Freedom of Information Act gets updated.
Dear 911 Truth Activists,
It's official: the American people finally have a Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA) that they can count on to improve government transparency in the 21st Century.
Last week, President Bush signed the OPEN Government Act into law, updating FOIA to bring greater transparency to a government that, in recent years, has increasingly made its decisions out of public view. I'm proud to have authored this important bill, and I'm even prouder that the President decided to sign it.
Our Leahy online community played a pivotal role in helping this legislation gain traction, win the support of Congress, and secure its enactment. The reforms of the OPEN Government Act will make 2008 a welcome turning point toward greater accountability, giving our government a much-needed dose of sunshine that will serve Americans for generations to come.
The OPEN Government Act will improve the FOIA process by:
* Imposing meaningful deadlines on agencies handling information requests;
* Establishing a FOIA hotline;
* Bringing government records held by private contractors into full public view;
* Creating a FOIA Ombudsman to provide an alternative to costly litigation between FOIA requestors and federal agencies; and
* Allowing federal agencies to waive FOIA fees for freelance journalists and bloggers.
Thank you for helping set 2008 off to such a promising start, and Happy New Year!