

(2) A submitter who fails to respond within the time period specified in the notice shall be considered to have no objection to disclosure of the information. An objection to disclosure received by the component after the time period specified in the notice will not be considered by the component. Any information provided by a submitter under this subpart may itself be subject to disclosure under the FOIA and/or protected from disclosure by applicable exemptions or by a statute other than the FOIA.

(e) Analysis of objections. A component shall consider a submitter's objections and specific grounds for nondisclosure in deciding whether to disclose the requested confidential commercial information.

(f) Notice of intent to disclose. Whenever a component decides to disclose confidential commercial information over the objection of a submitter, the component shall provide the submitter written notice, which shall include:

(1) A statement of the reasons why each of the submitter's disclosure objections was not sustained;

(2) Copies of the records that the component intends to disclose or, in the alternative, a description of the confidential commercial information to be disclosed; and

(3) A specified disclosure date, which shall be a reasonable time subsequent to the notice.

(g) Notice of FOIA lawsuit. Whenever a requester files a lawsuit seeking to compel the disclosure of confidential commercial information, the component shall promptly notify the submitter.

(h) Requester notification. The component shall notify a requester whenever it provides the submitter with notice and an opportunity to object to disclosure; whenever it notifies the submitter of its intent to disclose the requested confidential commercial information; and whenever a submitter files a lawsuit to prevent the disclosure of the confidential commercial information.

Administrative appeals.

(a) Requirements for making an appeal. Before seeking review by a court of a component's adverse determination, a requester generally must first submit a timely administrative appeal. A requester may appeal any adverse determinations denying his or her request to the official specified in the appropriate Appendix to this subpart. Examples of adverse determinations are provided in § 1.6(c) of this subpart. The requester must make the appeal in writing and to be considered timely it must be postmarked, or in the case of electronic submissions, transmitted, within 90 calendar days after the date of the component's final response. The appeal letter should clearly identify the component's determination that is being appealed and the assigned request number. The requester should mark both the appeal letter and envelope, or subject line of the electronic transmission, “Freedom of Information Act Appeal.”

(b) Adjudication of appeals.

(1) The FOIA appeal official or designee specified in the appropriate Appendix will act on all appeals under this section.

(2) An appeal ordinarily will not be adjudicated if the request becomes a matter of FOIA litigation.

(3) On receipt of any appeal involving classified information, the FOIA appeal official or designee must take appropriate action to ensure compliance with applicable classification rules.

(c) Decision on appeals. A decision on an appeal must be made in writing by the component within 20 business days after receipt of the appeal. A decision that upholds a component's determination must contain a statement that identifies the reasons for the affirmance, including any FOIA exemptions applied. The decision must provide the requester with notification of the statutory right to file a lawsuit and will inform the requester of the mediation services offered by the Office of Government Information Services of the National Archives and Records Administration as a non-exclusive alternative to litigation. If a component's decision is remanded or modified on appeal the requester will be notified of that determination in writing. The component will then further process the request in accordance with that appeal determination and respond directly to the requester. Appeals that have not been postmarked or transmitted within the specified time frame will be considered untimely and will be administratively closed with written notice to the requester.

(d) Engaging in dispute resolution services provided by Office of Government Information Services (OGIS). Mediation is a voluntary process. If a component agrees to participate in the mediation services provided by OGIS, it will actively engage as a partner to the process in an attempt to resolve the dispute.

Preservation of records.

Each component shall preserve all correspondence pertaining to the requests that it receives under this subpart, as well as copies of all requested records, until disposition or destruction is authorized pursuant to title 44 of the United States Code or the General Records Schedule 4.2 of the National Archives and Records Administration. Records that are identified as responsive to a request will not be disposed of or destroyed while they are the subject of a pending request, administrative appeal, or lawsuit under the FOIA.

Fees.

(a) In general. Components may charge for processing requests under the FOIA in accordance with the provisions of this section or may issue their own fee schedules as long as they are consistent with the OMB Guidelines. In order to resolve any fee issues that arise under this section, a component may contact a requester for additional information. A component ordinarily will collect all applicable fees before sending copies of records to a requester. Start Printed Page 54065Requesters must pay fees by check or money order made payable to the Treasury of the United States, or by other means specified at https://home.treasury.gov/​footer/​freedom-of-information-act.

