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 Decade: 2000-2009
 Collection: Congressional Research Service Reports
Access to Government Information in the United States

Access to Government Information in the United States

Date: August 31, 2009
Creator: Ginsberg, Wendy R.
Description: The U.S. Constitution makes no specific allowance for any one of the three branches of the federal government to have access to information held by the others. No provision in the U.S. Constitution expressly establishes a procedure for public access to government information. Congress has legislated various public access laws. Among these laws are two records access statutes, The Freedom of Information Act, the Privacy Act, and two meetings access statutes, the Federal Advisory Committee Act, and the Government in the Sunshine Act. This report offers an overview of the four information access laws noted above, and provides citations to additional resources related to these tools.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Security Classification Policy and Procedure: E.O. 12958, as Amended

Security Classification Policy and Procedure: E.O. 12958, as Amended

Date: December 31, 2009
Creator: Kosar, Kevin R.
Description: This report describes security classification policy and procedure, largely prescribed in a series of successive presidential executive orders issued over the past 50 years. This policy provides the rationale and arrangements for designating information officially secret for reasons of national security, and for its declassification as well.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Security Classification Policy and Procedure: E.O. 12958, as Amended

Security Classification Policy and Procedure: E.O. 12958, as Amended

Date: May 14, 2003
Creator: Relyea, Harold C.
Description: This report describes security classification policy and procedure, largely prescribed in a series of successive presidential executive orders issued over the past 50 years. This policy provides the rationale and arrangements for designating information officially secret for reasons of national security, and for its declassification as well.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Security Classification Policy and Procedure: E.O. 12958, as Amended

Security Classification Policy and Procedure: E.O. 12958, as Amended

Date: June 4, 2009
Creator: Kosar, Kevin R.
Description: This report describes security classification policy and procedure, largely prescribed in a series of successive presidential executive orders issued over the past 50 years. This policy provides the rationale and arrangements for designating information officially secret for reasons of national security, and for its declassification as well.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Covert Action: Legislative Background and Possible Policy Questions

Covert Action: Legislative Background and Possible Policy Questions

Date: July 6, 2009
Creator: Cumming, Alfred
Description: Published reports have suggested that in the wake of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, the Pentagon has expanded its counter-terrorism intelligence activities as part of what the Bush Administration termed the global war on terror. This report discusses the Department of Defense's (DOD) various counter-terrorist intelligence activities, whether or not they constitute classification as "covert action," and the challenge of clarifying the roles and responsibilities of various intelligence activities with regard to clandestine activities. This report examines the statutory procedures governing covert action and associated questions to consider.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Presidential Libraries: The Federal System and Related Legislation

Presidential Libraries: The Federal System and Related Legislation

Date: November 26, 2008
Creator: Relyea, Harold C.
Description: Through the National Archives and Records Administration, the federal government currently manages and maintains 12 presidential libraries. Inaugurated with the Presidential Libraries Act of 1955, these entities are privately constructed on behalf of former Presidents and, upon completion, are deeded to the federal government. This report provides a brief overview of the federal presidential libraries system and tracks the progress of related legislation.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
"Gang of Four" Congressional Intelligence Notifications

"Gang of Four" Congressional Intelligence Notifications

Date: July 14, 2009
Creator: Cumming, Alfred
Description: "Gang of Four" intelligence notifications generally are oral briefings of certain particularly sensitive non-covert action intelligence activities, including principally, but not exclusively, intelligence collection programs, that the Intelligence Community typically limits to the chairmen and ranking members of the two congressional intelligence committees, and at times, but not always, to their respective staff directors. This report reviews the history of Gang of Four notification process and compares this procedure with that of the "Gang of Eight" notification procedure.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Intelligence Spending: Public Disclosure Issues

Intelligence Spending: Public Disclosure Issues

Date: February 15, 2007
Creator: Best, Jr., Richard A. & Bazan, Elizabeth B.
Description: This report describes the constituent parts of the intelligence budget, past practice in handling intelligence authorizations and appropriations, the arguments that have been advanced for and against making intelligence spending totals public, a legal analysis of these issues, and a review of the implications of post-Cold War developments on the question. It also describes past congressional interest in keeping intelligence spending totals secret.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Federal Rulemaking: The Role of the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs

Federal Rulemaking: The Role of the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs

Date: June 9, 2009
Creator: Copeland, Curtis W.
Description: This report discusses the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1980, which created the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA) within the Office of Management and Budget (OMB). This report addresses OIRA's responsibilities, controversies related to OIRA, and possible legislative issues involving OIRA, including increasing or decreasing the office's funding and staffing, and improvements in the transparency of OIRA's review process.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Protection of Classified Information by Congress: Practices and Proposals

Protection of Classified Information by Congress: Practices and Proposals

Date: May 27, 2008
Creator: Kaiser, Frederick M.
Description: The protection of classified national security and other controlled information is of concern not only to the executive branch - which determines what information is to be safeguarded, for the most part - but also to Congress, which uses the information to fulfill its constitutional responsibilities. It has established mechanisms to safeguard controlled information in its custody, although these arrangements have varied over time between the two chambers and among panels in each. This report explores and analyzes said mechanisms. It also discusses various proposals for standardization of and modifications to current policies.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
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