CONFERENCE REPORT ON H.R. 2892, DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY APPROPRIATIONS ACT, 2010
Sec. 565. (a) Short Title.--This section may be cited as the "Protected National Security Documents Act of 2009".
(b) Notwithstanding any other provision of the law to the contrary, no protected document, as defined in subsection
(c), shall be subject to disclosure under section 552 of title 5, United States Code or any proceeding under that section.
(c) Definitions.--In this section:
(1) Protected document.--The term "protected document" means any record--
(A) for which the Secretary of Defense has issued a certification, as described in subsection (d), stating that disclosure of that record would endanger citizens of the United States, members of the United States Armed Forces, or employees of the United States Government deployed outside the United States; and
(B) that is a photograph that--
(i) was taken during the period beginning on September 11, 2001, through January 22, 2009; and
(ii) relates to the treatment of individuals engaged, captured, or detained after September 11, 2001, by the Armed Forces of the United States in operations outside of the United States.
(2) Photograph.--The term "photograph" encompasses all photographic images, whether originals or copies, including still photographs, negatives, digital images, films, video tapes, and motion pictures.
(1) In general.--For any photograph described under subsection (c)(1), the Secretary of Defense shall issue a certification if the Secretary of Defense determines that disclosure of that photograph would endanger citizens of the United States, members of the United States Armed Forces, or employees of the United States Government deployed outside the United States.
(2) Certification expiration.--A certification and a renewal of a certification issued pursuant to subsection (d)(3) shall expire 3 years after the date on which the certification or renewal, is issued by the Secretary of Defense.
(3) Certification renewal.--The Secretary of Defense may issue--
(A) a renewal of a certification at any time; and
(B) more than 1 renewal of a certification.
(4) Notice to congress.--The Secretary of Defense shall provide Congress a timely notice of the Secretary's issuance of a certification and of a renewal of a certification.
(e) Rule of Construction.--Nothing in this section shall be construed to preclude the voluntary disclosure of a protected document.
(f) Effective Date.--This section shall take effect on the date of enactment of this Act and apply to any protected document.
Joint Explanatory Statement
Section 565. The conference agreement includes and modifies a new provision proposed by the Senate on the release of protected national security documents. The House proposed no similar provision.