(b) Definitions. For purposes of this section:

(1) Commercial-use request is a request for information for a use or a purpose that furthers a commercial, trade, or profit interest, which can include furthering those interests through litigation.

(2) Direct costs are those expenses that a component expends in searching for and duplicating (and, in the case of commercial-use requests, reviewing) records in order to respond to a FOIA request. For example, direct costs include the salary of the employee 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 costs of space, and of heating or lighting a facility. Components shall ensure that searches, review, and duplication are conducted in the most efficient and the least expensive manner.

(3) Duplication is reproducing a copy of a record or of the information contained in it, necessary to respond to a FOIA request. Copies can take the form of paper, audiovisual materials, or electronic records, among others.

(4) Educational institution is any school that operates a program of scholarly research. A requester in this category must show that the request is made in connection with the requester's role at the educational institution. Components may seek assurance from the requester that the request is in furtherance of scholarly research and will advise requesters of their placement in this category.

(5) Noncommercial scientific institution is an institution that is not operated on a “commercial” basis, as defined in paragraph (b)(1) of this section, and that is operated solely for the purpose of conducting scientific research, the results of which are not intended to promote any particular product or industry. A requester in this category must show that the request is authorized by and is made under the auspices of a qualifying institution and that the records are sought to further scientific research and not for a commercial use.

(6) Representative of the news media is any person or entity that actively gathers information of potential interest to a segment of the public, uses its 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 broadcasting news to the public at large and publishers of periodicals that disseminate “news” and make their products available through a variety of means to the general public. A request for records that supports the news-dissemination function of the requester shall not be considered to be for a commercial use. “Freelance” journalists who demonstrate a solid basis for expecting publication through a news media entity shall be considered as a representative of the news media. A publishing contract would provide the clearest evidence that publication is expected; however, components shall also consider a requester's past publication record in making this determination.

(7) Other requester refers to a requester who does not fall within any of the previously described categories.

(8) Review is the examination of a record located in response to a request in order to determine whether any portion of it is exempt from disclosure. Review time includes time spent processing any record for disclosure, such as doing all that is necessary to prepare the record for disclosure, including the process of redacting the record and marking the appropriate exemptions. Review time also includes time spent obtaining and considering any formal objection to disclosure made by a confidential commercial information submitter under § 1.7 of this subpart, but it does not include time spent resolving general legal or policy issues regarding the application of exemptions. Review costs are properly charged even if a record ultimately is not disclosed.

(9) Search is the process of looking for and retrieving records or information responsive to a request. Search time includes time devoted to page-by-page or line-by-line identification of information within records; and the reasonable efforts expended to locate and retrieve information from electronic records.

(c) Charging fees. Unless a component has issued a separate fee schedule, or a waiver or reduction of fees has been granted under paragraph (k) of this section, components shall charge the following fees. Because the fee amounts provided below already account for the direct costs associated with a given fee type, components should not add any additional costs to those charges.

(1) Search. (i) Search fees shall be charged for all requests, subject to the restrictions of paragraph (d) of this section. Components will charge search fees for all other requesters, subject to the restrictions of paragraph (d) of this section. Components may properly charge for time spent searching even if they do not locate any responsive records or if they determine that the records are entirely exempt from disclosure.

(ii) For each quarter hour spent by personnel searching for requested records, including electronic searches that do not require new programming, the fees shall be as follows: Executive—$21; professional—$16.50; and administrative—$13.00.

(iii) In addition, requesters will be charged the direct costs associated with the creation of any new computer program required to locate the requested records.

(2) Duplication. Duplication fees will be charged to all requesters, subject to the restrictions of paragraph (d) of this section. A component shall honor a requester's preference for receiving a record in a particular form or format where it is readily reproducible by the component in the form or format requested. Where photocopies are supplied, the component will provide one copy per request at a cost of $0.15 per page. For copies of records produced on tapes, disks, other forms of duplication, or other electronic media, components will charge the direct costs of producing the copy, including operator time. Where paper documents must be scanned in order to comply with a requester's preference to receive the records in an electronic format, the requester shall pay the direct costs associated with scanning those materials, including operator's time. For other forms of duplication, components will charge the direct costs.

