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are available for public inspection and copying in the United States Customs Service public reference facilities (see section 103.1), including the following:
Catalogue of Customs Forms.
103.8 Other Customs records.
(a) General. In general, all other documents issued by the Secretary of the Treasury, the Commissioner of Customs, or other officials of the Department of the Treasury of the United States Customs Service in matters administered by the United States Customs Service, if sufficiently identified, and unless exempted from disclosure under section 103.10, are available for inspection. Copies thereof may be obtained by request in person, or by correspondence. However, documents contained in files on pending matters may be withheld from inspection or copying in the interest of effective operation.
(b) Classes of records available for inspection and copying. The following classes of records of the United States Customs Service may be inspected and copied, upon request. Individual documents in certain records may be exempt from disclosure under section 103.10, or may be made available with identifying details deleted. The list does not purport to be exhaustive:
(1) Records relating to:
(i) Comments submitted by private parties in response to a published notice of proposed rule making and of proposed changes in tariff classification, unless the submitter states clearly that the information is privileged or confidential, giving reasons therefor, and the Commissioner of Customs agrees that the information contained therein is entitled to exemption from disclosure under section 103.10.
(ii) Advisory committees on Customs matters.
(viii) Proceedings under the countervailing duty provision of the Tariff Act of 1930 (19 U.S.C. 1303), after publication of notice or order to countervail.
(ix) The administration of and decisions concerning import quotas.
(x) Proceedings under the Antidumping Act, 1921, as amended (19 U.S.C. 160 et seq.), as provided for in section 153.23 of this chapter.
(xi) Customs laboratory methods.
(i) Matters arising under the Tariff Schedules of the United States (19 U.S.C. 1202).
(ii) Whether or not specific items, articles, or merchandise qualify for entry under the Trade Fair Act of 1959 (19 U.S.C. 1751 et seq.), and decisions concerning disposition of articles previously entered under the Trade Fair Act; Customs participation and assistance at Trade Fairs,
(iii) The dutiable status of gifts pursuant to section 321, Tariff Act of 1930, as amended (19 U.S.C. 1321).
(iv) The eligibility of vehicles used in international traffic pursuant to section 322(a), Tariff Act of 1930 (19 U.S.C. 1322(a)) and other instruments of international traffic generally for duty-free entry.
(v) Prohibition from entry of merchandise produced by convict, forced, or indentured labor.
(vi) The entry or valuation of merchandise.
(vii) Liens in cases arising under section 564, Tariff Act of 1930, as amended (19 U.S.C. 1564).
(viii) Bills of lading, carriers' certificates, or rights in respect of merchandise, cases arising under section 483 or 484 (c), (h), or (i), Tariff Act of 1930, as amended (19 U.S.C. 1483, 1484).
(ix) Trademarks, trade names, copyrights, patents, and related matters.
(x) Country of origin marking requirements of section 304, Tariff Act of 1930, as amended (19 U.S.C. 1304).
(xi) Psittacine or other birds, bird feathers, bird skins, monkeys, dogs, cats, and other animals and pets prohibited entry or subject to restrictions and controls on entry.
(xii) Entry of articles admitted temporarily free of duty under bond as provided in schedule 8, part 5C, Tariff Schedules of the United States (19 U.S.C. 1202) and entry of articles admitted temporarily free of duty under A.T.A, and E.C.S. Carnets as provided in section 114.22 (a) and (b) of this chapter.
(xiii) Tonnage taxes (regular, special, and discriminatory) and light money.
(xiv) The entry, clearance, and use of vessels and permits for them to proceed coastwise.
(xv) The regulation of vessels in the foreign, coastal, fishing, and other trades of the United States.
(xvi) The limitation of the use of foreign vessels in waters under the jurisdiction of the United States.
(xvii) Salvage operations by vessels within the territorial waters of the United States.
(xviii) The assessment and collection of duties on equipment or repairs of vessels or aircraft under section 466, Tariff Act of 1930, as amended (19 U.S.C. 1466) and decisions regarding the remission or refund of such duties.
(xix) Requirements for entry, clearance, and use of aircraft.
(xx) The arrival or departure and the use of motor vehicles, railway trains, or other vehicles.
(xxi) Adequacy of premises at Customs bonded warehouses and control of the merchandise stored therein,
(xxii) Use of protective Customs seals and labels.
103.9 Fees for furnishing records.
(a) Availability to the public. The schedule of fees prescribed by this section shall be made available to the public at all offices of the United States Customs Service. When payment of such fee is received by any Customs employee, a receipt therefor shall be issued.
