S.3006 - President John F. Kennedy Assassination Records Collection Act of 1992

Sponsor: Sen. Glenn, John H., Jr. [D-OH] (Introduced 07/22/1992) Committees: Senate - Governmental Affairs Committee Reports: S.Rept 102-328 Part 1; S.Rept 102-328 Part 1 Latest Action: 10/26/1992 Became Public Law No: 102-526.

Summary: S.3006 — 102nd Congress (1991-1992)

 

Shown Here:
Passed Senate amended (07/27/1992)

President John F. Kennedy Assassination Records Collection Act of 1992 - Directs the National Archives and Records Administration to establish a collection of records to be known as the President John F. Kennedy Assassination Records Collection (the Collection). States that the Collection shall consist of copies of all Government records relating to the assassination of President Kennedy, which shall be transmitted to the National Archives (NA). Specifies Collection contents, which include: (1) all assassination records that have been transmitted to NA, or the disclosure of which is postponed under this Act; and (2) all Review Board records as required by this Act.

Requires all assassination records transmitted to NA for public disclosure to be included in the Collection and made available for public inspection and copying.

Requires the Collection to be preserved, protected, archived, and made available to the public at NA using appropriations authorized, specified, and restricted for use under this Act.

Requires NA to ensure the security of postponed assassination records in the Collection.

Continues with respect to the Collection the oversight jurisdiction of the House Committee on Government Operations and the Senate Committee on Governmental Affairs.

Requires each Government office to identify and organize its assassination records and prepare them for transmission to the Archivist for inclusion in the Collection.

Prohibits assassination records: (1) from being destroyed, altered, or mutilated in any way; and (2) that were made available previously to the public or created outside government from being withheld, redacted, postponed for public disclosure, or reclassified.

Provides that, during the review by Government offices and pending review activity by the Review Board (Board) established below, each Government office shall retain custody of its assassination records for purposes of preservation, security, and efficiency, unless: (1) the Board requires the physical transfer of records for review purposes; (2) transfer is necessary for a Board function; or (3) it is a third agency record.

Provides that within 300 days after the enactment of this Act, each Government office shall review, identify, and organize each assassination record in its custody or possession for disclosure to the public, review by the Board, and transmission to the Archivist. Requires any Government office, in carrying out such activities, to: (1) determine which of its records are assassination records; (2) determine which of its assassination records have been disclosed or publicly available in a complete and unredacted form; (3) determine which of its assassination records, or particular information contained in such a record, was created by a third agency or by another Government office, and transmit to a third agency or other government office those records, or complete and accurate copies thereof; (4) determine whether its assassination records or particular information in assassination records are covered by the standards for postponement of public disclosure under this Act; (5) organize and make available to the Board all identified assassination records the public disclosure of which in whole or in part may be postponed under this Act; (6) organize and make available to the Board any record concerning which the office has any uncertainty as to whether the record is an assassination record governed by this Act; (7) give priority to the identification, review, and transmission, of all assassination records publicly available or disclosed as of the date of enactment of this Act in a redacted or edited form; (8) give priority to the identification, review, and transmission, under standards for postponement set forth in this Act, of assassination records that on the date of enactment are the subject of litigation under the Freedom of Information Act; and (9) make available to the Board any additional information and records that the Board has reason to believe it requires for a review under this Act.

Requires the Director of each archival depository to: (1) have as a priority the expedited review for public disclosure of assassination records in its possession and custody; and (2) make such records available to the Board as required by this Act.

Requires the Archivist to: (1) prepare and make available to all Government offices a standard form of identification or finding aid for use with each assassination record subject to review under this Act; and (2) ensure that the identification aid program is established in such a manner as to result in the creation of a uniform system of electronic records by Government offices that are compatible with each other.

Provides that assassination records which are in NA's possession on the enactment of this Act, and which have been publicly available in their entirety without redaction, shall be made available in the Collection without any additional review by the Board, and shall not be required to have such an identification aid unless required by the Archivist.

Requires each Government office to: (1) transmit to the Archivist, and make immediately available to the public all assassination records that can be publicly disclosed without any redaction, adjustment, or withholding under the standards of this Act; and (2) transmit to the Archivist upon the Board's approval for postponement all assassination records the public disclosure of which has been postponed under this Act's standards, to become part of the Collection.

Requires that assassination records the public disclosure of which has been postponed, pending transmission to the Archivist, be held for reasons of security and preservation by the originating body until such time as the information security program has been established.