(3) Review. Review fees will only be charged to requesters who make commercial-use requests. Review fees will be assessed in connection with the initial review of the record, i.e., the review conducted by a component to determine whether an exemption applies to a particular record or portion of a record. No charge will be made for review at the administrative appeal stage of exemptions applied at the initial review stage. However, when the appellate authority determines that a particular exemption no longer applies, any costs associated with a component's re-review of the records in order to consider the use of other exemptions may be assessed as review fees. Review Start Printed Page 54066costs are properly charged even if a record ultimately is not disclosed. Review fees will be charged at the same rates as those charged for a search under paragraph (c)(1)(ii) of this section.

(d) Restrictions on charging fees. (1) No search fees will be charged for requests by educational institutions, noncommercial scientific institutions, or representatives of the news media (unless the records are sought for commercial use).

(2) If a component fails to comply with the FOIA's time limits in which to respond to a request, it may not charge search fees, or, in the instances of requests from requesters described in paragraph (d)(1) of this section, may not charge duplication fees, except as described in paragraphs (d)(2)(i) through (iii) of this section.

(i) If a component has determined that unusual circumstances as defined by the FOIA apply and the agency provided timely written notice to the requester in accordance with the FOIA, a failure to comply with the time limit shall be excused for an additional ten days.

(ii) If a component has determined that unusual circumstances as defined by the FOIA apply, and more than 5,000 pages are necessary to respond to the request, the component may charge search fees, or, in the case of requesters described in paragraph (d)(1) of this section, may charge duplication fees if the following steps are taken. The component must have provided timely written notice of unusual circumstances to the requester in accordance with the FOIA and the component must have discussed with the requester via written mail, email, or telephone (or made not less than three good-faith attempts to do so) how the requester could effectively limit the scope of the request in accordance with 5 U.S.C. 552(a)(6)(B)(ii). If this exception is satisfied, the component may charge all applicable fees incurred in the processing of the request.

(iii) If a court has determined that exceptional circumstances exist as defined in the FOIA, a failure to comply with the time limits shall be excused for the length of time provided by the court order.

(3) No search or review fees will be charged for a quarter-hour period unless more than half of that period is required for search or review.

(4) Except for requesters seeking records for a commercial use, components will provide without charge:

(i) The first 100 pages of duplication (or the cost equivalent for other media); and

(ii) The first two hours of search.

(5) When, after first deducting the 100 free pages (or its cost equivalent) and the first two hours of search, a total fee calculated under paragraph (c) of this section is $25.00 or less for any request, no fee will be charged.

(e) Notice of anticipated fees in excess of $25.00. When a component determines or estimates that the fees to be assessed in accordance with this section will exceed $25.00, the component shall notify the requester of the actual or estimated amount of the fees, including a breakdown of the fees for search, review or duplication, unless the requester has indicated a willingness to pay fees as high as those anticipated. If only a portion of the fee can be estimated readily, the component shall advise the requester accordingly. In cases in which a requester has been notified that the actual or estimated fees are in excess of $25.00, the request shall not be considered received and further work will not be completed until the requester commits in writing to pay the actual or estimated total fee. Such a commitment must be made by the requester in writing, must indicate a given dollar amount the requester is willing to pay, and must be received by the component within 30 calendar days from the date of notification of the fee estimate. If a commitment is not received within this period, the requester shall be notified, in writing, that the request shall be closed. Components will inform the requester of their right to seek assistance from the appropriate component FOIA Public Liaison or other FOIA professional to assist the requester in reformulating request in an effort to reduce fees. Components are not required to accept payments in installments. If the requester has indicated a willingness to pay some designated amount of fees, but the component estimates that the total fee will exceed that amount, the component will toll the processing of the request when it notifies the requester of the estimated fees in excess of the amount the requester has indicated a willingness to pay. The Component will inquire whether the requester wishes to revise the amount of fees the requester is willing to pay or modify the request. Once the requester responds, the time to respond will resume from where it was at the date of the notification.

(f) Charges for other services. Although not required to provide special services, if a component chooses to do so as a matter of administrative discretion, the direct costs of providing the service will be charged. Examples of such services include certifying that records are true copies, providing multiple copies of the same document, or sending records by means other than first class mail.

