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laboratories. It manages the research
information program of the Office. It
provides operating control of the re-
search grants review program.

(c) Office of Research. The Office of
Research, under the supervision of the
Deputy Assistant Administrator for Re-
search, is responsible for planning, de-
veloping, implementing, coordinating,
and evaluating a comprehensive Agency
research program, utilizing both internal
and extramural capabilities, to serve as
a basis for achieving maximum effective-
ness in environmental protection and to
provide a sound scientific basis for the
Agency's program operations. The Office
assures that research goals and relative
priorities are appropriately identified
and pursued. The Office establishes
specific research requirements for the
overall in-house, grant, and contract
programs responsive to the needs of
Agency operating programs and activi-
ties. It provides technical direction of
Agency laboratory staffs in their conduct
of research projects. It assists the pro-
gram operating offices in assuring that
research results are translated into op-
erational solutions to environmental
problems. The Office coordinates the
Agency research program with environ-
mental research programs of other gov-
ernmental agencies, industry, universi-
ties, and other private and public insti-
tutions, and provides for international
research programs and coordination.

Subpart C-EPA Field Installations

§ 1.41 Regional offices.

Regional offices are headed by Re-

gional Administrators who are respon-

sible to the Administrator for the execu-

tion of the regional programs of the

Agency within the boundaries of their

regions. The Regional Administrators

serve as the Administrator's principal

representatives in the regions in contacts

and relationships with Federal, State,

interstate and local agencies, industry,

academic institutions, and other public

and private groups. They are responsible

for accomplishing national program ob-

jectives within their regions as estab-

lished by the Administrator, Deputy Ad-

ministrator, Assistant Administrators,

and heads of Headquarters staff offices.

They develop, propose, and implement

an approved regional program for com-

prehensive and integrated environmental

protection activities.

§ 1.43 National Environmental Research

Centers and the Western Environ-

mental Research Laboratory.

National Environmental Research
Centers and their "satellite" laboratories
and the Western Environmental Re-
search Laboratories are under the super-
vision of the Assistant Administrator for
Research and Monitoring. These instal-
lations and their primary areas of re-
sponsibilities are as follows:

(a) National Environmental Research
Center-Research Triangle Park, N.C.
(health effects research);

(b) National Environmental Research
Center-Cincinnati, Ohio (pollution con-
trol technology and engineering re-
search);

(c) National Environmental Research
Center-Corvallis, Oreg. (ecological sys-
tems research); and

(d) The Western Envronmental Re-
search Laboratory at Las Vegas, Nev.
(radiation effects research).

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(a) EPA will make the fullest possible disclosure of records to the public, consistent with the rights of individuals to privacy, the rights of persons in trade secrets and other information entitled to confidential treatment, and the need for EPA to promote frank internal policy deliberations and to pursue its official activities without undue disruption.

(b) All EPA records shall be available to the public unless they are specifically exempt under this part.

(c) All nonexempt records of EPA shall be made available for public disclosure upon request regardless of whether any justification or need for such records has been shown.

§ 2.102

§ 2.103

[Reserved]

Partial disclosure of records. If a record contains both disclosable and nondisclosable information, the nondisclosable information will be deleted and the disclosable information will be disclosed unless the disclosable portions cannot be reasonably segregated from the other portions in a manner which will allow meaningful information to be disclosed.

§ 2.104 Request for existing records.

(a) Any written request to EPA for existing records shall be deemed to be a request for records pursuant to the Freedom of Information Act, 5 U.S.C. 552, whether or not that statute is mentioned in the request, and shall be governed by the provisions of this part.

(b) All existing EPA records are subject to routine destruction according to standard record retention schedules.

(c) Any written request to EPA for existing records prepared by EPA for routine public distribution, e.g., pamphlets, copies of speeches, press releases, and educational materials, shall be honored. No individual determination under 2.111 is necessary in such cases, since preparation of the records for

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§2.107 Where requests for agency records shall be filed.

A request for records may be filed with the EPA Freedom of Information Officer, A-101, 401 M Street, SW., Washington, D.C. 20460. Should the requestor have reason to believe that the records sought may be located in EPA regional offices, he should transmit his request to the appropriate regional Freedom of Information Office indicated below:

(a) Region I. (Massachusetts, Connecticut, Maine, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Vermont):

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
Freedom of Information Officer

Room 2303

John F. Kennedy Federal Building

Boston, Mass. 02203

(b) Region II. (New Jersey, New York, Puerto Rico, Virgin Islands):

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
Freedom of Information Officer

Room 1005

26 Federal Plaza

New York, NY 10007

(c) Region III. (Delaware, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia, West Virginia, District of Columbia):

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
Freedom of Information Officer
Curtis Building

