Improving Access

Satellite Imagery FOIA Exemption

A proposed Freedom of Information Act exemption, restricting public access to satellite images and related data, appeared in the National Defense Authorization Act for FY 2005. The Senate passed the exemption in June 2004, and the broad language would have imposed strong restrictions on the dissemination of unclassified information that is relied upon for reporting to the public on disasters, international incidents, wars, and other news items.

Indian Affairs FOIA Exemption

Section 7 of S. 297, the Federal Acknowledgment Process Reform Act of 2003 exempts certain actions by the Interior Department's Assistant Secretary for Indian Affairs the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). Several groups and individuals voiced objections to a Senate Bureau of Indian Affairs reform bill, in a letter delivered to Sens. Ben Nighthorse Campbell (R-CO) and Daniel K. Inouye (D-HI) July 8.