(g) Charging interest. Components may charge interest on any unpaid bill starting on the 31st day following the date of billing the requester. Interest charges will be assessed at the rate provided in 31 U.S.C. 3717 and will accrue from the billing date until payment is received by the component. Components will follow the provisions of the Debt Collection Act of 1982 (Pub. L. 97-365, 96 Stat. 1749), as amended, and its administrative procedures, including the use of consumer reporting agencies, collection agencies, and offset.

(h) Aggregating requests. When a component reasonably believes that a requester or a group of requesters acting in concert is attempting to divide a single request into a series of requests for the purpose of avoiding fees, the component may aggregate those requests and charge accordingly. Components may presume that multiple requests of this type made within a 30-day period have been made in order to avoid fees. For requests separated by a longer period, components will aggregate them only where there is a reasonable basis for determining that aggregation is warranted in view of all the circumstances involved. Multiple requests involving unrelated matters will not be aggregated.

(i) Advance payments. (1) For requests other than those described in paragraphs (i)(2) and (i)(3) of this section, a component shall not require the requester to make an advance payment before work is commenced or continued on a request. Payment owed for work already completed (i.e., payment before copies are sent to a requester) is not an advance payment.

(2) When a component determines or estimates that a total fee to be charged under this section will exceed $250.00, it may require that the requester make an advance payment up to the amount of the entire anticipated fee before beginning to process the request. A component may elect to process the request prior to collecting fees when it receives a satisfactory assurance of full payment from a requester with a history of prompt payment.

(3) Where a requester has previously failed to pay a properly charged FOIA fee to any component or agency within 30 calendar days of the billing date, a component may require that the requester pay the full amount due, plus any applicable interest on that prior request and the component may require that the requester make an advance payment of the full amount of any anticipated fee before the component Start Printed Page 54067begins to process a new request or continues to process a pending request, or any pending appeal. Where a component has a reasonable basis to believe that a requester has misrepresented his or her identity in order to avoid paying outstanding fees, it may require that the requester provide proof of identity.

(4) In cases in which a component requires advance payment, the request shall not be considered received and further work will not be completed until the required payment is received. If the requester does not pay the advance payment within 30 calendar days after the date of the component's fee determination letter, the request will be closed.

(j) Other statutes specifically providing for fees. The fee schedule of this section does not apply to fees charged under any statute that specifically requires an agency to set and collect fees for particular types of records. In instances where records responsive to a request are subject to a statutorily-based fee schedule program, the component will inform the requester of the contact information for that source.

(k) Requirements for waiver or reduction of fees.

(1) Requesters may seek a waiver of fees by submitting a written application demonstrating how disclosure of the requested information is in the public interest because it is likely to contribute significantly to public understanding of the operations or activities of the government and is not primarily in the commercial interest of the requester.

(2) A component must furnish records responsive to a request without charge or at a reduced rate when it determines, based on all available information, that disclosure of the requested information is in the public interest because it is likely to contribute significantly to public understanding of the operations or activities of the government and is not primarily in the commercial interest of the requester. In deciding whether this standard is satisfied the component must consider the factors described in paragraphs (k)(2)(i) through (iii) of this section:

(i) Disclosure of the requested information would shed light on the operations or activities of the government. The subject of the request must concern identifiable operations or activities of the Federal Government with a connection that is direct and clear, not remote or attenuated.

(ii) Disclosure of the requested information would be likely to contribute significantly to public understanding of those operations or activities. This factor is satisfied when the following criteria are met:

(A) Disclosure of the requested records must be meaningfully informative about government operations or activities. The disclosure of information that is already in the public domain, in either the same or a substantially identical form, would not be meaningfully informative if nothing new would be added to the public's understanding.

(B) The disclosure must contribute to the understanding of a reasonably broad audience of persons interested in the subject, as opposed to the individual understanding of the requester. A requester's expertise in the subject area as well as the requester's ability and intention to effectively convey information to the public must be considered. Components will presume that a representative of the news media will satisfy this consideration.

(iii) The disclosure must not be primarily in the commercial interest of the requester. To determine whether disclosure of the requested information is primarily in the commercial interest of the requester, components will consider the following criteria:

(A) Components must identify whether the requester has any commercial interest that would be furthered by the requested disclosure. A commercial interest includes any commercial, trade, or profit interest. Requesters must be given an opportunity to provide explanatory information regarding this consideration.

