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United States

Department of
Agriculture

Animal and
Plant Health
Inspection
Service

Legislative and
Public Affairs

Freedom of
Information

4700 River Road
Unit 50
Riverdale, MD
20737-1232
Safeguarding American Agriculture
APHIS is an agency of USDAs Marketing and Regulatory Programs

An Equal Opportunity Provider and Employer




J anuary 9, 2013

Lisette Garcia, J .D.
Senior Investigator
425 Third St., SW, Ste. 800
Washington, DC 20024

Dear Ms. Garcia:

This is our final response to your May 18, 2012, Freedom of Information Act (FOIA)
request (enclosed). Your request was received in this office on J une 7, 2012, and assigned
case number FOIA 2012-02657. We apologize for the delay of this response.

Agency employees conducted a thorough search of their files and located 54 pages of
documents and three video DVDs which are responsive to your request. However,
information has been withheld under FOIA Exemption 6, 5 U.S.C. 552(b)(6). This
exemption protects information from disclosure when its release would cause a clearly
unwarranted invasion of personal privacy and where such privacy interest outweigh any
public interest which would be advanced by the disclosure of any signatures contained
within the records. From the responsive documents, we have withheld all signatures.

As a threshold matter, Exemption (b)(6) protects not only personnel files and medical files,
but similar files, which are interpreted by courts to cover personal information pertaining
to individuals. In this case, the information protected pertains to a third party individual
and is contained in a similar file. In order to determine whether a document may be
withheld under Exemption 6, an agency must undertake a three-step analysis. First, the
agency must determine whether a significant privacy interest would be compromised by the
disclosure of the record. Second, the agency must determine whether the release of the
document would further the public interest by shedding light on the operations and
activities of the Government. Third, the agency must balance the identified privacy
interests against the public interest in disclosure. Therefore, we have determined that the
privacy interests of the individuals identified, outweighs any minimal public interest in their
identities, and the information has been withheld.

You may appeal our partial denial determination. If you choose to appeal, your appeal
must be in writing and must be received within 45 days of the date of this letter. Please
send to:

Administrator
Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service
Ag Box 3401
Washington, D.C. 20250-3401


Exhibit A
Lisette Garcia, J .D 2
FOIA 02657


If you choose to appeal, please refer to FOIA 12-02657 in your appeal letter and add the
words FOIA Appeal to the front of the envelope. To assist the Administrator in
reviewing your appeal, please provide specific reasons why you believe modification of the
determination is warranted.

Because the cost to process your request is less than $25.00, the fee has been waived. If you
have any questions, please contact Ms. Sophie Lau-Lopez of my staff at (301) 851-4083.

Sincerely,

RSheppard signed for

Tonya G. Woods
Director
Freedom of Information & Privacy Act
Legislative and Public Affairs

Enclosures
Exhibit A
05/17/2012 23:58
2026466190
PAGE 02/04
Judicial
Watcli
12-0265;7
no one
is abm1e tile lcwJ!
May 2012
VIA CER1' MAlL & FAX: (20.2)
FOTA ChiefTxina Porter
U.S. Department of Agriculture
355 E St.j S.W., 10
111
rtoor
Washington, D.C. 20024
Re: FOIA Seel .
Deal' Ms'"Porter:
IP
Pursuant to the Freedom ofinfonnati.on Act (FOIA), 5 U S.C. SS2, Judicial Watch,
Inc., (Judicial Watch) hereby xequest..o;; that the U.S. Departmbnt o (USDA)
produce the following tecords within twenty (20) business dtys: ,
1) All contracts and expense reco1ds related to tl'aining r provided by
Sarmlel Betan.ccs or his finn, Souder, Betances & pf Tll.;
2) All comm1.mications related to training and services J rovided by Samuel Beta.nces
or his firm, Souderj Betances & Associates, ofChica 0} m.; I
3) All records and email ftom the offices of Sect'etru:y Under
Secretary Edward Avalos, AdministTator Greg Parhatn, and Deputy Admh,istrator
Joanne Munno regarding the above-referenced trainifg and
For purposes or this request, the term "reco:rds" lticlubcs any and/or
audio recordin&s of training or provided or f1 cUitated!
or his firm. The time f1amc for this reqt'iest is January 1, 2Q1 O,i through the
present.
1n placing this request, Watch calls your attenti( n to Barack
Obama's January 21,2009 Metnorandum concemittg the Fr edom ortTnformation. Act
which states: l
AU agencies should adopt a presum.ptton i11 f: vor of
disclosure; \11 orcter to renew tbeit commitme t to the
pr.iJ1ciples embodied in FOIA. .. The presumption of .
disclosure should be applied to all decisions involving
FOTA. .

