Putting TRAC to Work
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August 25, 2015

Court upholds broad FOIA fee exemption for media & groups
By Josh Gerstein

POLITICO reported earlier this year on the Department of Homeland Security's effort to deny news media status to the Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse, a well-respected Syracuse University-affiliated organization with a history of analyzing large government data sets in reports that often generate coverage in newspapers and other media outlets. DHS appeared to have rejected the organization's fee waiver for an immigration-related request because it sought too much data. However, last month, a federal district court judge ruled that DHS' actions were at odds with prevailing law. "While [immigration officials] might object to the breadth of TRACís FOIA request and question the originality and accuracy of its research reports, denying it preferred requester status is not the way to handle those concerns," Judge Chris Cooper wrote.

Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse, Syracuse University
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