[Federal Register Volume 79, Number 128 (Thursday, July 3, 2014)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 37927-37928]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2014-14194]

Rules and Regulations
                                                Federal Register

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Federal Register / Vol. 79, No. 128 / Thursday, July 3, 2014 / Rules 
and Regulations

[[Page 37927]]


5 CFR Part 9301

Freedom of Information Act and Privacy Act Procedures

AGENCY: Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction.

ACTION: Interim final rule.


SUMMARY: Notice is hereby given that the Special Inspector General for 
Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR) proposes to amend its Privacy Act 
regulation exempting portions of an existing system of records from 
certain provisions of the Privacy Act of 1974, as amended. Certain 
portions of the Investigations Records, SIGAR-08, system of records 
contain criminal investigation records, investigatory material for law 
enforcement purposes, confidential source information and are proposed 
to be exempted under the Privacy Act.

DATES: This interim final rule is effective July 3, 2014. Written 
comments may be submitted by August 4, 2014.

ADDRESSES: Any persons interested in commenting on the proposed 
exemptions to SIGAR's system of records may do so by writing to Adam 
Weaver, Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction, 2530 
Crystal Drive, Arlington, VA 22202-3934. Comments will be made 
available for inspection up written request. SIGAR will make such 
comments available for public inspection in the Office of Privacy, 
Records, and Disclosure, 9th Floor, 1550 Crystal Drive, Arlington, VA 
22202, on official business days between the hours of 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. 
Eastern time. You can make an appointment to inspect comments by 
telephoning (703) 545-6000. All comments, including attachments and 
other supporting materials, received are part of the public record and 
subject to public disclosure. You should submit only information that 
you wish to make available publicly.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Shamelle Tarver, Special Inspector 
General for Afghanistan Reconstruction, 2530 Crystal Drive, Arlington, 
VA 22202-3934, (703) 545-6046.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: On January 28, 2008, the President signed 
into law the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2008 
(Pub. L. 110-181), which created SIGAR. The Freedom of Information Act 
(FOIA), the Privacy Act of 1974, as amended (5 U.S.C. 522a) (PA), and 
certain portions of the Ethics in Government Act and Executive Order 
12958, as amended, provide for access by the public to records of 
executive branch agencies, subject to certain restrictions and 
exemptions. In order to establish procedures to facilitate public 
interaction with SIGAR, 5 CFR part 9301 sets forth the SIGAR's 
regulations implementing the access provisions of those statutes and 
the Executive Order. The modification to the system, Investigations 
Records, SIGAR-08, will support the vetting of directors, officers, or 
other employees of organizations who apply for U.S. Government 
contracts, grants, cooperative agreements, or other funding. The 
information collected from these organizations and individuals is 
specifically used to conduct screening to ensure that U.S. Government 
funds are not used to provide support to entities or individuals deemed 
to be a risk to U.S. national security interests. The records may 
contain criminal investigation records, investigatory material for law 
enforcement purposes, and confidential source information. SIGAR 
proposes to amend 5 CFR part 9301 to exempt portions of the 
Investigations Records system of records from subsections (c)(3) and 
(4), (d), (e)(1), (2), and (3), (e)(4)(G), (H), and (I), (e)(5) and 
(8), (f), (g), and (h) of the Privacy Act of 1974, as amended (5 U.S.C. 
552a), pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 552a (j)(2) and from subsections (c)(3), 
(d), (e)(1), (e)(4)(G), (H), and (I), and (f) of the Privacy Act 
pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 552a (k)(1), (k)(2), and (k)(5).

II. The Interim Final Rule

    This interim final rule establishes exemptions to SIGAR's existing 
regulations implementing the provisions of the FOIA (5 U.S.C. 552) and 
the PA. The provisions of this subpart shall apply to all components of 
SIGAR. The FOIA provides for the disclosure of agency records and 
information to the public, unless that information is exempted under 
delineated statutory exemptions under the FOIA. The Privacy Act serves 
to safeguard public interest in informational privacy by delineating 
the duties and responsibilities of federal agencies that collect, 
store, and disseminate personal information about individuals. The 
procedures established here are intended to ensure that SIGAR fully 
satisfies its responsibility to the public to disclose agency 
information while simultaneously safeguarding individual privacy.
    The Privacy Act serves to balance the Government's need to maintain 
information about individuals with the rights of individuals to be 
protected against unwarranted invasions of their privacy stemming from 
federal agencies' collection, maintenance, use, and disclosure of 
personal information about them. Agencies are required to issue 
regulations outlining the agency's rules and procedures for 
implementation of the Privacy Act and its provisions within the agency. 
This includes procedures on how individuals may request access to 
information about themselves, request amendment or correction of those 
records, and request an accounting of disclosures of their records by 

