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Title 22 Part 1411

Title 22 → Chapter XIV → Subchapter B → Part 1411

Electronic Code of Federal Regulations e-CFR

Title 22 Part 1411

e-CFR data is current as of December 7, 2018

Title 22Chapter XIVSubchapter B → Part 1411


Title 22: Foreign Relations


§1411.1   Purpose and scope.

This part contains the regulations of the Foreign Service Labor Relations Board (the Board), the General Counsel of the Federal Labor Relations Authority (the General Counsel) and the Foreign Service Impasse Disputes Panel (the Panel) providing for public access to information from the Board, the General Counsel or the Panel. These regulations implement the Freedom of Information Act, as amended, 5 U.S.C. 552, and the policy of the Board, the General Counsel and the Panel to disseminate information on matters of interest to the public and to disclose to members of the public on request such information contained in records insofar as is compatible with the discharge of their responsibilities, consistent with applicable law.

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§1411.2   Delegation of authority.

(a) Foreign Service Labor Relations Board/General Counsel of the Federal Labor Relations Authority. Regional Directors of the Federal Labor Relations Authority, the Freedom of Information Officer of the Office of the General Counsel, Washington, DC, and the Solicitor of the Federal Labor Relations Authority are delegated the exclusive authority to act upon all requests for information, documents and records which are received from any person or organization under §1411.4(a).

(b) Foreign Service Impasse Disputes Panel. The Executive Director of the Federal Service Impasses Panel is delegated the exclusive authority to act upon all requests for information, documents and records which are received from any person or organization under §1411.4(b).

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§1411.3   Information policy.

(a) Foreign Service Labor Relations Board/General Counsel of the Federal Labor Relations Authority. (1) It is the policy of the Foreign Service Labor Relations Board and the General Counsel of the Federal Labor Relations Authority to make available for public inspection and copying: (i) Final decisions and orders of the Board and administrative rulings of the General Counsel; (ii) statements of policy and interpretations which have been adopted by the Board or by the General Counsel and are not published in the Federal Register; and (iii) administrative staff manuals and instructions to staff that affect a member of the public (except those establishing internal operating rules, guidelines, and procedures for the investigation, trial, and settlement of cases). Any person may examine and copy items in paragraphs (a)(1) (i) through (iii) of this section at each regional office of the Authority and at the offices of the Authority and the General Counsel, respectively, in Washington, DC, under conditions prescribed by the Board and the General Counsel, respectively, and at reasonable times during normal working hours so long as it does not interfere with the efficient operations of the Authority, the Board and the General Counsel. To the extent required to prevent a clearly unwarranted invasion of personal privacy, identifying details may be deleted and, in each case, the justification for the deletion shall be fully explained in writing.

(2) It is the policy of the Board and the General Counsel to make promptly available for public inspection and copying, upon request by any person, other records where the request reasonably describes such records and otherwise conforms with the rules provided herein.

(b) Foreign Service Impasse Disputes Panel. (1) It is the policy of the Foreign Service Impasse Disputes Panel to make available for public inspection and copying: (i) Procedural determinations of the Panel; (ii) factfinding and arbitration reports; (iii) final decisions and orders of the Panel; (iv) statements of policy and interpretations which have been adopted by the Panel and are not published in the Federal Register; and (v) administrative staff manuals and instructions to staff that affect a member of the public. Any person may examine and copy items in paragraphs (b)(1)(i) through (v) of this section at the offices of the Federal Service Impasses Panel in Washington, DC, under conditions prescribed by the Panel, and at reasonable times during normal working hours so long as it does not interfere with the efficient operations of the Federal Service Impasses Panel and the Panel. To the extent required to prevent a clearly unwarranted invasion of personal privacy, identifying details may be deleted and, in each case, the justification for the deletion shall be fully explained in writing.

(2) It is the policy of the Panel to make promptly available for public inspection and copying, upon request by any person, other records where the request reasonably describes such records and otherwise conforms with the rules provided herein.

(c) The Board, the General Counsel and the Panel shall maintain and make available for public inspection and copying the current indexes and supplements thereto which are required by 5 U.S.C. 552(a)(2) and, as appropriate, a record of the final votes of each member of the Board and of the Panel in every agency proceeding. Any person may examine and copy such document or record of the Board, the General Counsel or the Panel at the offices of the Authority, the General Counsel, or the Federal Service Impasses Panel, as appropriate, in Washington, DC, under conditions prescribed by the Board, the General Counsel or the Panel at reasonable times during normal working hours so long as it does not interfere with the efficient operations of the Authority, the Board, the General Counsel, the Federal Service Impasses Panel, or the Panel.

