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Records are a basic tool of government administration. They provide information for planning and decision making, and they are the foundation for government accountability. Records retention and disposition are subject to direct legal requirements. This General Retention and Disposition Schedule for New York State Government Records contains guidelines for complying with legal, fiscal, and administrative requirements for records retention and provides legal authorization to dispose of common records on a regularly scheduled basis.1 It replaces earlier general schedules issued by the State Archives. These previous general schedules should no longer be used to govern the disposition of records.
The purposes of the schedule are to
- provide agencies with uniform guidelines for the retention and disposition of common administrative, fiscal, and personnel records
- ensure that agencies retain these records as long as needed for internal administration, and to meet legal, audit, and other state and federal requirements
- promote the cost-effective management of records
- provide agencies with legal authorization to dispose of obsolete records covered by the schedule on a regularly scheduled basis after minimum retention periods have been met.
The schedule was prepared by the State Archives. It has been reviewed and approved by representatives of the Attorney General and the State Comptroller and authorized for use by the State Archives pursuant to the provisions of Section 57.05, Arts and Cultural Affairs Law.
1. The retention and disposition of state records is governed by Subdivision 11, Section 57.05 Arts and Cultural Affairs Law and 8 NYCRR Part 188. State agencies may not destroy or otherwise dispose of any records unless such disposition is authorized by the State Archives, acting on behalf of the Commissioner of Education and in cooperation with the State Comptroller and the Attorney General. Under 8 NYCRR 188.10, the State Archives may issue general records retention and disposition schedules to authorize disposition of records common to some or all agencies.