Scott A. Hodes addresses the responses from various groups about the proposed new Department of Justice (“DOJ”) FOIA regulations which call for DOJ components to “respond to the request as if the excluded records did not exist. This response should not differ in wording from any other response given by the component” when applying an exclusion to the FOIA.
Law librarian, criminal defense attorney and prolific author Ken Strutin brings into focus how electronic access to scholarly information is impacting library collection policies as well as professional publication formats, and as a result, how a new legal research environment is developing. Ken’s article provides a selected collection of resources about the law review publishing process, emerging trends in the information cycle, and practical guides for developing an article and getting it to press.
Scott A. Hodes explains how the spending reductions mandated by the recent Debt Ceiling bill will have tremendous impacts on citizen’s accessing government information on a number of fronts. While most in Congress will tell you they are in favor of various access laws, paying for them is another matter.
Scott A. Hodes argues that we have no real benchmark to determine executive branch success in fulfilling Presidential promises about openness and transparency. Rather he contends that the measure is not each time the administration doesn’t release something in a timely fashion to say it has failed the test.
Scott A. Hodes contends that reducing FOIA Operations any further is the wrong way to go if the objectives of increasing government transparency are to be pursued. The actual process of searching for records in response to FOIA requests and processing those requests requires human interaction – in other words, while the documents themselves can be digitized, a person will always be required to search for and process responsive records.
Scott A. Hodes comments on recent reports that the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) added a new layer of scrutiny for FOIA requests that came from what it considered high profile groups (basically political non-profits and media organizations). The argument is that this review did or could potentially deny these requesters material they should receive and these denials (or potential denials) were only for political purposes.
Scott A. Hodes provides perspective, and an overall grade, to how the administration has done during the first half of its first term in regard to FOIA.
Wendy Schneider outlines what you really need to know about motion practice in the Eastern District of Texas. Her previous two guides, for the Southern District of New York and the Central District of California, are available here.
You know the Federal Rules backwards and forwards, but its compliance with the local rules that really makes a civil litigator look like a pro to colleagues and clients. In this ongoing LLRX series, the editorial team of SmartRules gives you the tools to navigate motion practice in these busy federal courts with ease and grace. We’ve outlined the key provisions and highlighted the pitfalls. Here’s what you really need to know about motion practice in the Central District of California.
Scott A. Hodes notes that in the current Congress there are bills pending that would create a commission to come up with ideas for faster FOIA processing. He contends that by taking those ideas, along with a few days of congressional oversight hearings to solicit other opinions, Congress would have ample information to create an actual bill that would implement faster FOIA processing now rather than wait for a “commission” to come up with these same ideas.