(b) Services charged for, and amount charged. Except for services in connection with fees prescribed by section 4.98(a) of this chapter, the following charges shall be made:
(1) Whenever files are searched to obtain records for private parties, whether for copying by them or for examination, a charge shall be made, based upon the actual time and salary of the employee, computed in multiples of 1 minute based on an hourly rate computed in accordance with section 19,5(b) of this chapter, but no charge shall be made for such service where the amount, so computed, is less than 50 cents. Where the amount, so computed, is 50 cents or more, but less than $1, a minimum charge of $1 shall be made. There shall be included in computing the cost of such labor any amount actually payable to the employee for performing such service outside his basic 40-hour workweek. However, no charge shall be made under this subparagraph for any service rendered in making any entry and related documents available for examination by authorized person prior to liquidation of the entry or during any period thereafter in which a timely protest may be filed against the liquidation or reliquidation of the entry.
(2) If any copy of a Customs record is made by a Customs employee for a party in interest, such party shall reimburse the Government for the actual cost of material, labor, including that used in searching for the record, and any required postage. The charge for labor shall be computed as prescribed in subparagraph (1) of this paragraph, but a minimum total charge of $2 shall be imposed for each order. For copying by mechanical methods the charge shall be based on the prevailing rates established by private concerns in the locality: Provided, That such charge shall not be less than an amount computed according
to the following minimum scale of charges with a minimum total charge of $2 for each order:
(3) In any case where a search of the files is necessary to verify the correctness of a document which is to be certified by a Customs employee, and for which a fee of 20 cents is charged, a separate charge for the time required for searching shall be made. This charge shall be computed as prescribed in subparagraph (1) of this paragraph, but shall not be imposed if the amount is less than 50 cents. If the amount, so computed, is 50 cents or more, but less than $1, a minimum charge of $1 shall be made.
(c) Governmental agencies or officers. No charge will be made for providing information to other Federal, State, or local governmental agencies or officers thereof submitting requests in their official capacities.
103.10 Classes of Customs documents exempt from disclosure.
United States Customs Service opinions, orders, rulings, statements of pol- TD 73-310. icy, interpretations, and records generally may be inspected, copied, or otherwise obtained unless they relate to the following:
(a) Matters kept secret pursuant to Executive Order. Matters specifically required by Executive Order to be kept secret in the interest of national defense or foreign policy. This includes:
(1) Special category export shipments the disclosure of which might endanger the security of the United States. Such restriction upon disclosure is in effect during any period covered by a finding by the President under section 1 of the Act of August 9, 1950, as amended (50 U.S.C. 191). Such a finding was made by Executive Order No. 10173, October 18, 1950 (3 CFR 1949-1953 Comp. p. 356; 15 FR 7005).
(2) Material classified as "Top Secret," "Secret," or "Confidential" under Executive Order No. 11652 of March 8, 1972, 37 FR 5209.
(b) Certain internal rules and procedures. Information relating solely to the internal personnel rules and practices of any agency. This includes guidelines, operational rules, and procedural manuals for the guidance of Customs officers and employees which relate to such functions as investigation, inspection, auditing, and other functions of a like nature. Examples of this type of information are:
(c) Matters exempted from disclosure by statute. Information specifically exempted from disclosure by statute. This includes information pertaining to trade secrets, business operations, and commercial or financial information of importers, exporters, and other persons who transact Customs business (18 U.S.C. 1905).
(d) Privileged or confidential information. Trade secrets and commercial TD 76–165. or financial information obtained from any person which is privileged or confidential, except as set forth below:
(1) Information contained in invoices, entries, vessel manifests, export declarations, official reports of investigating officers, records pertaining to the licensing of and the revocation or suspension of a license of a customhouse
broker, and other papers or documents filed with Customs officers for any official purpose which containtrade secrets, or commercial or financial information, is exempt from disclosure except for the purpose for which such documents are required to be filed or as otherwise specified in this paragraph.
(2) Information contained in vessel manifests and summary statistical reports of importations and exportations may be disclosed to the extent permitted by section 103.11.
(3) Information obtained in connection with investigations under the Antidumping Act, 1921, as amended (19 U.S.C. 160 et seq.), is available for disclosure under the provisions of section 153.23 of this chapter.
(4) Information contained in Shipper's Export Declarations is available, upon request, for disclosure to United States Government agencies charged with export responsibilities for certain commodities, as listed in 15 CFR 370.10. Information contained in Shipper's Export Declarations may also be made available, upon request, to the Federal Maritime Commission and to the Civil Aeronautics Board. The disclosure of this information by Customs is in accordance with determinations made by the Secretary of Commerce that the withholding of such information is contrary to the national interest (50 U.S.C. App. 2406(c)).
(5) Importers and exporters or their duly authorized brokers, attorneys, or agents, may be permitted to examine manifests with respect to any consignment of goods in which they have a proper and legal interest as principal or agent. No general examination of manifests or the making of any copies or notations from such manifests shall be permitted except with respect to the particular importation or exportation in which they have a proper and legal interest.
(e) Certain inter-agency or intra-agency correspondence. Inter-agency or intra-agency memoranda or letters which would not be available by law to a private party in litigation with the agency. This information includes, but is not limited to, memoranda expressing the views of subordinates, comments endorsing or dissenting from conclusions reached in official rulings, work papers, and other informal expressions of view, and certain documents addressed to other Government agencies (unless such documents are released for disclosure by the recipient).
