Government Information Specialist

Rockville, Maryland
Jan 27, 2022
Feb 01, 2022
Full Time

As a Government Information Specialist, you will serve as a member of the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) team. You will provide advice and assistance to all offices regarding Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) and Privacy Act (PA)activities, including conducting training sessions, interpreting requests, coordinating responses, reviewing documents for exempt information, resolving related problems and assuring responses are timely and accurate. You will counsel FOIA coordinators in NRC regarding meeting deadlines for receipt of documents, scoping requests and volume of documents involved in order to resolve problems and to expedite processing requests; review responses and documents supplied by staff offices.

You will develop recommendations or solutions on legal and policy matters pertaining to the FOIA and Privacy Act and research pertinent law and related information and develop drafts of regulations procedures, manuals, and other guidance necessary to effectively implement the FOIA. You will examine records relating to NRC mission, which can include enforcement actions and NRC investigations to verify that identities of confidential sources, and privacy interests of other individuals meet legal criteria for exempting information from disclosure and are supported by agency policy. Other duties include:
  • Provide guidance to the public on the process of requesting documents under FOIA
  • Coordinate staff reports on fee estimates and prepare notices to requesters on estimated fees
  • Stay abreast of FOIA developments and apply knowledge gained to make recommendations to the FOIA team.
  • Consult with NRC licensees and other agencies.
  • Review received requests and determine if information has been publicly released.
  • Determine possible agency Offices for provision of responsive materials and assign fee estimates and searches / reviews to those Offices.
  • Compile responsive records from various Offices and redact content, as necessary, eliminate duplicate information, obtain consent to fees or advance payment from requesters and enter response in FOIAonline, prior to sending response to requester.
  • Maintain FOIA statistics, provide training sessions to FOIA coordinators and agency staff, as needed.
  • Implement changes to agency regulations and guidance as required, by Executive Orders and amendments to FOIA.


Conditions of Employment

  • This is a Drug Testing position.
  • U.S. Citizenship Required
  • Background investigation leading to a clearance is required for new hires.

You must meet the qualifications for this position by no later than 30 calendar days after the closing date of this announcement and before placement in the position.


In order to qualify for this position, you must have at least one year of specialized experience at the next lower grade level (GG-12) level in the Federal service or equivalent experience in the private or public sector.

Specialized experience is defined as experience in researching, analyzing, and evaluating data for response to Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests; assembling and reviewing proposed FOIA release packages and applying appropriate FOIA exemptions. Experience in reviewing and analyzing appeals from denials of access to records requested under FOIA and recommending final agency decision on release / non-release of records. Experience in interpreting and applying statutory requirements rules, regulations, public laws, and guidelines governing the FOIA and Privacy Act programs.