425 Third St., SW, S\1he 800, DC 20024 rei: (202) or 1-HH8593-8442
f"AX; {202) 646"5199 limail: info@JudicialWatch.org {vww.JudiqialWatch.org
Exhibit B
05/17/2012 23:58 2026460190
USDA
May 18, 2012
Freedom of!nformatim1 Act. Pres. Me1n. of January 21, 20oc, 74 Fed.: Reg. 4683.
The men1o fi.u-ther provides that "The Freedom of lnf1rmation 1Act should be
administered with a clear presumption: In the case of doubt,
Nevertheless, jf any responsive record or portion thertof is to be exempt
fi:om production under FOIA, please provide sufficient ide11ffying iu(ormatio11 with
respect to each allegedly exempt .record or portion thereof to allow us 'to as$ess the
propriety oftlte claimed exemption. Vmtghn v. Roser1! 484 F 2d 820 (D.C. Cir. 1973),
cert; denied, 415 U.S. 977 (1974). In addition, any reasonah y segregable porti.Ott ofa
t-espon.sive record must be provided, after redaction of allegedly 111aterial. 5
u.s.c. 552(b). '
Judicial Watch also hereby requests a waiver of both seruch and duplication fees
pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 552(a)(4)(A)(ii)(II) and (a)(4)(A)(iii . Judicial Watch is et'ltitled
to a waiver of search fees 5 U.S.C. 552(a)(4)(A)(ii)(. I) because it is a member of
the news media. Cj. National Security Archive v. of Dafehse, 880 F.2d 1381,
1387 (D.C. Cir. 1989)(defining news media within FOIA cobtext). Judicial Watch has
also been recognized as a member of the news m.edia in FOIA litigation. See, e.g.,
Judicial Watch, Inc. v. U.S. Department of.Justice, 133 F. Supp.2d 52 (D.D.C. 2000);
and, Judfcial Watch, Inc. v. Department o.f'DejeJ'ISfJ) 2006 U.S. Dist. I,EXIS 44003, * 1
(D.D;c. June 28, 2006). Judicial Watch regularly obtains about the
ope1'ations and activities of government thtol.Igh FOIA and ther uses its editorial
skills to tum this informatio11 into di.stlnct works, and publisl es and disseminates these
works to the public. It intends to do likewise with the recordh it 1'ecei,;,es in response to
this request. 1 '
Judicial Watch also is entitled to a complete waiver fbotb fees and
duplication fees pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 552(a)(4)(A)(iii). this provision, records:
shall be furnished without atiY charge or. at a ;
reduced below the fees established under claJse (H) if
disclosure ofthe infonn.alion is in the publiclnterest
because it is likely to contribute significantly to public.
understanding ofthe operations Qr activities f government
and is not primarily in the commercial intere, t of the
requester.
5 U.S.C. 552(a)(4)(A)(lii).
[n addition, ifrecmds are not p1'oduced within twent (20) days, Judicial
Watch is entitled to a waiver of search a.tld duplication. fees: unde1' Section 6(b)
of the OPEN Govel'.nment Act of2007, which amended :FOIA at S u.s.c. 552
(a)(4)(A)(viii).
Pngc 2 of3
PAGE 03/04
Exhibit B
05/17/2012 23:58
USDA
May 18,2012
2026460190 JUDICIAL ..,.L
i
I
I
I
!
Judicial Watch is a educatio l organization, and) by
definition, it has 110 commercial purpose. Judicial Watc.h to the public
about the opemtions attd activities of government> as well as . increa* public
understanding about the importance of ethics and the rule of 1 w in govemment. The
particular records requested herein are sought as pal't of Judicial Watcli's ongoing efforts
to document the operations attd activities of the federal goverhme'pt to edttcate the
public about these operations and activities. Once Judicial the tequested
records, it intends to analyze thern and disseminate the 1'esult of its lysis, as well as
the recotds themselves, as a special written report. Jndicia[ atch Willi also educate the
public via radio programs, Judicial Watch's website
1
attd/or n among other
, outlets. It also will make the records to other ofthci: media or
request. Judicial Watch has a ptovcn abillt to dissethinate h'formation
obta5Jied through FOIA to the public, as demonstrated by its l and
contitming public outreach efforts. j
Given these circun1stances, Judicial Watch is entitled o a public interest fee
waiver of both search costs and duplication costs. Nonethelek in the event our reqnest
for a waiver. of search and/or duplication costs is denied, Juditial Watd.h is willing to pay
up to $350.00 in search and/or dupH.cation costs. requests that it be
contacted before any such costs ate incurred, in order to priontize sear9h and duplication
efforts. l : ;
In an effo1t to facilitate record production within the s dme limit, Judicial
Watch is wUUng to accept doc1.tments in electronic format .pdfs). When
necessary, Judicial Watch wUl also accept the "rolling produdtion" of documents.
Judicial Watch anticipates prompt receipt of the requested do uments *nd a waiver of
both search and duplicatiolJ costs within twent-y (20) business. days. Thank you fot yow:
timely compliance wit.h all applicable laws.
Lisette Garcja., J.D.
Seniol' Investigator
Page 3 of3
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Exhibit B
Exhibit C
Exhibit C
Exhibit C
Exhibit C
Exhibit C
Exhibit C
Exhibit C
Exhibit C
Exhibit C
Exhibit C
Exhibit D
Exhibit D
Exhibit E
Exhibit E