New York State attempting to speed FOIL response

ALBANY N.Y. (WHEC) – New York State aims to increase its speed for responding to government record requests under the Freedom of Information Law (FOIL), announced Gov. Kathy Hochul on Monday.

People have used FOIL requests to access the state’s statistics, budget information, and more recently police discipline records. Hochul said the initiative will help agencies post some of the most commonly requested documents online. It will also allow agencies to respond to information requests without the Executive Chamber’s review

“We’re taking meaningful action to streamline the process to access public records, so journalists and members of the public can more easily access information to which they are entitled,” Hochul said.

The state has processed more than 400 FOIL requests since Hochul took office in late August 2021. She announced plans to improve the efficiency of the FOIL process a month after becoming governor. FOIL became a federal law in 1966 allowing the public and courts to request non-classified government documents.