Friday, March 20, 2009; Page A09
Holder Tells Agencies To Open More Records
The Obama administration advised federal agencies Thursday to release their records and information to the public unless foreseeable harm would result.
Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. issued guidelines fleshing out President Obama’s Jan. 21 order to reveal more government records to the public under the Freedom of Information Act, whenever another law doesn’t prohibit release.
The new standard essentially returned to one issued by Attorney General Janet Reno during the Clinton administration. It replaced a more restrictive policy imposed by the Bush administration under which the Justice Department defended any sound legal argument for withholding records.
“We are making a critical change that will restore the public’s ability to access information in a timely manner,” Holder said.