(d) The Board, the General Counsel or the Panel may decline to disclose any matters exempted from the disclosure requirements in 5 U.S.C. 552(b), particularly those that are:

(1)(i) Specifically authorized under criteria established by an executive order to be kept secret in the interest of national defense or foreign policy and (ii) are in fact properly classified pursuant to such executive order;

(2) Related solely to internal personnel rules and practices of the Authority, the General Counsel or the Federal Service Impasses Panel;

(3) Specifically exempted from disclosure by statute (other than 5 U.S.C. 552(b)): Provided, That such statute:

(i) Requires that the matters be withheld from the public in such a manner as to leave no discretion on the issue; or

(ii) Establishes particular criteria for withholding or refers to particular types of matters to be withheld;

(4) Trade secrets and commercial or financial information obtained from a person and privileged or confidential;

(5) Interagency or intra-agency memoranda or letters which would not be available by law to a party other than an agency in litigation with the agency;

(6) Personnel and medical files and similar files the disclosure of which would constitute a clearly unwarranted invasion of personal privacy; or

(7) Investigatory records compiled for law enforcement purposes, but only to the extent that the production of such records would:

(i) Interfere with an enforcement proceeding;

(ii) Deprive a person of a right to a fair trial or an impartial adjudication;

(iii) Constitute an unwarranted invasion of personal privacy;

(iv) Disclose the identity of a confidential source and, in the case of a record compiled by a criminal law enforcement authority in the course of a criminal investigation, or by an agency conducting a lawful national security intelligence investigation, confidential information furnished only by the confidential source;

(v) Disclose investigative techniques and procedures; or

(vi) Endanger the life or physical safety of law enforcement personnel.

(e)(1) The formal documents constituting the record in a case or proceeding are matters of official record and, until destroyed pursuant to applicable statutory authority, are available to the public for inspection and copying at the appropriate regional office of the Authority, or the offices of the Authority, the General Counsel or the Federal Service Impasses Panel in Washington, DC, as appropriate, under conditions prescribed by the Authority, the General Counsel or the Federal Service Impasses Panel at reasonable times during normal working hours so long as it does not interfere with the efficient operations of the Authority, the General Counsel or the Federal Service Impasses Panel.

(2) The Board, the General Counsel or the Panel, as appropriate, shall certify copies of the formal documents upon request made a reasonable time in advance of need and payment of lawfully prescribed costs.

(f)(1) Copies of forms prescribed by the Board for the filing of charges and petitions may be obtained without charge from any regional office of the Authority.

(2) Copies of forms prescribed by the Panel for the filing of requests may be obtained without charge from the offices of the Federal Service Impasses Panel in Washington, DC.

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§1411.4   Procedure for obtaining information.

(a) Foreign Service Labor Relations Board/General Counsel of the Federal Labor Relations Authority. Any person who desires to inspect or copy any records, documents or other information of the Board or the General Counsel, covered by this part, other than those specified in paragraphs (a) (1) and (c) of §1411.3, shall submit a written request to that effect as follows:

(1) If the request is for records, documents or other information in a regional office of the Authority, it should be made to the appropriate Regional Director;

(2) If the request is for records, documents or other information in the Office of the General Counsel and located in Washington, DC, it should be made to the Freedom of Information Officer, Office of the General Counsel, Washington, DC; and

(3) If the request is for records, documents or other information in the offices of the Authority in Washington, DC, it should be made to the Solicitor of the Authority, Washington, DC.

(b) Foreign Service Impasse Disputes Panel. Any person who desires to inspect or copy any records, documents or other information of the Panel covered by this part, other than those specified in paragraphs (b) (1) and (c) of §1411.3, shall submit a written request to that effect to the Executive Director, Federal Service Impasses Panel, Washington, DC.

(c) All requests under this part should be clearly and prominently identified as a request for information under the Freedom of Information Act and, if submitted by mail or otherwise submitted in an envelope or other cover, should be clearly identified as such on the envelope or other cover. If a request does not comply with the provisions of this paragraph, it shall not be deemed received by the appropriate Regional Director, the Freedom of Information Officer of the Office of the General Counsel, the Solicitor of the Authority, or the Executive Director of the Federal Service Impasses Panel, as appropriate, until the time it is actually received by such person.

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§1411.5   Identification of information requested.

(a) Each request under this part should reasonbaly describe the records being sought in a way that they can be identified and located. A request should include all pertinent details that will help identify the records sought.

(b) If the description is insufficient, the officer processing the request will so notify the person making the request and indicate the additional information needed. Every reasonable effort shall be made to assist in the identification and location of the record sought.

(c) Upon receipt of a request for records, the appropriate Regional Director, the Freedom of Information Officer of the Office of the General Counsel, the Solicitor of the Authority, or the Executive Director of the Federal Service Impasses Panel, as appropriate, shall enter it in a public log. The log shall state the date and time received, the name and address of the person making the request, the nature of the records requested, the action taken on the request, the date of the determination letter sent pursuant to paragraphs (b) and (c) of §1411.6, the date(s) any records are subsequently furnished, the number of staff-hours and grade levels of persons who spent time responding to the request, and the payment requested and received.

