United StatesDepartment of AgricultureGrain Inspection,Packers and StockyardsAdministrationStop 36421400 Independence Ave., SWWashington, D.C. 20250-3642July 24, 2012Ms. Lisette Garcia, J.D.Senior InvestigatorJudical Watch425 Third Street, S.W., Suite 800Washington, D.C. 20024Dear Ms. Garcia:This is in response to your your May 18, 2012, Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) to the U.S.Department of Agriculture seeking contracts, expense records, and communications related totraining and services provided by Samuel Betances or his firm Souder, Betances & Associates,Chicago, Illinois.
USDA’s Grain Inspection, Packer and Stockyards Administration (GIPSA) conducted a
thorough search of Agency records and located 220 pages of documents that are responsive toyour request. GIPSA is releasing all pages in their entirety, with the exception of portions of onepage which have been been determined to be non-responsive. Information on that page has beenredacted because it does not relate to training provided by Samuel Betances or his firm.
You may appeal my withholding of that portion of the responsive record by submitting yourcorrespondence to the GIPSA Administrator at the address below by September 7, 2012:Mr. Larry Mitchell, AdministratorGrain Inspection, Packers & Stockyards Administration, USDA1400 Independence Avenue, S.W., STOP 3601Washington, D.C. 20250-3601Please refer to 2012-GIPSA-02659-
F in your appeal and add the words “FOIA Appeal” to the front of the
envelope. To assist the Administrator in reviewing your appeal, please provide specific reasons why youbelieve modification of the determination is warranted.Sincerely,
Joanne C. Peterson
Joanne C. PetersonGIPSA Freedom of Information Act Officer202-720-8087Enclosures (provided electronically)