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Ctr. for Pub. Integrity v. Dep't of Energy, No. 17-286, 2019 WL 3083337 (D.D.C. July 15, 2019) (Kelly, J.)


Ctr. for Pub. Integrity v. Dep't of Energy, No. 17-286, 2019 WL 3083337 (D.D.C. July 15, 2019) (Kelly, J.)

Re:  Request for plans and reports from 2006 to 2011, as well as other documents, for several nuclear sites and laboratories

Disposition:  Denying defendant's motion for summary judgment; denying plaintiff's motion for summary judgment

  • Exemption 4:  "Because the pending motions were submitted before the Supreme Court handed down the [Food Marketing Inst. v. Argus Leader Media] decision, the Court will deny both without prejudice as to the claims addressing Exemption 4 and allow the parties to file renewed motions."
  • Exemption 5, "Inter-Agency or intra-Agency" Threshold Requirement:  "Based on the existing record, the Court has insufficient information to determine whether, or to what extent, the consultant corollary applies to the material withheld from the performance evaluations and self-assessment reports."  "On the one hand, Plaintiff does not contest that the Department solicited the evaluations and reports from the contractors, who were contractually obligated to prepare and submit them."  "On the other hand, the Supreme Court has emphasized that the corollary applies only if 'the consultant does not represent its own interest, or the interest of any other client, when it advises the agency that hires it.'"  "And the agency declarations submitted by Defendant provide little to no information on whether the contractors had an interest in the outcome of whatever Department decisions flowed from their evaluations and reports."
Court Decision Topic(s)
District Court opinions
Exemption 4
Exemption 5
Exemption 5, Inter-Agency or Intra-Agency Threshold Requirement
Updated January 7, 2022