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The FOIA allows the general public to request records in writing from the Federal Government. Some records are released to the public under the FOIA and may therefore reflect deletion of some information in accordance with the FOIA's nine statutory exemptions or two law enforcement record exclusions. A consolidated list of such records is on Defense Link.
For Air Force Reading Room/Frequently requested documents released to the public, under the FOIA, click here.
What is the FOIA?
The Freedom of Information Act Program (DODR 5400.7) allows the general public including foreign citizens, military and civilian personnel acting as private citizens, to request records electronically or in writing from the Federal Government. Some records are released to the public under the Freedom of Information Act, and may therefore reflect deletion of some information in accordance with the FOIA's nine statutory exemptions or two law enforcement record exclusions. A consolidated list of such records is on Office of Freedom of Information site and the U.S. Air Force FOIA site. Currently the law allows 20 working days to process a FOIA request upon receipt of the request in the FOIA office.
Who can Submit a Request
Members of the public, including foreign citizens, military and civilian personnel acting as private citizens, organizations and businesses, and individual members of the Congress for themselves or constituents, may request records in writing. It is important to remember that the Freedom of Information Act applies only to federal agencies. It does not create a right of access to records held by Congress, the courts, state or local government agencies, or by private businesses or individuals. Each state has its own public access laws that should by consulted for access to state and local records.
Fees for Processing
The FOIA allows fee charges based on the requester's category. There are three categories:
(pay search, review, and reproduction fees);
educational, non-commercial scientific institution and news media
(pay reproduction fees; first 100 pages provided at no cost); and
(pay search and reproduction fees; first two hours search and 100 pages provided at no cost).
Release of email addresses
Air Force policy is to deny requests for lists of e-mail addresses (both personal and organizational) using FOIA exemption (b)(6). We rely on FOIA exemption (b)(6) when denying lists of personal e-mail addresses. High (b)(2) is no longer to be used to protect internal information, the disclosure of which would risk circumvention of a statute or agency regulation. Because DOD e-mail systems are to be used only for official and authorized purposes, the addresses are considered primarily internal. The regulations at issue that could be circumvented include DOD and AF regulations that require us to limit use of e-mail to authorized purposes, and to protect the security of your computer and information systems. Exemption (b)(6) protects information that if released would permit a clearly unwarranted invasion of personal privacy. This does not prohibit an organization from including a single e-mail address on a Web page of in correspondence.
How to make a request
FOIA requests can be submitted and tracked online through the AF EFOIA Public Access Link (PAL) click
. However, before submitting a request, see if the records are available to the public in the AF FOIA Reading Room in the PAL or sites listed under "FOIA Links." If you don't know which FOIA Requester Service Center location should conduct the search, click
. If unknown, choose Headquarter Air Force.
For mailing, e-mailing, or faxing a request for Edwards Air Force Base records, use the "FOIA Contacts" information and ensure the request and envelope are marked "FOIA."
Regardless of the submission method, describe the requested records as specifically as possible to narrow the search. Furnish any facts or clues about the time, place, persons, events, subjects, contract number, or other details that will help decide where to search and determine what records pertain to your request. You must also provide the fee amount you are willing to pay for administrative processing. See "Fees for Processing FOIA Requests." These steps will save you and the government time and money.
NOTE: Requesters, to include military and all federal civilian employees, should not use government equipment, supplies, stationery, postage, telephones, or official mail channels to make FOIA or Privacy Act requests.
Requests should be made through personal equipment or postal service.
FOIA requesters who have questions concerning the processing of their request that cannot be resolved by the Edwards AFB FOIA office, should contact the AFMC FOIA Requester Service Center at (937) 257-1665 or e-mail afmc.
. If you are not satisfied with their response, contact the AF FOIA Public Liaison at (202) 404-1393 or e-mail af.
Submitting Privacy Requests
If you or your designated representative are seeking records on yourself and the record is maintained/retrieved by your name or other identifier, this is a Privacy Act request. To obtain access to your records, follow the guidance in AF Instruction 33-332, AF Privacy Act Program, click here and DOD Regulation 5400.11, DoD Privacy Act Program, click here. All written requests must be mailed or faxed directly to the appropriate Privacy Act systems manager identified in the system of records notice or the appropriate Requester Service Center, click
. For more information on the Privacy Act, click
FOIA Requester Service Center
15 N. Muroc Dr.
Edwards AFB, CA 93524-2200
Phone: (661) 277-3015
Fax: (661) 277-4564
AF Reading Room
AF FOIA Handbook
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E-FOIA Request Form
DOJ FOIA Guide
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Air Force Privacy Act
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