(B) If there is an identified commercial interest, the component must determine whether that is the primary interest furthered by the request. A waiver or reduction of fees is justified when the requirements of paragraphs (k)(2)(i) and (ii) of this section are satisfied and any commercial interest is not the primary interest furthered by the request. Components ordinarily will presume that when a news media requester has satisfied the requirements of paragraphs (k)(2)(i) and (ii) of this section, the request is not primarily in the commercial interest of the requester. Disclosure to data brokers or others who merely compile and market government information for direct economic return will not be presumed to primarily serve the public interest.

(3) Where only some of the records to be released satisfy the requirements for a waiver of fees, a waiver shall be granted for those records.

(4) Requests for a waiver or reduction of fees should be made when the request is first submitted to the component and should address the criteria referenced above. A requester may submit a fee waiver request at a later time so long as the underlying record request is pending or on administrative appeal. When a requester who has committed to pay fees subsequently asks for a waiver of those fees and that waiver is denied, the requester shall be required to pay any costs incurred up to the date the fee waiver request was received.

(5) The requester shall be notified in writing of the decision to grant or deny the fee waiver.

Other rights and services.

Nothing in this subpart shall be construed to entitle any person, as of right, to any service or to the disclosure of any record to which such person is not entitled under the FOIA.

Appendix A to Subpart A of Part 1—Departmental Offices

1. In general. This appendix applies to the Departmental Offices as defined in 31 CFR 1.1(b)(1).

2. Public Reading Room. The public reading room for the Departmental Offices is the Treasury Library. The library is located in the Freedman's Bank Building (Treasury Annex), Room 1020, 1500 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20220. For building security purposes, visitors are required to make an appointment by calling 202-622-0990. Treasury also maintains an electronic reading room, which may be accessed at https://home.treasury.gov/​footer/​freedom-of-information-act.

3. Requests for records.

(a) Initial determinations as to whether to grant requests for records of the Departmental Offices will be made by the Director for FOIA and Transparency, or the designee of such official, with the exception of initial determinations by the Office of the Inspector General and the Special Inspector General for the Troubled Asset Relief Program, which will be made by the designee of the respective Inspector General.

(b) Requests for records should be sent to: Freedom of Information Request, Departmental Offices, Director, FOIA and Transparency, Department of the Treasury, 1500 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20220. Requests may also be submitted via email at FOIA@treasury.gov.

4. Administrative appeal of initial determination to deny records.

(a) Appellate determinations with respect to records of the Departmental Offices or requests for expedited processing will be made by the Deputy Assistant Secretary for Privacy, Transparency, and Records, or the designee of such official, with the exception of appellate determinations by the Office of the Inspector General and the Special Inspector General for the Troubled Asset Relief Program, which will be made by the respective Inspector General or his or her designee.

(b) Appeals should be addressed to: Freedom of Information Appeal, Departmental Offices, FOIA and Start Printed Page 54068Transparency, Department of the Treasury, 1500 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20220. Appeals may also be submitted via email at FOIA@treasury.gov.

Appendix B to Subpart A of Part 1—Internal Revenue Service

1. In general. This appendix applies to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). See also 26 CFR 601.702.

2. Public reading room. The IRS no longer maintains physical reading rooms. Documents for the public are found on various websites at irs.gov including the electronic FOIA Reading Room located at https://www.irs.gov/​uac/​electronic-reading-room.

3. Requests for records. Initial determinations as to whether to grant requests for records of the IRS, grant expedited processing, grant a fee waiver, or determine requester category will be made by those officials specified in 26 CFR 601.702.

Requests for records should be submitted to the IRS using the information below:

IRS Accepts FOIA Requests by Fax or by Mail

If your request is for IRS Headquarters Office records concerning matters of nationwide applicability, such as published guidance (regulations and revenue rulings), program management, operations, or policies, including National or Headquarters Offices of Chief Counsel records that are not available at the Electronic FOIA Reading Room site:If your request is for your own records or other records controlled at IRS field locations including Division Counsel offices that are not available at the Electronic FOIA Reading Room site:
Fax: 877-807-9215Fax: 877-891-6035.
Mail: IRS FOIA Request, Stop 211, P.O. Box 621506, Atlanta, GA 30362-3006.Mail: IRS FOIA Request, Stop 93A, Post Office Box 621506, Atlanta GA 30362-3006.