Procedural Requirements

    This Interim Final rule amends SIGAR's implementing the FOIA and 
the Privacy Act to facilitate the interaction of the public with SIGAR. 
SIGAR's policy of disclosure follows the Presidential Memorandum of 
January 21, 2009, ``Transparency and Openness,'' 74 FR 4685, and the 
Attorney General's March 19, 2009 FOIA policy guidance, advising 
Federal agencies to apply a presumption of disclosure in FOIA decision 
making. This Interim Final Rule parallels the procedures currently used 
by other agencies to implement the FOIA and the Privacy Act. SIGAR has 
determined that good cause exists to publish this amendment to its FOIA 
and Privacy Act regulations as an interim final rule. This amendment 
clarifies exemptions regarding the public's access to

[[Page 37928]]

information about SIGAR and about themselves maintained by SIGAR. The 
absence of well-defined exemptions to the Privacy Act regulations could 
impair the confidentiality and privacy rights of those who submit 
sensitive information to SIGAR as well as the ability of SIGAR to use 
that information to carry out its statutory mission. SIGAR has 
determined that this interim rule should be issued without a delayed 
effective date pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 553(d)(3).
    Finally, notice of proposed rulemaking is not required, because the 
provisions of the Regulatory Flexibility Act (5 U.S.C. Chapter 6) do 
not apply. It has been determined that this rulemaking is not a 
significant regulatory action for the purposes of Executive Order 
12866. Accordingly, a regulatory impact analysis is not required.

    Dated: June 6, 2014.
John F. Sopko,
Inspector General.

List of Subjects in 5 CFR Part 9301

    Administrative practice and procedure, Freedom of information, 

Authority and Issuance

    For the reasons set forth above, SIGAR amends 5 CFR part 9301 as 


1. The authority citation for part 9301 continues to read as follows:

    Authority:  5 U.S.C. 552; Pub. L. 110-175, 121 Stat. 2524 
(2007); 5 U.S.C. 301 and 552; Exec. Order 12600, 52 FR 23781, 3 CFR, 
1987 Comp., p. 235; Exec. Order No. 13392, 70 FR 75373-75377, 3 CFR, 
2006 Comp., pp. 216-200.

2. Section 9301.20 is added to read as follows:

Sec.  9301.20  Exemptions.

    Systems of records maintained by SIGAR are authorized to be 
exempted from certain provisions of the Privacy Act under the general 
and specific exemptions set forth in the Act. In utilizing these 
exemptions, SIGAR is exempting only those portions of systems that are 
necessary for the proper functioning of SIGAR and that are consistent 
with the Privacy Act. Where compliance would not appear to interfere 
with or adversely affect the law enforcement process, and/or where it 
may be appropriate to permit individuals to contest the accuracy of the 
information collected, e.g., public source materials, the applicable 
exemption may be waived, either partially or totally, by SIGAR, in the 
sole discretion of SIGAR, as appropriate.
    (a) General exemptions. (1) Individuals may not have access to 
records maintained by SIGAR that were provided by another agency that 
has determined by regulation that such information is subject to 
general exemption under 5 U.S.C. 552a(j)(1). If such exempt records are 
the subject of an access request, SIGAR will advise the requester of 
their existence and of the name and address of the source agency, 
unless that information is itself exempt from disclosure.
    (2) The systems of records maintained by the Investigations 
Directorate (SIGAR-08), are subject to general exemption under 5 U.S.C. 
552a(j)(2). All records contained in record system SIGAR-08, 
Investigations Records, are exempt from all provisions of the Privacy 
Act except sections (b), (c)(1) and (2), (e)(4)(A) through (F), (e)(6), 
(7), (9), (10), and (11), and (i) to the extent to which they meet the 
criteria of section (j)(2). These exemptions are necessary to ensure 
the effectiveness of the investigative, judicial, and protective 
processes. These exemptions are necessary to ensure the proper 
functions of the law enforcement activity, to protect confidential 
sources of information, to fulfill promises of confidentiality, to 
prevent interference with the enforcement of criminal laws, to avoid 
the disclosure of investigative techniques, to avoid the endangering of 
the life and safety of any individual, to avoid premature disclosure of 
the knowledge of potential criminal activity and the evidentiary bases 
of possible enforcement actions, and to maintain the integrity of the 
law enforcement process.
    (3) The systems of records maintained by the Investigations 
Directorate (SIGAR-08) are exempted from 5 U.S.C. 552a (c)(3), (d), 
(e)(1), (e)(4)(G), (H), and (I), and (f) pursuant to the provisions of 
5 U.S.C. 552a(k)(1), (2), and (5). These exemptions are necessary to 
protect material required to be kept secret in the interest of national 
defense and foreign policy; to prevent individuals that are the subject 
of investigation from frustrating the investigatory process; to ensure 
the proper functioning and integrity of law enforcement activities; to 
prevent disclosure of investigative techniques; to maintain the 
confidence of foreign governments in the integrity of the procedures 
under which privileged or confidential information may be provided; to 
fulfill commitments made to sources to protect their identities and the 
confidentiality of information and to avoid endangering these sources 
and law enforcement personnel; and to ensure the proper functioning of 
the investigatory process, to ensure effective determination of 
suitability, eligibility, and qualification for employment and to 
protect the confidentiality of sources of information.
    (b) [Reserved]

[FR Doc. 2014-14194 Filed 7-2-14; 8:45 am]