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In his first year of office, Mayor Adrian Fenty‘s administration cranked out a whopping 572 denial letters to Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) filers, a rate more than quadruple—nearly quintuple!—the prior year under his predecessor. Numbers culled by Ward 3 Councilmember Mary Cheh‘s office (as part of her push for reform) indicate the city bureaucracy has never looked back, rejecting a Fenty first-term high of 671 FOIA requests in fiscal year 2008, before dipping slightly to just 664 denials last year (albeit also among a smaller total number of FOIA requests in ’09).
City Desk’s own Jason Cherkis noted the spike at the police level back in January: “Since the departure of the beloved Sgt. Joe Gentile, the police’s FOIA operation appears to be handled by a very mean robot who simply spits out form letter rejections.”
A less boxy breakdown of the raw numbers, as culled by Cheh’s office, based on information currently available online, after the jump:
TOTAL NUMBER OF FOIA REQUESTS FILED
TOTAL NUMBER OF WHOLE DENIALS