AG Ferguson sues for records relating to National Archives closure

SEATTLE — Attorney General Bob Ferguson filed three lawsuits Monday for documents relating to the closure of the National Archives facility in Seattle.

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The office filed lawsuits in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington against the General Services Administration, the Office of Management and Budget and the National Archives.

The lawsuits seek records that Ferguson filed for more than 6 months ago under the Freedom of Information Act. Under FOIA, agencies have 20 business days to respond to requests.

Ferguson said his office hasn’t received any documents.

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The attorney general’s office also sent a letter to a fourth agency who is demanding thousands of dollars to produce the records.

“The decision to close the National Archives in Seattle has far-reaching impacts across the Northwest,” Ferguson said. “The first-hand, historical records contained there is essential to the cultural fabric of our communities.

The closure of the National Archives building back in January was a surprise to many, and local representatives were outspoken against the decision.

The archives contained many records essential to Washington, including files on the interment of Japanese Americans and tribal and treaty records.