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FOIA

President Lyndon Johnson signed the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) into law July 4, 1966. Since then, Congress has amended it three times: 1974, 1986 and 1996. FOIA exists to empower the public with information and to encourage transparency in government. As a responsible steward of appropriated federal dollars, NeighborWorks America is committed to fulfilling its responsibilities under FOIA.
 
While NeighborWorks America is not an agency of the U.S. government, it is subject to FOIA by its enabling legislation. When Congress chartered NeighborWorks America in 1978, it specifically declared that "the Corporation shall be subject to the provisions of section 552 of title 5, United States Code 42 USC §8103(h)." FOIA requests to NeighborWorks America under FOIA must be submitted in writing. Both the request and the envelope (if applicable) should be clearly marked "Freedom of Information Act Request."

NeighborWorks America provides information in three different ways:
  • Federal Register — Meeting announcements for NeighborWorks America's board of directors are published in the Federal Register and on our board meetings page.
  • Virtual reading room — The following materials are made available in our virtual reading room, where applicable:
    • Final opinions and orders issued in case adjudications.
    • Statements on policies or interpretations.
    • Administrative staff manuals and instructions to staff that affect a member of the public.
    • Copies of records released in response to FOIA requests for which there will likely be multiple future requests.
    • An index of such records.
    • Portions or all of any virtual reading room material may be withheld if exempt from disclosure under FOIA.
  • FOIA document requests — If you seek information related to any other organizational record, you must request it via a formal FOIA submission (see below). 
The request may be submitted in one of two ways: 
 
  1. A traditional letter addressed to: 
    Greg Sharma-Holt, Associate Counsel and Chief FOIA Officer
    Office of the General Counsel
    NeighborWorks America
    999 N. Capitol St. NE, Suite 900
    Washington, DC 20002
     
  2. An email to FOIA@nw.org.

FOIA Guidelines

FOIA requests related to investigations or reviews by NeighborWorks America's internal auditor should be submitted using the process described above and the guidelines listed below. Reports of the internal auditor are available in our virtual reading room.

Below, we provide information on how NeighborWorks America operates and details on making a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request. 

 

read more
In keeping with our desire for transparency and accountability, we have made a number of reports available to the public. Visit our reading room to read the documents
FOIA exists to empower the public with information and to encourage transparency in government.  As a responsible steward of appropriated federal dollars, NeighborWorks America is committed to fulfilling its responsibilities under FOIA.

NeighborWorks America provides information in three different ways:
  1. Federal register
  2. Virtual reading room
  3. FOIA requests
A FOIA document request allows members of the public to request records that are not already available on the NeighborWorks America website or in our virtual reading room.  

NeighborWorks America will produce any and all documents related to a FOIA request that can be located with reasonable time and effort. However, FOIA provides exemptions for certain protected material; if any of these apply to a requested record, it will be withheld. 

If you are interested in submitting a FOIA request to us, please read through our guidelines below.
For more information, contact our FOIA officer

Overview of NeighborWorks America

Neighborhood Reinvestment Corporation (doing business as NeighborWorks America) is a national nonprofit organization created by Congress in 1978 to provide financial support, technical assistance and training for community-based revitalization efforts. We support and strengthen NeighborWorks network organizations by providing training, technical assistance, funding and organizational assessment.

NeighborWorks America was created by Congress in 1978 to "revitalize older urban neighborhoods by mobilizing public, private and community resources at the neighborhood level." Today, NeighborWorks America supports nearly 250 organizations in rural, urban and suburban areas as they revitalize their communities.

The NeighborWorks network consists of nearly 250 independent, community-based nonprofit organizations working to revitalize urban, suburban and rural communities in all 50 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico by mobilizing thousands of residents, business people, government officials and other partners.

NeighborWorks America works with several specialized capital corporations to build partnerships, develop loan products and support financing vehicles that expand affordable housing opportunities in communities served by local member organizations.

FOIA Document Request

A FOIA document request allows members of the public to request records that are not already available on the NeighborWorks America's website or in our virtual reading room. The presumption is that NeighborWorks America will produce any and all documents related to a FOIA request that can be located with reasonable time and effort. However, FOIA provides exemptions for certain protected material; if any of these apply to a requested record, it will be withheld. 
 

How to Make a FOIA Request

A member of the public may submit a FOIA document request that:
  • Is in writing.
  • Is clearly marked "FOIA Request."
  • Reasonably describes the information sought, so that employees familiar with the subject can locate appropriate records with reasonable time and effort.
  • Is emailed to FOIA@nw.org or mailed in print format to:
Greg Sharma-Holt, Associate Counsel and Chief FOIA Officer
Office of the General Counsel
NeighborWorks America
999 N. Capitol St. NE, Suite 900
Washington, DC 20002

Fees

There is no charge for information that is regularly made available in the ordinary course of business. Otherwise, reasonable rates will be charged for requests that require more than two hours of labor or more than 100 pages of photocopying.

Receipt of Request

NeighborWorks America will confirm receipt of a FOIA request within 10 working days and will strive to notify the requester within 20 days of our decision to grant or deny it. If this timeframe is not possible, our FOIA officer will notify the requester of the reason for delay and the right to appeal.

Request Denial (In Part or In Whole)

The FOIA enabling legislation is based on a presumption of public access. Therefore, requests may only be denied if NeighborWorks America can demonstrate which FOIA exemptions apply to the document in question. The FOIA exemptions are listed in 5 USC 552(b).

Appeals Process

A person whose properly submitted request is denied may appeal within 90 days by submitting a letter marked "FOIA Appeal" to our Office of General Counsel: 

Rutledge Simmons, General Counsel
Office of General Counsel
NeighborWorks America
999 N. Capitol Street NE, Suite 900
Washington, DC 20002