The ideal candidate will be able to demonstrate the following:
  • Knowledge of the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), Attorney General reports and interpretations, appropriate case law, and pertinent Executive Orders, regulations, policies, and procedures governing the protection of sensitive information. EXAMPLE: Describe specific training, experience, and assignments that demonstrate your knowledge of and ability to interpret and apply laws, regulations, executive orders, and policies to implement and manage FOIA. Describe your experience in developing or applying agency policies and developing or applying office-level policies and procedures for administering and executing the FOIA program. Include any participation in special projects to evaluate the FOIA program; tasks requiring you to interpret laws, regulations, policies, information, etc., and prepare written or oral reports or presentations to DOJ, managers, or employees about the program; and special assignments relying upon your knowledge of this program to develop and implement enterprise wide or office-level policies and procedures.
  • Demonstrated ability or potential to provide leadership and effectively utilize human resources. EXAMPLE: Describe specific experience, training and assignments that demonstrate your ability or potential to provide leadership, project management or supervision as evidenced by success in areas such as: resolving difficult and complex problems; formulating program goals and objectives; planning long-term and short-term program activities; establishing and controlling procedures and schedules of work products or programs; establishing methods for evaluating the effectiveness of work programs and procedures; providing oversight, guidance, training, and direction to personnel of diverse backgrounds to foster a motivated and effective work atmosphere; and effectively utilizing human resources. Describe experience managing FOIA casework and reducing or eliminating FOIA initial requests and appeals backlog. Describe any participation in a "Leadership Development Academy" or other similar agency sponsored activity.
  • Demonstrated ability to identify issues and problems, determine relative priorities, develop definitive alternatives, and to focus quickly on possible solutions for senior management action. EXAMPLE: Describe specific work experience, training and assignments, or other activities that indicate your ability to identify issues and problems, determine priorities and recommend possible solutions to senior management. Describe the levels of management you have provided recommendations to and the types of activities involved. Describe how the applicant has managed, processed and closed any backlog of FOIA requests and appeals.
  • Skill in communicating information, ideas, and advice in a clear, concise, and a logical manner, both orally and in writing, within both internal and external organizations. EXAMPLE: Describe work experience, training, or other activities that indicate your ability to communicate ideas and advice in a clear, concise, and a logical manner. Describe any presentations you have given, including their purpose and size of audiences. Discuss any publications you have authored or coauthored. Describe experience with statistical reporting of FOIA accomplishments, and how this data was presented to senior management.
  • Demonstrated ability or potential in: working with electronic FOIA case management software programs; preventing, reducing, or eliminating FOIA case backlogs; planning, tracking and prioritizing a variety of programmatic and administrative activities involving competing priorities and statutory deadlines. EXAMPLE: Ability to provide leadership and to effectively utilize human resources, including contractor technical staff. Experience in setting customer service levels and suing tact, diplomacy, and negotiation skills to ensure responsiveness to customer needs.

  • A description of how you possess the specialized experience, as well as how you meet the qualifications desired, should be addressed in your resume and additional space provided for supplemental response.


    This job does not have an education qualification requirement.

    Additional information

    Following the agency's re-entry date of November 7, 2021, the position advertised in this vacancy announcement is not approved for full-time remote or full-time fixed telework. However, most NRC positions are eligible for some type of telework, in accordance with agency policy.

    To ensure compliance with an applicable preliminary nationwide injunction, which may be supplemented, modified, or vacated, depending on the course of ongoing litigation, the NRC will take no action to implement or enforce the COVID19 vaccination requirement pursuant to Executive Order 14043 on Requiring Coronavirus Disease 2019 Vaccination for Federal Employees. The NRC will request information regarding the vaccination status of selected applicants for the purposes of implementing other workplace safety protocols, such as protocols related to masking, physical distancing, testing, travel, and quarantine.

    Based on the staffing needs of the office, additional selections may be made through this vacancy announcement.

    The NRC provides reasonable accommodation to applicants with disabilities where appropriate. Individuals with disabilities may contact the Selective Placement Coordinator for assistance with the application or hiring process via Deaf applicants may contact the Disability Program Manager by calling the NRC videophone at 240-428-3217.

    Individuals who are eligible for non-competitive appointment under an OPM special appointing authority may apply for consideration under a comparable NRC non-competitive appointing authority. Veterans, please visit:

    Selectee's will be required to complete a "Declaration of Federal Employment", (OF-306), prior to being appointed to determine their suitability for Federal employment and to authorize a background investigation. False statements or responses on your resume or questionnaire can jeopardize your employment opportunity and subject you to disciplinary action, including removal from Federal service.

    A transferable security clearance from another agency or a background investigation leading to a clearance is required for all new hires. To begin work at the NRC without a security clearance, you must be granted a temporary waiver of the required clearance, referred to as a 145(b) waiver. To be eligible for a 145(b) waiver you will need a favorable education verification, reference, credit, and criminal history checks. If a wavier is granted, the successful completion of a background investigation and favorable adjudication is required for continued employment. If you have resided outside the U.S. for an extended period of time, the agency may not be able to (1) grant the 145(b) waiver where the required investigation cannot be completed in a timely manner, or (2) achieve timely completion of the background investigation required for a security clearance.

    The NRC is a zero tolerance agency with respect to illegal drug use. Individuals selected for this position will be subject to pre-appointment drug testing unless currently in a NRC position subject to random drug testing AND will be subject to random drug testing upon appointment to the NRC.