A coalition of "consumer and good government groups, librarians, environmentalists, labor leaders, journalists, and others," OpenTheGovernment.org, has found that secrecy by the Bush administration continues to expand. The top twenty-five government departments in terms of Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests all continued to carry serious backlogs. In 2007 there was a two percent increase in FOIA requests over 2006, as well as a decrease in the number of documents declassified. "These trends indicate that citizens will have to wait even longer to know what their government is doing," said Patrice McDermott, Director of OpenTheGovernment.org. Government secrecy is also expensive for taxpayers. "The report estimated the government spent almost $200 to maintain secrets for every dollar the government spent declassifying documents, a five percent increase over the 2006 ratio." McDermott added, "The current administration continues to refuse to be held accountable to the public. In recent years, polls have shown that a growing number of Americans believe the federal government is secretive -- terrible news for our democracy. Until we restore openness and accountability to the federal government, it will be impossible to win back the public's trust."
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