Watchdog to probe potential interference by Interior officials in releasing public records

By: Miranda Green, The Hill, July 24, 2019

The Interior Department Inspector General said it is investigating an agency process that allows political appointees to review and potentially withhold public documents from being released.

The internal watchdog confirmed in a Tuesday letter that its audit division is examining the agency’s Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) policy — first introduced in May 2018 and known as an “awareness review” — after several advocacy groups requested a probe.

Several conservation groups, including the Western Values Project and Campaign for Accountability, filed a complaint in June asking for an investigation into the process that allows Interior political appointees to look at requested public records pertaining to them prior to release.

Click here to read the June 2019 IG complaint.

Click here to read the July 2019 supplement to the June 2019 IG complaint.

Read the rest of the article here.