Sixth and Walnut Streets
Philadelphia, PA 19106

(d) Region IV. (Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee): U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Freedom of Information Officer

Suite 504

1421 Peachtree Street, N.E. Atlanta, GA 30309

(e) Region V. (Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio, Wisconsin): U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Freedom of Information Officer 230 Dearborn Street Chicago, IL 60604

(f) Region VI. (Arkansas, Louisiana, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Texas):

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
Freedom of Information Officer

Suite 1100

1600 Patterson Street

Dallas, TX 75201

(g) Region VII. (Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska):

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
Freedom of Information Officer
1735 Baltimore Avenue

Kansas City, MO 64108

(h) Region VIII. (Colorado, Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Utah, Wyoming):

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
Freedom of Information Officer
Suite 900

1860 Lincoln Street Denver, CO 80203

(i) Region IX. (Arizona, California, Hawaii, Nevada, American Samoa, Guam, Trust Territories of Pacific Islands, Wake Island) :

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
Freedom of Information Officer

100 California Street

San Francisco, CA 94111

(j) Region X. (Alaska, Idaho, Oregon, Washington):

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
Freedom of Information Officer
1200 Sixth Avenue

Seattle, WA 98101

§ 2.108 Form of request.

A request for EPA records shall be in writing, shall reasonably describe the records sought in a way that will permit their identification and location by EPA, but otherwise need not be in any particular form. Where the requestor anticipates that search and duplication fees involved in the request might be substantial, he may wish to consider a prepayment, or include a commitment to pay all fees that may be involved or all fees up to a stated limit (see § 2.120). Placing the term 'Freedom of Information Act Request" on the envelope and letter may well result in a speedier response. § 2.109 Requests which do not reasonably describe records sought.

(a) If the description of the records sought in the request is not a reasonable

description sufficient to allow EPA to identify and locate the requested records, EPA will notify the requestor (by telephone when practicable) that the request cannot be further processed until additional information is furnished.

(b) EPA will make every reasonable effort to assist in the identification and description of records sought, and to assist the requestor in formulating his request. If a request is described in general terms (e.g., all records having to do with a certain area), the EPA office should attempt to communicate with the requestor (by telephone when practicable) with a view toward lessening both the administrative burden of processing a broad request and minimizing the fees payable by the requestor. Such attempts will not be used as a means to discourage requests, but rather as a means to help identify with more specificity the records actually sought.

§ 2.110 Initial action upon receipt of a

request.

(a) Requests received by the Freedom of Information Offices. Each request received by a Freedom of Information Office, whether at EPA Headquarters or at an EPA region, shall be promptly stamped with the date of receipt by that office and assigned a Request Identification Number. The Freedom of Information Office shall promptly forward the request to the EPA office (s) believed to be responsible for maintaining the requested records, retaining a copy of the request. If a request is received by a Freedom of Information Office at an EPA region and the requested records (or some of them) are not maintained by that EPA region, the regional Freedom of Information Office shall promptly furnish a copy of the request to the Headquarters Freedom of Information Office.

(b) Requests received by EPA offices other than Freedom of Information Offices. If any request is received by any EPA office other than a Freedom of Information Office, a copy of the request shall be forwarded immediately to the Headquarters Freedom of Information Office (or, if the receiving office is part of an EPA region, to the regional Freedom of Information Office).

(c) Method of forwarding requests. Requests shall be forwarded under paragraphs (a) and (b) of this section by electronic means (facsimile machine, telephone, etc.).

§ 2.111 Action by office responsible for maintaining requested records.

(a) Whenever an EPA office becomes aware that it has been assigned the responsibility of responding to a request, or whenever such an office becomes aware that EPA has received a request for records which that office maintains or for which that office has responsibility, the office shall:

(1) Locate the records as promptly as possible, or determine that the records are not known to exist, or that they are located at another EPA office, or that they are held by another Federal agency and not by EPA;

(2) Determine which of the records (or portions of records) held by the office may not legally be released, and why;

(3) Determine whether disclosure will be made of requested records which are exempt from mandatory disclosure but which are not required by law or this part to be withheld (see §§ 2.118-2.119), and the reasons for withholding any such records;

(4) Issue an initial determination within the allowed period (see § 2.112), specifying which requested records will be withheld and which will be released (determinations to withhold requested records shall comply with § 2.113).

(b) If any requested records located under paragraph (a) of this section contain business information which is covered by a business confidentiality claim or is the type of information for which business sometimes requests confidential treatment, or is or may be required by law to be held in confidence for reasons of business confidentiality, the EPA office in possession of such records shall comply with applicable provisions of Subpart B of this part.

