The U.S. House of Representatives March 14 passed legislation to strengthen how federal agencies implement the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA).
Reps. William Lacy Clay, D-MO; Todd Platts, R-PA; and Henry Waxman, D-CA, put together H.R. 1309, which passed by a vote of 308 to 117.
The Senate held a hearing March 15 on similar legislation introduced by Sens. Patrick Leahy, D-VT, and John Cornyn, R-TX. Both the House and Senate versions would impose strong penalties on government agencies for missing FOIA deadlines.
The Congressional action coincided with Sunshine Week, a non-partisan initiative to strengthen government transparency.