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§1411.6   Time limits for processing requests.

(a) All time limits established pursuant to this section shall begin as of the time at which a request for records is logged in by the appropriate Regional Director, the Freedom of Information Officer of the Office of the General Counsel, the Solicitor of the Authority, or the Executive Director of the Federal Service Impasses Panel, as appropriate, processing the request pursuant to paragraph (c) of §1411.5. An oral request for records shall not begin any time requirement. A written request for records sent to other than the appropriate officer will be forwarded to that officer by the receiving officer, but in that event the applicable time limit for response set forth in paragraph (b) of this section shall begin upon the request being logged in as required by paragraph (c) of §1411.5.

(b) Except as provided in §1411.8, the appropriate Regional Director, the Freedom of Information Officer of the Office of the General Council, the Solicitor of the Authority, or the Executive Director of the Federal Service Impasses Panel, as appropriate, shall, within ten (10) working days following receipt of the request, respond in writing to the requester, determining whether, or the extent to which, the request shall be complied with.

(1) If all the records requested have been located and a final determination has been made with respect to disclosure of all of the records requested, the response shall so state.

(2) If all of the records have not been located or a final determination has not been made with respect to disclosure of all the records requested, the response shall state the extent to which the records involved shall be disclosed pursuant to the rules established in this part.

(3) If the request is expected to involve an assessed fee in excess of $25.00, the response shall specify or estimate the fee involved and shall require prepayment of any charges in accordance with the provisions of paragraph (a) of §1411.10 before the records are made available.

(4) Whenever possible, the response relating to a request for records that involves a fee of less than $25.00 shall be accompanied by the requested records. Where this is not possible, the records shall be forwarded as soon as possible thereafter, consistent with other obligations of the Board, the General Counsel or the Panel.

(c) If any request for records is denied in whole or in part, the response required by paragraph (b) of this section shall notify the requester of the denial. Such denial shall specify the reason therefor, set forth the name and title or position of the person responsible for the denial, and notify the person making the request of the right to appeal the denial under the provisions of §1411.7.

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§1411.7   Appeal from denial of request.

(a) Foreign Service Labor Relations Board/General Counsel of the Federal Labor Relations Authority. (1) Whenever any request for records is denied, a written appeal may be filed within thirty (30) days after the requester receives notification that the request has been denied or after the requester receives any records being made available, in the event of partial denial. If the denial was made by a Regional Director or by the Freedom of Information Officer of the Office of the General Counsel, the appeal shall be filed with the General Counsel in Washington, DC. If the denial was made by the Solicitor of the Authority, the appeal shall be filed with the Chairperson of the Board in Washington, DC.

(2) The Chairperson of the Board or the General Counsel, as appropriate, shall, within twenty (20) working days from the time of receipt of the appeal, except as provided in §1411.8, make a determination on the appeal and respond in writing to the requester, determining whether, or the extent to which, the request shall be complied with.

(i) If the determination is to comply with the request and the request is expected to involve an assessed fee in excess of $25.00, the determination shall specify or estimate the fee involved and shall require prepayment of any charges due in accordance with the provisions of paragraph (a) of §1411.10 before the records are made available.

(ii) Whenever possible, the determination relating to a request for records that involves a fee of less than $25.00 shall be accompanied by the requested records. Where this is not possible, the records shall be forwarded as soon as possible thereafter, consistent with other obligations of the Board or the General Counsel.

(b) Foreign Service Impasse Disputes Panel. (1) Whenever any request for records is denied by the Executive Director of the Federal Service Impasses Panel, a written appeal may be filed with the Chairperson of the Panel within thirty (30) days after the requester receives notification that the request has been denied or after the requester receives any records being made available, in the event of partial denial.

(2) The Chairperson of the Panel, within twenty (20) working days from the time of receipt of the appeal, except as provided in §1411.8, shall make a determination on the appeal and respond in writing to the requester, determining whether, or the extent to which, the request shall be complied with.

(i) If the determination is to comply with the request and the request is expected to involve an assessed fee in excess of $25.00, the determination shall specify or estimate the fee involved and shall require prepayment of any charges due in accordance with the provisions of paragraph (a) of §1411.10 before the records are made available.

(ii) Whenever possible, the determination relating to a request for records that involves a fee of less than $25.00 shall be accompanied by the requested records. Where this is not possible, the records shall be forwarded as soon as possible thereafter, consistent with other obligations of the Panel.