(c) Whenever an EPA office learns that some or all of the requested records are not in that office's possession but are or may be in the possession of some other EPA office or some other Federal agency, that office shall immediately so inform the Headquarters or regional

Freedom of Information Office which is monitoring the request.

(d) If at any time it appears to an EPA office that performance of further search work would cause fees to be incurred in excess of those which the requestor has paid or agreed to pay (or $25.00 if no fee has been agreed upon), action shall be taken to obtain or assure payment (see § 2.120), to assist in the reformulation of the request (see § 2.109), or both.

§ 2.112 Time allowed for issuance of initial determination.

(a) Except as otherwise provided in this section, not later than the tenth working day after the date of receipt by a Freedom of Information Office of a request for records, the EPA office responsible for responding to the request shall issue a written determination to the requestor stating which of the requested records will, and which will not, be released, and the reason for any denial of a request. (A written determination is not necessary if within that 10-day period all requested records are actually furnished to the requestor.)

(b) The period of 10 working days shall be measured from the date the request is first received and logged in by the Headquarters or regional Freedom of Information Office.

(c) There shall be excluded from the period of 10 working days (or any extension thereof) any time which elapses between the time that a requestor is notified by EPA that his request does not reasonably identify the records sought and the time that the requestor furnishes a reasonable identification (see § 2.109).

(d) There shall be excluded from the period of 10 working days (or any extension thereof) any time which elapses between the time that a requestor is notified by EPA that processing his request will generate chargeable fees in excess of $25.00 (or any higher dollar limit he has established as acceptable), and the time that the requestor makes suitable arrangements for payment of such charges (see § 2.120).

(e) The EPA office taking action under § 2.111, after notifying the appropriate Freedom of Information Office, may extend the basic 10-day period established

under paragraph (a) of this section by a period not to exceed 10 additional working days, by furnishing written notice to the requestor within the basic 10-day period stating the reasons for such extension and the date by which the office expects to be able to issue a determination. The period may be so extended only when absolutely necessary, only for the period required, and only when one or more of the following unusual circumstances require the extension:

(1) There is a need to search for and collect the requested records from field facilities or other establishments that are separate from the office processing the request;

(2) There is a need to search for, collect, and appropriately examine a voluminous amount of separate and distinct records which are demanded in a single request; or

(3) There is a need for consultation, which shall be conducted with all practicable speed, with another agency having a substantial interest in the determination of the request or among two or more components of EPA.

(f) Failure of EPA to issue a determination within the 10-day period or any authorized extension shall constitute final agency action which authorizes the requestor to commence an action in an appropriate Federal district court to obtain the records.

§ 2.113 Initial denials of requests.

(a) An initial denial of a request may be issued only for the following reasons: (1) The record requested is not known to exist;

(2) The record is not in EPA's possession;

(3) The record has been published in the FEDERAL REGISTER or is otherwise published and available for sale.

(4) A statutory provision, provision of this part, or court order requires that the information not be disclosed;

(5) The record is exempt from mandatory disclosure under 5 U.S.C. 552(b) and EPA has decided as a matter of discretion not to release it;

(6) Subpart B of this part requires initial denial because a third person must be consulted in connection with a business confidentiality claim; or

(7) The record is believed to exist in EPA's possession but has not yet been located (see paragraph (h) of this section).

(b) Initial denials of requests may be issued or ordered by those EPA officers or employees occupying positions to which such authority has been delegated or redelegated.

(c) Initial determinations should normally be made by the office which is in possession of, or has responsibility for maintaining, the requested records, and only in unusual cases should it be necessary to refer the matter to higher authorities for issuance of the determination. Initial determinations to deny requests may be issued only by an officer or employee who exercises supervisory authority over the EPA office which possesses or has responsibility for maintaining the requested records.

(d) Each initial determination to deny a request shall be written, signed, and dated, and shall contain a reference to the Request Identification Number.

(e) If the determination to deny a request was directed to be issued by some EPA officer or employee other than the person signing the determination letter, that other person's identity and position shall be stated in the determination letter. If an EPA regulation (e.g., § 2.204) requires that an initial denial determination be issued upon the finding of certain facts, reference shall be made to the regulation and the determination letter shall state the name of the person who made the fact finding.

(f) Each initial determination which denies a request in whole or part shall state that the requestor may appeal the initial denial by mailing or personally delivering an appeal in writing to the address stated in § 2.114 within 30 days of receipt of the determination or within 30 days of the date the requestor last received any records in response to the request, whichever date is later.

(g) An initial determination shall be deemed to be issued at the time the determination letter is placed in EPA mailing channels for first class mailing to the requestor, is delivered to the U.S. Postal Service for mailing, or is personally delivered to the requestor, whichever first occurs.

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