(f) Material involving personal privacy. Personnel and medical files and similar files the disclosure of which would constitute a clearly unwarranted invasion of personal privacy. These include, but are not limited to, leave records of individual employees, personnel investigative records, personnel security records, personnel financial statements submitted in connection with conflicts of interest, and other records which relate to the private, personal, financial, or business affairs of an individual employee or members of his family, unless the person concerned or his duly authorized agent authorizes disclosure, or unless otherwise made available in this part.
(g) Certain investigatory files. Investigatory files compiled for law enforcement purposes except to the extent available by law to a private party. Some examples of records included in this category are investigative reports relating to: The value and classification for tariff purposes of imported merchandize; suspected violations of section 592 of the Tariff Act of 1930, as amended (19 U.S.C. 1592); allegations of the imporation of merchandise into the United States in contravention of the countervailing duty provision of section 303 of the Tariff Act of 1930 (19 U.S.C. 1303); and the importation of certain books, pictures, or other articles in contravention of the so-called "obscenity statute" (19 U.S.C. 1305). This listing is intended to be illustrative only, and is not intended to be, and is not, an exhaustive listing.
TDs 73-310, 76-198,
103.11 Information on vessel manifests and summary statistical reports.
(a) Disclosure to members of the press. Although the following classes of information are exempt from the requirement of disclosure under the provisions of section 103.10, accredited representatives of the press, including newspapers, commercial magazines, trade journals, and similar publications may be permitted to examine vessel manifests and summary statistical reports of imports and exports and to copy therefrom for publication information and data not of a confidential nature, subject to the following rules:
(1) Of the information and data appearing on outward manifests, only the general character, destination, and quantity (or value) of the commodity, name of vessel, names of shippers, and country of destination may be copied and
published. Where the manifests show both quantity and value, either may be copied and published, but not both in any instance.
(2) Commercial or financial information, such as the names of the con- TD 76-198. signees, marks and numbers, and both quantities and value of commodities shall not be copied from outward manifests or any other papers.
(3) Of the information shown on inward manifests, only the name of the consignee, the general character of the commodity, the quantity (or value), name of vessel, and the country of dispatch shall be copied -and published. When an inward manifest shows both quantity and value of the commodity, either may be copied and published, but not both in any instance.
(b) Review of data, All copies and notations from inward or outward manifests shall be submitted for examination by a Customs officer designated for that purpose.
(c) Disclosure to the public. Members of the public shall be permitted to ob- TD 76–198. tain information from, but not examine, vessel manifests, subject to the rules set forth in paragraphs (a) and (b) of this section. However, importers and exporters or their duly authorized brokers, attorneys, or agents may be permitted to examine manifests with respect to any consignment of goods in which they have a proper and legal interest as principal or agent, but shall not be permitted to make any general examination of manifests or make any copies or notations from them except with reference to the particular importation or exportation in which they have a proper and legal interest.
(d) Suspension of disclosure. (1) Except as provided in section 103.14, upon TD 76–198. written application of a shipper, consignee, or importer, access to the name of such shipper, consignee, or importer, on a manifest will thereafter be refused.
(2) If any individual shall abuse the privilege granted him of examining inward and outward manifests or shall make any improper use of any information or data obtained from such manifests or other papers filed in the customhouse, both he and the party or publication which he represents shall thereafter be denied access to such papers.
103.12 Sanction for improper disclosure by Customs officer or employee.
The improper disclosure of the confidential information contained in Customs TD 73-310, documents, or the disclosure to one importer or exporter of information relative to the business of another importer or exporter acquired by any Customs officer or employee by reason of his official employment, shall constitute grounds for dismissal from the United States Customs Service, suspension, or other disciplinary action, and if done for a valuable consideration will subject such person to criminal prosecution.
103.13 Statements for publication.
District directors of Customs and other Customs officers shall refrain from TD 73-310. disclosing facts concerning seizures, investigations, and other pending cases until Customs action is completed. The district director of Customs or other authorized Customs officer may make public information concerning any case involving an offense against the Customs and navigation laws after completion of the investigation and the case has been closed by final Customs action, such as settlement of a civil liability. Field officers shall exercise proper restraint and judgment in disclosing local transactions.
103.14 Testimony or the production of documents in court.
(a) General. In answer to a legal process or demand from a court issued in TD 73-310. behalf of the United States or an officer thereof, Customs officers or employees shall produce in court, in Customs custody and may testify with respect to, any official Customs papers or documents demanded. When any such process or demand is issued in behalf of a party other than the United States, it shall be complied with only to the extent that the party in whose behalf the papers or documents are demanded is permitted under these regulations to inspect or copy such papers or documents. Exceptions to this rule shall be made only on the written order of the Commissioner of Customs. When requested, copies may be authenticated pursuant to the provisions of section 1733, title 28, United States Code.