COLORADO STATE ARCHIVES
RECORDS MANAGEMENT MANUAL
The Colorado State Archives office has prepared
these general retention and disposition schedules to give state
agencies the legal standards to retain and dispose of common
records that are found in most offices. The schedules list the permanently valuable records (archival) which
should be properly protected and retained. They also provide the
timetables that will allow agency officials to dispose of records
of non-permanent value legally.
It is our hope that this publication will encourage state agencies
to annually clean out their file cabinets, storage areas and data bases by
regularly destroying obsolete and out-dated records. We encourage
offices to contact the State Archives for any specific questions
about this publication or for assistance with other information
The schedule is designed to:
- Give state agencies uniform guidelines for the retention and
disposition of common records;
- Ensure each agency retains for as long as necessary records
needed for legal, administrative, audit, fiscal,
research, historical and other requirements;
- Promote the cost-effective management of records and
- Provide the legal procedures and standards to dispose of
obsolete records and information.
Using this schedule effectively
- Before using this general schedule you are to contact your
records officer, who should coordinate all activities relating to the retention and disposition of the records. The records
officer functions as a liaison with the State Archives in administering your records management program. If you do not
know who your records officer is, contact the State Archives
at (303) 866-4900.
- Records officers should work with their agency staff to
coordinate the regular disposition and destruction of obsolete records and
information. Destruction should be carried out periodically
- at least once a year. To streamline disposition, agency staff should review their filing arrangements, establish cut
off dates periodically, and develop procedures to segregate active, inactive and obsolete files.
- Generally, records are to be destroyed when the minimum
retention periods have been met; unless they are needed to
meet specific legal requirements or are designated for
permanent (archival) retention. You are encouraged to destroy
records at the end of their minimum retention periods.
Obsolete records should not occupy expensive office, storage
or computer space.
- The titles and descriptions of record series listed in these
general schedules may not reflect exactly the titles and
descriptions you use. If you are not certain whether the
schedule applies to a specific record in your office, contact
your records officer.
State Archivist's Responsibilities
- Develop and establish standards and procedures for the
administration of the state's records and information management programs.
- Direct the appraisal, preservation and disposition of public
- Monitor, evaluate, and continually improve the state's records
and information management program.
- Provide professional assistance, counseling and services to
agencies regarding records management methods, techniques and
- Conduct training programs to assist agency records officers
and other personnel in carrying out the state's records and information
Records Liaison Officer Responsibilities
- Develop and implement departmental procedures.
- Establish and maintain an active program for the economical
and efficient management of records.
- Maintain a comprehensive, up-to-date inventory of all agency
- Review records disposition schedules annually and submit all
required changes to the State Archivist.
- Continue a records disposal program in accordance with
established disposition schedules.
- Submit a Certificate of Disposal (See Appendix) for each
agency by June 30th of each year.
- After each legislative session, report to the State Archivist
any revision in laws which may affect retention of your agency
Attorney General Responsibility
- Review and approve records disposition schedules for
compliance with legal requirements. The Attorney General will notify the State Archives, agencies or departments if
disposition or destruction of records should be delayed due to pending litigation.
State Auditor Responsibility
- Review and endorse records disposition schedules for
compliance with audit state requirements.
Return to Table of Contents.
last modified 8/1/2010