As reported by the Senate Committee on the Judiciary on February 9, 2015
S. 337 would amend the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) and aims to provide easier access to government documents. FOIA generally allows any person to obtain records from federal agencies. Specifically, the legislation would: establish a single website for making FOIA requests; direct agencies to make records available in an electronic format; reduce the number of exemptions agencies can use to withhold information from the public; clarify procedures for handling frequently requested documents and charging fees; establish the Chief FOIA Officers Council; and require agencies to prepare additional reports for the Congress on FOIA matters.
CBO estimates that implementing S. 337 would cost $20 million over the 2015-2020 period, assuming appropriation of the necessary amounts. Enacting S. 337 could affect direct spending by agencies not funded through annual appropriations (such as the Tennessee Valley Authority). Therefore, pay-as-you-go procedures apply. CBO estimates, however, that any net changes direct spending by those agencies would not be significant. Enacting the bill would not affect revenues.
S. 337 contains no intergovernmental or private-sector mandates as defined in the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act (UMRA) and would not affect the budgets of state, local, or tribal governments.