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Bioterrorism Bill Approved, With Narrower Limits on Secrets, Sunset Clause

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  1. Freedom of Information
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Congress passed legislation that will revamp the Bush administration’s $5.6 billion effort to counter bioterrorism threats. The bill creates a statutory exemption from FOIA for sensitive technical and scientific data on bioterrorism defense efforts. That provision is sharply scaled back from earlier language excluding the new bioterrorism agency from FOIA, which met harsh criticism from open government advocates. The exemption in the new bill sunsets in seven years. (12/13/06)