REVISED GUIDELINES FOR DISPOSITION OF DEPOSITORY DOCUMENTS
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These guidelines are based on the Instructions to Depository Libraries, Revised
2000, (here after Instructions) and on discussions with GPO staff members. They
are to be used for disposition of depository material as described in Chapter
4 of the Instructions.
Please see the List of Superseded Depository Documents for material that may
be disposed of by all Libraries. Chapter 4 of the Instructions should also be
consulted for microcopy substitution of depository material and Chapter 1 for
instructions on termination of depository status.
These new guidelines represent a significant revision of our earlier disposition
guidelines and should be thoroughly reviewed by all libraries before disposing
of any depository documents. The biggest change concerns microfiche and is designed
to make the disposition of this material easier and more efficient for everyone
involved. It should be stressed that we have been given permission to try this
new policy on a trial basis by GPO and any misapplication of this policy will
result in the immediate rescission of these new procedures.
General Rules for Discarding Depository Documents
NO DEPOSITORY MATERIAL MAY BE DISCARDED UNTIL PERMISSION IS RECEIVED FROM
You may request that libraries respond to your lists within a specified number
of days, but the Regional is not bound by those limits. Libraries may not dispose
of any documents until permission has been received from the Regional.
The Regional has priority for all documents offered on any disposition list
and no documents may be sent to any other library until permission has been
received from the Regional.
The Regional attempts to respond to all lists within a month of receipt and
in most cases the response time is much shorter. If we have not responded to
your list within a month, please contact us to verify that we have received
If the depository library wants to submit their discard lists to the Regional
on computer diskette or via the internet (email), this is permissible.
Guidelines for the Disposition of Paper and Electronic
Guidelines for the Disposition of Microfiche Documents
- All depository receipts are to be held for at least five years before requesting
permission from the Regional to dispose of them. The five years is to be measured
from the date of receipt, not the date covered or date published. Documents
received on discontinued items (by you or GPO) are subject to the same five
year retention requirement. A selective depository is not required to dispose
of documents, it is an option they have if served by a Regional.
- When disposition is desired by the selective depository, a detailed list
of publications to be withdrawn should be submitted to the Regional. It is
no longer necessary to send a copy of the list to the Superintendent of Documents.
The list should contain the Superintendent of Documents classification number,
the series title or specific title if a separate (such as titles in General
Publications series, etc.), and the holdings. Note: It is no longer necessary
to include Item Numbers on your disposition lists
- Numbered series or annuals must show the numbers or years available for
each. If the numbers or years are shown inclusively, please note exceptions.
If the numbers are complicated or in parts, please list them individually
in the holdings (ex. Geological Survey Bulletins, EPA series).
- Separates such as Bibliographies; General Publications; Handbooks, Manuals
and Guides; etc.; must be listed separately with specific titles given.
Otherwise, it would be impossible to ascertain which titles were needed
for the Regional collection. Publication dates are helpful if they can be
- Congressional hearings and prints should include the Congress and Session
to expedite our checking here since they are shelved that way in the Regional
- It is no longer necessary to limit your lists to 5 pages. We will accept
longer lists, but cannot guarantee the response time will be as quick.
- The list should be circulated to other depositories in the Region (Florida,
Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands), then to other library or educational
institutions in your area. If all copies of the list are circulated at once,
the requests should be filled on a priority basis -- Regional, other depositories
in order received, and other institutions in order received. You might prefer
mailing at different times, deleting from the list those items selected by
- Failing to find a recipient after a reasonable effort, the documents may
be disposed of in any appropriate manner. If they are sold as second-hand
books or waste paper, the proceeds must be sent to the Superintendent of Documents
with a letter of explanation. Publications of a significant nature can be
sent for inclusion in the national Needs and Offers List.
- All microfiche depository receipts are to be held for at least five years
before they may be discarded. The five years is to be measured from the date
of receipt, not the date covered or date published. Documents received on
discontinued items (by you or GPO) are subject to the same five year retention
- Selective depositories within our region may discard MICROFICHE copies of
depository documents after they have been retained for 5 years without offering
them on disposition lists.
- Selective depositories discarding large runs or sets of microfiche documents,
such as DOE microfiche or USGS Open File Reports, must receive permission
from the Regional before discarding. The Regional reserves the right to require
selectives to prepare disposition lists for this or any other type of material.
- The Regional should be contacted immediately if there is any question whether
material should be offered on a disposition list. This may be done by telephone
or other informal means
Selective depositories must continue to prepare disposition lists for paper and
electronic depository documents as directed in these guidelines.
- The Regional will continue to supply all libraries within our region with
microfiche copies of microfiche depository documents at no charge.
- The Regional will supply selective depositories in our region with claim
copies of microfiche depository documents whenever possible.
- The Regional will continue to obtain replacement copies of missing microfiche