Freedom of Information

To complete Church Publishing’s October 2014 White Paper on Security the company gathered facts from over 200 print, electronic, and/or converted sources including the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s fiscal year ’14 and ’15 “Budget-in-Brief(s),” both listing dissemination of DHS Pursuit Cables as accomplishments. In fact, dating to at least FY 2012 DHS‘s Analysis and Operations Office of Intelligence (I&A) authored information to share with U.S. law-enforcement and a blanket “Intelligence Community.” Yet in promoting accomplishments for FY13, the Department of Homeland Security called these Pursuit Lead Cables. More to the point, search for definition of Pursuit Lead Cable yielded no existence of their process so Church Publishing filed a Freedom of Information request.

In order to acquire greater knowledge of what this organization’s 302-309 million discretionary dollars were being apportioned for the Company delayed production of “White Paper on Security” before determining whether Homeland Security realizes redundant public safety missions at comparable cost to U.S. taxpayers. But emails and telephone calls to the Department’s media inquiry line netted no substantial reply until the Company filed a formal Freedom of Information Act request detailing information sought defining “Pursuit Lead Cable.”

In accordance with the law, acknowledgement of receipt of this request to the Office of Intelligence and Analysis (I&A) filed August 11, 2014 came within thirty days, September 9th. That got posted by the Company so customers waiting for “White Paper on Security” would be aware of delay. That reply re-ordered a more perfect request however three days later the Company also received a letter indicating FOIA Request 2014-IAFO-0246 was in-process after the Company’s President called for clarification whether a “second submission” was in course the means of resubmitting September 11th, 2014.

Two months later, upon hearing nothing further, Church wrote the Officer in charge of IAFO request 0246 until a week’s eve of 90 days after September 9th when a letter dated December 3rd anticipated their 15 December release date. The 15th passed without further obligatory notification then Church was informed December 19th was anticipated. Telephone inquires starting Monday each week answered documents would be ready the coming Friday even following a federal holiday, the 26th. But after several weeks of telephone calls, and no substantial documents beyond DHS’s acknowledgement sent September 12, the Officer in charge cited a “lack of resources” as being a factor in this extended delay.

In fact, by telephone the status of IAFO-o246 had been said to be under review by DHS’s Office of General Counsel. Indicating documents were in-hand, at that time Intelligence and Analysis claimed its plan was to release this information in two halves due to quantity uncovered. Although that could necessitate considerable review in the interest of national security, cabinet-level department Homeland Security employs more than 1,750 lawyers and its General Counsel Stevan Bunnell once testified he’d manage those “in a way that promotes morale, high performance, and efficiency” before the Senate Committee on Homeland Security September 18th, 2013. Church was confident I&A would adhere to its plan and release the information in two parts 50/50, read the Department’s final reply dated January 13, 2015:

Pursuit Lead Cable

Final response FOIA request, Homeland Security Office of Intelligence and Analysis (I&A)

Pursuit Lead Cable

Final response FOIA request, Homeland Security Office of Intelligence and Analysis (I&A), (2/2)

 

 

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