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Chairman Hastings Letter to Secretary Salazar on Failure to Provide Stream Buffer Zone Rule Rewrite Documents


WASHINGTON, D.C., May 11, 2012 -

Dear Mr. Secretary:

On April 5, 2012, a subpoena was issued and served on you, as Secretary of the Interior, for a complete and unredacted copy of specific documents, communications, and information related to the rewrite of the 2008 Stream Buffer Zone Rule by the Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement, (“Subpoena”).

The Department’s April 12 and April 27, 2012 responses failed to comply with this duly authorized and issued subpoena. The Department’s April 12 response provided only 7 documents, of these many were heavily redacted, approximately half had already been produced by the Office of Management and Budget without the need of a subpoena, and one of the documents is readily available online. The Department’s April 27 production provided only 11 documents, including duplicates of the same documents or of documents previously provided, and again more transcripts that were so heavily redacted that there is no relevant information to be gathered from them. Both productions lacked an index to identify any withheld documents, and failed to assert any constitutional privilege to justify any such withheld documents as was required by the Subpoena. Subpoena at 2 ¶10.

Read the entire letter HERE.




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