4. Administrative appeal of initial determination to deny records. Appellate determinations with respect to records of the Internal Revenue Service will be made by the Commissioner of Internal Revenue or the delegate of such officer. Appeals must be in writing and addressed to: IRS Appeals Attention: FOIA Appeals, M/Stop 55202, 5045 E. Butler Ave., Fresno, CA 93727-5136.

Appendix C to Subpart A of Part 1—Bureau of Engraving and Printing

1. In general. This appendix applies to the Bureau of Engraving and Printing (BEP).

2. Public reading room. BEP's public reading room is located at 14th and C Streets SW, Washington, DC 20228. Individuals wishing to visit the public reading room must request an appointment by telephoning (202) 874-2500. The reading room is open on official business days from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. eastern standard time. Visitors shall comply with 31 CFR part 605, governing the conduct of persons within the buildings and grounds of the BEP. In addition, BEP also maintains an electronic reading room, which may be accessed at http://www.bep.gov/​bepfoialibrary.html.

3. Requests for records. Initial determinations as to whether to grant or deny requests for records of the BEP or applicable fees will be made by the BEP Director delegate, i.e., Disclosure Officer. Requests may be mailed or faxed to: FOIA/PA Request, Disclosure Officer, Bureau of Engraving and Printing, Office of the Chief Counsel—FOIA and Transparency Services, Washington, DC 20228-0001, Fax Number: (202) 874-2951.

4. Administrative Appeal of initial determination to deny records. Appellate determinations with respect to records of the BEP will be made by the Director of the BEP or the delegate of the Director for purposes of this section. Appeals may be mailed or delivered in person to: FOIA/PA APPEAL, Director, Bureau of Engraving and Printing, Office of the Director, 14th and C Streets SW, Washington, DC 20228-0001.

Appendix D to Subpart A of Part 1— Bureau of the Fiscal Service

1. In general. This appendix applies to the Bureau of the Fiscal Service.

2. Public reading room. The public reading room for the Bureau of the Fiscal Service is the Treasury Library. The library is located in the Freedman's Bank Building (Treasury Annex), Room 1020, 1500 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20220. For building security reasons, visitors are required to make an appointment by calling 202-622-0990. Fiscal Service also maintains an electronic reading room, which may be accessed at https://www.fiscal.treasury.gov/​foia/​foia_​readingroom.htm.

3. Requests for records. Initial determinations whether to grant requests for records will be made by the Disclosure Officer, Bureau of the Fiscal Service. Requests may be mailed or delivered in person to: Freedom of Information Request, Disclosure Officer, Bureau of the Fiscal Service, 401 14th Street SW, Washington, DC 20227.

4. Administrative appeal of initial determination to deny records. Appellate determinations will be made by the Commissioner, Bureau of the Fiscal Service, or that official's delegate. Appeals may be mailed to: Freedom of Information Appeal (FOIA), Commissioner, Bureau of the Fiscal Service 401 14th Street SW, Washington, DC 20227.

Appeals may be delivered personally to the Office of the Commissioner, Bureau of the Fiscal Service, 401 14th Street SW, Washington, DC.

Appendix E to Subpart A of Part 1—United States Mint

1. In general. This appendix applies to the United States Mint.

2. Public reading room. The U.S. Mint will provide a room on an ad hoc basis when necessary. Contact the Freedom of Information/Privacy Act Officer, United States Mint, Judiciary Square Building, 7th Floor, 633 3rd Street NW, Washington, DC 20220.

3. Requests for records. Initial determinations as to whether to grant requests for records of the United States Mint will be made by the Freedom of Information/Privacy Act Officer, United States Mint. Requests may be mailed or delivered in person to: Freedom of Information Act Request, Freedom of Information/Privacy Act Officer, United States Mint, Judiciary Square Building, 7th Floor, 633 3rd Street NW, Washington, DC 20220.

4. Administrative appeal of initial determination to deny records. Appellate determinations with respect to records of the United States Mint will be made by the Director of the Mint. Appeals made by mail should be addressed to: Freedom of Information Appeal, Director, United States Mint, Judiciary Square Building, 7th Floor, 633 3rd Street NW, Washington, DC 20220.