(c) If on appeal the denial of the request for records is upheld in whole or in part by the Chairperson of the Board, the General Counsel, or the Chairperson of the Panel, as appropriate, the person making the request shall be notified of the reasons for the determination, the name and title or position of the person responsible for the denial, and the provisions for judicial review of that determination under 5 U.S.C. 552(a)(4). Even though no appeal is filed from a denial in whole or in part of a request for records by the person making the request, the Chairperson of the Board, the General Counsel or the Chairperson of the Panel, as appropriate, may, without regard to the time limit for filing of an appeal, sua sponte initiate consideration of a denial under this appeal procedure by written notification to the person making the request. In such event, the time limit for making the determination shall commence with the issuance of such notification.

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§1411.8   Extension of time limits.

In unusual circumstances as specified in this section, the time limits prescribed with respect to initial determinations or determinations on appeal may be extended by written notice from the officer handling the request (either initial or on appeal) to the person making such request setting forth the reasons for such extension and the date on which a determination is expected to be dispatched. No such notice shall specify a date that would result in a total extension of more than ten (10) working days. As used in this section, “unusual circumstances” means, but only to the extent reasonably necessary to the proper processing of the particular request:

(a) The need to search for and collect the requested records from field facilities or other establishments that are separate from the office processing the request;

(b) The need to search for, collect and appropriately examine a voluminous amount of separate and distinct records which are demanded in a single request; or

(c) The need for consultation, which shall be conducted with all practicable speed, with another agency having a substantial interest in the determination of the request or among two or more components of the agency having substantial subject matter interest therein.

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§1411.9   Effect of failure to meet time limits.

Failure by the Board, the General Counsel or the Federal Service Impasses Panel either to deny or grant any request under this part within the time limits prescribed by the Freedom of Information Act, as amended, 5 U.S.C. 552, and these regulations shall be deemed to be an exhaustion of the administrative remedies available to the person making this request.

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§1411.10   Fees.

Persons requesting records from the Board, the General Counsel or the Panel shall be subject to a charge of fees for the direct cost of document search and duplication in accordance with the following schedules, procedures and conditions:

(a) The following fees shall be charged for disclosure of any record pursuant to this part:

(1) Copying of records. Ten cents per copy of each page.

(2) Clerical searches. $1.25 for each one-quarter hour spent by clerical personnel searching for and producing a requested record, including time spent copying any record.

(3) Nonclerical searches. $2.50 for each one-quarter hour spent by professional or managerial personnel searching for and producing a requested record, including time spent copying any record.

(4) Forwarding material to destination. Postage, insurance and special fees will be charged on an actual cost basis.

(b) All charges may be waived or reduced whenever it is in the public interest to do so.

(c) Requests for copies of transcripts of hearings should be made to the official hearing reporter. However, a person may request a copy of a transcript of a hearing from the Board, the Panel or the General Counsel, as appropriate. In such instance, the Board, the Panel or the General Counsel, as appropriate, may, by agreement with the person making the request, make arrangements with commercial firms for required services to be charged directly to the requester.

(d) No charge shall be made for the time spent in resolving legal or policy issues or in examining records for the purpose of deleting nondisclosable portions thereof.

(e) Payment of fees shall be made by check or money order payable to the U.S. Treasury.

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§1411.11   Compliance with subpoenas.

No member of the Board or the Panel, or the General Counsel, or employee of the Authority, the Federal Service Impasses Panel, or the General Counsel shall produce or present any files, documents, reports, memoranda, or records of the Board, the Panel or the General Counsel, or testify in behalf of any party to any cause pending in any arbitration or in any court or before the Board or the Panel, or any other board, commission, or administrative agency of the United States, territory, or the District of Columbia with respect to any information, facts, or other matter to their knowledge in their official capacity or with respect to the contents of any files, documents, reports, memoranda, or records of the Board, the Panel or the General Counsel, whether in answer to a subpoena, subpoena duces tecum, or otherwise, without the written consent of the Board, the Panel or the General Counsel, as appropriate. Whenever any subpoena, the purpose for which is to adduce testimony or require the production of records as described in this section, shall have been served on any member of the Board or of the Panel or employee of the Authority, the Federal Service Impasses Panel or the General Counsel, such person will, unless otherwise expressly directed by the Board, the Panel or the General Counsel, as appropriate, and as provided by law, move pursuant to the applicable procedure to have such subpoena invalidated on the ground that the evidence sought is privileged against disclosure by this rule.

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§1411.12   Annual report.

On or before March 1 of each calendar year, the Executive Director of the Authority shall submit a report of the activities of the Board, the General Counsel and the Panel with regard to public information requests during the preceding calendar year to the Speaker of the House of Representatives and the President of the Senate for referral to the appropriate committees of the Congress. The report shall include for such calendar year all information required by 5 U.S.C. 552(d) and such other information as indicates the efforts of the Board, the General Counsel and the Panel to administer fully the provisions of the Freedom of Information Act, as amended.

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