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Case TitleStepien v. Spinrad et al
DistrictWestern District of Washington
CitySeattle
Case Number2:2021cv01166
Date Filed2021-08-27
Date ClosedOpen
JudgeJudge Ricardo S. Martinez
PlaintiffCarol Stepien
Case DescriptionCarol Stepien, a former employee of the agency, submitted two FOIA requests to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration for records concerning communications to or from Michelle McClure related to high turnover rates at the agency. The agency acknowledged receipt of the requests but after hearing nothing further from the agency, Stepien filed suit.
Complaint issues: Failure to respond within statutory time limit, Adequacy - Search, Litigation - Attorney's fees

DefendantRick Spinrad Under Secretary of Commerce for Oceans and Atmosphere and NOAA Administrator
DefendantRick Spinrad Under Secretary of Commerce for Oceans and Atmosphere and NOAA Administrator
TERMINATED: 10/01/2021
DefendantMr. Rick Spinrad
DefendantNational Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration an Agency of the United States
also known as NOAA
DefendantNational Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration an Agency of the United States
TERMINATED: 10/01/2021
also known as NOAA
TERMINATED: 10/01/2021
DefendantNational Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration an Agency of the United States
DefendantGina Raimondo Secretary of the U.S. Department of Commerce
TERMINATED: 10/19/2021
DefendantGina Raimondo Secretary of the U.S. Department of Commerce
DefendantDepartment of Commerce
Documents
Docket
Complaint
Complaint attachment 1
Complaint attachment 2
Opinion/Order [6]
Opinion/Order [15]
Opinion/Order [18]
Opinion/Order [20]
Opinion/Order [22]
User-contributed Documents
 
Docket Events (Hide)
Date FiledDoc #Docket Text

2021-08-271COMPLAINT against defendant(s) Rick Spinrad, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (Receipt # AWAWDC-7226775) Attorney Nolan Patrick Lim added to party Carol Stepien(pty:pla), filed by Carol Stepien. (Attachments: # 1 Summons, # 2 Civil Cover Sheet)(Lim, Nolan) Modified on 9/2/2021 to add additional defendant filing is against (KB). (Entered: 08/27/2021)
2021-08-31Hon. S. Kate Vaughan added. (RE) (Entered: 08/31/2021)
2021-08-312Summons Electronically Issued as to defendant Rick Spinrad. (RE) (Entered: 08/31/2021)
2021-10-013AMENDED COMPLAINT against defendant(s) Rick Spinrad, filed by Carol Stepien.(Lim, Nolan) (Entered: 10/01/2021)
2021-10-01Party Gina Raimondo added. (TF) (Entered: 10/15/2021)
2021-10-144NOTICE of Appearance by attorney Katie Denise Fairchild on behalf of Defendants National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Rick Spinrad. (Fairchild, Katie) (Entered: 10/14/2021)
2021-10-145Joint Stipulated MOTION , filed by Defendants National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Rick Spinrad. Noting Date 10/14/2021, (Fairchild, Katie) (Entered: 10/14/2021)
2021-10-156ORDER signed by Hon. S. Kate Vaughan, re: the parties' 5 Joint Stipulation. (TF) (Entered: 10/15/2021)
2021-10-157NOTICE OF ASSIGNMENT TO A US MAGISTRATE JUDGE AND DECLINATION OF CONSENT FORM. Each party will be deemed to have knowingly and voluntarily consented to proceed before a Magistrate Judge if this form is not returned by 10/22/2021. Please Note: Forms must not be electronically filed with the Court. (KMP) (Entered: 10/15/2021)
2021-10-198Second AMENDED COMPLAINT against defendant(s) Department of Commerce, filed by Carol Stepien.(Lim, Nolan) (Entered: 10/19/2021)
2021-10-229MINUTE ORDER REASSIGNING CASE by Clerk Ravi Subramanian. Case reassigned to Judge Ricardo S. Martinez and referred to Hon. S. Kate Vaughan pursuant to Local Rule MJR 6 and Amended General Order 02-19. (KMP) (Entered: 10/22/2021)
2021-10-2210ORDER REGARDING INITIAL DISCLOSURES, JOINT STATUS REPORT AND EARLY SETTLEMENT by Hon. S. Kate Vaughan. FRCP 26(f) Conference Deadline is 11/12/2021, Initial Disclosure Deadline is 11/26/2021, Joint Status Report due by 12/3/2021. (KMP) (Entered: 10/22/2021)
2021-11-0211PRAECIPE re 4 Notice of Appearance by Defendants Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (Attachments: # 1 Exhibit)(Fairchild, Katie) (Entered: 11/02/2021)
2021-11-0212ANSWER to 8 Amended Complaint by Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.(Fairchild, Katie) (Entered: 11/02/2021)
2021-11-19******NOTICE TO PARTIES: This proceeding is exempt from the requirements of Fed. R. Civ. P. 26(a) and Fed. R. Civ. P. 26(f). The Court STRIKES these deadlines in 10 ORDER REGARDING INITIAL DISCLOSURES, JOINT STATUS REPORT AND EARLY SETTLEMENT. (KMP) (Entered: 11/19/2021)
2021-12-0313JOINT STATUS REPORT signed by all parties. Filed by Defendants Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.(Fairchild, Katie) (Entered: 12/03/2021)
2022-01-1114Joint Stipulated MOTION , filed by Defendants Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Noting Date 1/11/2022, (Fairchild, Katie) (Entered: 01/11/2022)
2022-01-1215ORDER re Parties' 14 Joint Stipulated MOTION. The parties shall provide this Court with a status update on or before 3/31/2022. Signed by Hon. S. Kate Vaughan. (SB) (Entered: 01/12/2022)
2022-02-1516NOTICE of Appearance by attorney James C. Strong on behalf of Defendants Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. (Strong, James) (Entered: 02/15/2022)
2022-03-3117Joint Stipulated MOTION , filed by Defendants Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Noting Date 3/31/2022, (Strong, James) (Entered: 03/31/2022)
2022-03-3118ORDER re Parties' 17 Joint Stipulated MOTION. Joint Status Report due by 5/31/2022. If at any time in before then it becomes apparent that resolution between the parties is not feasible, the parties will submit a proposed schedule to the Court for motion practice. Signed by Hon. S. Kate Vaughan. (SB) (Entered: 03/31/2022)
2022-05-3119Joint Stipulated MOTION , filed by Defendants Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Noting Date 5/31/2022, (Strong, James) (Entered: 05/31/2022)
2022-06-0220ORDER re Parties' 19 Joint Stipulated MOTION. The parties shall file a joint status report on or before 7/31/2022. If at any time before then it becomes apparent that resolution between the parties is not feasible, the parties will submit a proposed schedule to the Court for motion practice. Signed by Hon. S. Kate Vaughan. (SB) (Entered: 06/02/2022)
2022-07-2921Joint Stipulated MOTION , filed by Defendants Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Noting Date 7/29/2022, (Strong, James) (Entered: 07/29/2022)
2022-08-0322ORDER re parties' 21 Joint Stipulated MOTION. Joint Status Report due by 9/30/2022. Signed by Hon. S. Kate Vaughan. (SB) (Entered: 08/03/2022)
2022-08-2223NOTICE OF WITHDRAWAL OF COUNSEL: Attorney James C. Strong for Defendants Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. (Strong, James) (Entered: 08/22/2022)
2022-09-3024Joint Stipulated MOTION , filed by Defendants Department of Commerce, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Noting Date 9/30/2022, (Fairchild, Katie) (Entered: 09/30/2022)
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by FOIA Project Staff
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