Public Citizen v. U.S. Department of Labor (SPWD FOIA)

On February 21, 2020, Public Citizen submitted a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request to the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) seeking correspondence between DOL and those outside the agency regarding supplemental prevailing wage determinations (SPWDs) issued by DOL’s National Prevailing Wage Center in 2013. In early 2020, DOL reversed its long-standing position and rescinded the SPWDs. Public Citizen’s FOIA request seeks to shed light on the reasons for the change in DOL’s position. Although DOL initially estimated that it would complete action on Public Citizen’s FOIA request by March 31, 2020, the agency stated on April 10, 2020, that it was no longer able to provide an estimated date of completion. Because the deadline for DOL to respond had already passed, we filed suit in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia to compel DOL to produce the requested records. After the lawsuit was filed, DOL conducted a search and produced the responsive records, and the case was dismissed pursuant to the parties’ agreement.