Appendix F to Subpart A of Part 1—Office of the Comptroller of the Currency

1. In general. This appendix applies to the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency.

2. Public reading room. The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency will make materials available through its Public Information Room at 250 E Street SW, Washington, DC 20219.

3. Requests for records. Initial determinations as to whether to grant requests for records of the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency will be made by the Disclosure Officer or the official so designated. Requests may be mailed or delivered in person to: Freedom of Information Act Request, Disclosure Officer, Communications Division, 3rd Floor, Comptroller of the Currency, 250 E Street SW, Washington, DC 20219.

4. Administrative appeal of initial determination to deny records. Appellate determinations with respect to records of the Comptroller of the Currency will be made by the Chief Counsel or delegates of such official. Appeals made by mail shall be addressed to: Communications Division, Comptroller of the Currency, 250 E Street SW, Washington, DC 20219.Start Printed Page 54069

Appeals may be delivered personally to the Communications Division, Comptroller of the Currency, 250 E Street SW, Washington, DC.

Appendix G to Subpart A of Part 1—Financial Crimes Enforcement Network

1. In general. This appendix applies to the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN).

2. Public reading room. FinCEN will provide records on the online reading room located on the FinCEN FOIA page or in the Code of Federal Regulations.

3. Requests for records. Initial determinations as to whether to grant requests for records of FinCEN will be made by the Freedom of Information Act/Privacy Act Officer, FinCEN. Requests for records may be mailed to: Freecom of Information Act/Privacy Act Request, Financial Crimes Enforcement Network, Post Office Box 39, Vienna, VA 22183.

4 Administrative appeal of initial determination to deny records. Appellate determinations with respect to the records of FinCEN will be made by the Director of FinCEN or the delegate of the Director. Appeals should be mailed to: Freedom of Information Act Appeal, Post Office Box 39, Vienna, VA 22183, or emailed to: FinCENFOIA@fincen.gov.

Appendix H to Subpart A of Part 1—Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau

1. In general. This appendix applies to the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (TTB).

2. Public reading room. The public reading room for TTB is maintained at 1310 G Street NW, Washington, DC 20005. For building security purposes, visitors are required to make an appointment by calling 202-882-9904.

3. Requests for records. Initial determinations as to whether to grant requests for records of TTB will be made by the Director, Regulations and Rulings Division. Requests for records may be mailed to: TTB FOIA Requester Service Center, 1310 G Street NW, Box 12, Washington, DC 20005. Requests may also be faxed to: 202-453-2331.

4. Administrative appeal of initial determination to deny records. Appellate determinations with respect to the records of TTB will be made by the Assistant Administrator (Headquarters Operations), Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Burea or the delegate of such official. Appeals may be mailed or delivered in person to: FOIA Appeal, Assistant Administrator (Headquarters Operations), Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau, 1310 G Street NW, Box 12, Washington, DC 20005.

Appendix I to Subpart A of Part 1—Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration

1. In general. This appendix applies to the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA).

2. Public reading room. TIGTA will provide a room upon request when necessary. Contact the Disclosure Branch, Office of Chief Counsel, TIGTA, at 202-622-4068.

3. Requests for records. Initial determinations as to whether to grant requests for records of TIGTA will be made by the Disclosure Officer, TIGTA. Requests for records may be mailed to: Freedom of Information Act/Privacy Act Request, Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration, Office of Chief Counsel, Disclosure Branch, 1401 H Street NW, Room 469, Washington, DC 20005. You may also view the How to Make a FOIA Request for TIGTA Records at https://www.treasury.gov/​tigta/​important_​foia_​mafr.shtml. TIGTA's FOIA email address is FOIA.Reading.Room@tigta.treas.gov.

4. Administrative appeal of initial determination to deny records. Appellate determinations with respect to the records of TIGTA will be made by the Chief Counsel, TIGTA, or the delegate of the Chief Counsel. Appeals should be mailed to: Freedom of Information Act/Privacy Act Appeal, Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration, Office of Chief Counsel, 1401 H Street NW, Room 469, Washington, DC 20005.

Start Signature

David F. Eisner,

Assistant Secretary for Management.

End Signature End Supplemental Information

[FR Doc. 2018-23447 Filed 10-25-18; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 4810-25-P