Requires that all postponed or redacted records be reviewed periodically by the originating agency and the Archivist consistent with Board recommendations. Requires a periodic review to address the public disclosure of additional assassination records in the Collection under the standards of this Act.

Requires that all postponed assassination records determined to require continued postponement require an unclassified written description of the reason for continued postponement.

Requires that each assassination record be publicly disclosed in full, and be available in the Collection no later than the date that is 25 years after the date of enactment of this Act, unless the President certifies that: (1) continued postponement is made necessary by an identifiable harm to the military defense, intelligence operations, law enforcement, or conduct of foreign relations; and (2) the identifiable harm is of such gravity that it outweighs the public interest in disclosure.

Provides that disclosure of assassination records or particular information in assassination records to the public may be postponed subject to the limitations of this Act if the threat to the military defense, intelligence operations, or conduct of U.S. foreign relations posed by the public disclosure of the assassination record is of such gravity that it outweighs the public interest, and such disclosure would reveal certain information. Permits postponement, also, if the public disclosure of the assassination record: (1) would reveal the name or identity of a living person who provided confidential information to the United States and pose a substantial risk of harm to that person; (2) could reasonably be expected to constitute an unwarranted and substantial invasion of personal privacy; (3) would compromise the existence of an understanding of confidentiality currently requiring protection between a Government agent and a cooperating individual or a foreign government, and public disclosure would be so harmful that it outweighs the public interest; or (4) would reveal a security or protective procedure currently utilized, or reasonably expected to be utilized, by the Secret Service or another Government agency responsible for protecting Government officials, and public disclosure would be so harmful that it outweighs the public interest.

Establishes, as an independent agency, the Assassinations Records Review Board to consider and render decisions on a determination by a Government office to seek to postpone the disclosure of assassination records. Provides that, in carrying out such function, the Board shall consider and render decisions on whether: (1) a record constitutes an assassination record; and (2) an assassination record or particular information in a record qualifies for postponement of disclosure under this Act. Enumerates specific Board powers. Describes the circumstances under which the Board shall terminate and provides that upon termination and winding up, the Board shall transfer all of its records to the Archivist for inclusion in the Collection.

Provides that, pending the outcome of the Board's review activity, a Government office shall retain custody of its assassination records for purposes of preservation, security, and efficiency, unless the Board requires the physical transfer of records for review purposes or such transfer is necessary for an official Board function.

Requires the Board to publish a schedule for review of all assassination records in the Federal Register within 90 days of its appointment and begin its review of assassination records within 180 days after the enactment of this Act.

Directs the Board to require that all assassination records be transmitted to the Archivist and disclosed to the public in the Collection in the absence of clear and convincing evidence that a Government record is not an assassination record, or the record or particular information within the record qualifies for postponement of public disclosure under this Act. Requires the Board to report to the Archivist with respect to each assassination record or particular information in such records the public disclosure of which is postponed or for which only substitutions or summaries have been disclosed to the public.

Provides that, following its review and a determination of public disclosure or postponement, the Board shall notify the head of the originating body of its determination and publish a copy of it in the Federal Register.

Requires that after the Board has made a formal determination concerning the public disclosure or postponement of disclosure of an executive branch assassination record or information within such a record, the President shall have the sole authority to require the disclosure or postponement of such record or information under the standards set forth above. Requires the President to provide the Board with a written certification specifying the President's decision within 30 days after the Board's determination.

Subjects postponed executive branch assassination records to periodic review, downgrading and declassification, and public disclosure requirements of this Act.

Requires the Board to report annually on its activities to the Congress, the Archivist, and the head of any Government office whose records have been the subject of Board activity. Specifies the contents of such reports.

Authorizes the Board to request the Attorney General to petition: (1) any court in the United States or abroad to release any information relevant to the assassination of President Kennedy that is held under seal; and (2) any U.S. court to release any information relevant to the assassination of President Kennedy that is held under injunction.

Expresses the sense of the Congress that: (1) the Attorney General should assist the Board to unseal possibly relevant records that are held under seal or injunction; (2) the Secretary of State should contact the Government of the Republic of Russia and seek the disclosure of all records of the former Soviet Union relevant to the assassination of President Kennedy, and contact any other foreign government that may hold information relevant to such event and seek its disclosure; and (3) all executive agencies should cooperate in full with the Board to seek the disclosure of all relevant information.

Authorizes appropriations. Provides for interim funding until funds are appropriated.

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