Source: Western Values Project
“DoI Violates Federal Law…what a shocker!”
“Much of our research, at WHFF, and most of our articles including our White Paper are founded on the facts obtained through FOIA requests. This new NEWS is most disturbing, although not shocking considering the source.” ~ R.T.
Since ex-lobbyist David Bernhardt took office as Interior Secretary, he’s been doing everything in his power to keep the public in the dark about his detrimental attacks on our public lands. With all the allegations of corruption and favoritism for former clients, Bernhardt’s attempts to thwart transparency aren’t surprising — but they are entirely unacceptable and a violation of the law!
And senators seem to agree. In a recent appropriations subcommittee hearing, Bernhardt was quizzed about the recently formalized policy that allows political appointees to review all public documents requested under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) before they’re released to the public.
The National Park Service warned in a memo last year that the review process was preventing them from processing public records requests within the legally mandated time frame.
Bernhardt defended the policy as “completely legal,” which isn’t very reassuring — because he also admitted that it’s “troubling” that the political review policy is, in fact, causing the department to miss legally required deadlines. His department’s inability to meet deadlines should not mean weakening government transparency policies!
We need to send a message that Bernhardt can’t get away with keeping the public in the dark on Interior’s work. Will you add your name to our petition calling for Bernhardt and the Interior Department to restore transparency and process FOIA requests in the time frame required by law?