STATE ARCHIVES AND RECORDS COMMISSION
Minutes of the Quarterly Meeting
December 10, 1998
Department for Libraries and Archives
The State Archives and Records Commission met December 10, 1998, in the Board Room, Kentucky Department for Libraries and Archives (KDLA). Richard Belding presided, in Chairman Nelsons absence.
Members present: Dr. Thomas D. Clark, representing the University of Kentucky; Paul F. Coates, representing Citizens-at-Large; Dr. William J. Morison, representing regional colleges and universities; Shelia E. Heflin, representing the Kentucky Library Association; and Dr. Jack D. Ellis, representing Citizens-at-Large.
Representatives present: Lou DeLuca representing the Office of the Secretary, Education, Arts and Humanities Cabinet; Evelyn Lockwood, representing Don Cetrulo, Director, Legislative Research Commission; Victor Fox, representing A. B. Chandler, III, Attorney General; Ron Jones, representing Stephen N. Dooley, Commissioner, Department of Information Systems; Stephanie Robie, representing Ed Hatchett, Auditor of Public Accounts; and Jim Deckard, representing Joseph E. Lambert, Chief Justice, Kentucky Supreme Court.
Members not present or represented: Dr. Linda E. Johnson, representing Citizens-at-Large; Carolyn N. Murphy, representing local governments; Cheryl Jones, representing Citizens-at-Large; Crit Luallen, State Budget Director, Governors Office of Policy and Management; and Dr. Melba Porter Hay, representing the Kentucky Historical Society.
Public Records Division staff present: Richard N. Belding, Director, Public Records Division; Diana Moses, Manager, State Records Branch; Darrell Gabhart, Manager, Local Records Branch; Dr. Frank Levstik, Regional Administrator; Gerald Thompson, Regional Administrator; Lena Jones Turner, Regional Administrator; Jerry Carlton, Regional Administrator; Jim Terry, Records Analyst; and B. J. Webster, Administrative Secretary.
Guests present: Linda Janes, City of Louisville.
For the record, Belding called for introductions of Commission members.
Minutes of the previous Commission meeting were approved on a motion made by Dr. Clark, seconded by Mr. Fox. The motion carried.
The order of the agenda was changed to accommodate the guests present.
NEW OR REVISED RETENTION SCHEDULES
City of Louisville Checklist
Dr. Frank Levstik was the regional administrator working on this new schedule. The series being scheduled are: L4553 to L4571; L4573 to L4577; L4579 to L4591. The total number of series is thirty-seven.
Levstik said that the work to create schedules for the City of Louisville was nearing an end. Levstik hopes to have schedules for the Revenue Department and the Police Department ready for submission in March 1999.
Levstik explained that the Checklist consists of general or common records and that similar schedules have been approved for other local entities. The citys Law and Audit Department has reviewed the schedule, including the schedule for the Metro Parks listed below. After the Archives and Records Management Advisory Committee meeting on December 3rd, Levstik received a call from the City of Louisville asking that a change be made to the schedule prior to its submission to the Commission. Series L4582, relating to requests to inspect records, is actually an obsolete record; the agency no longer creates the form associated with the Open Records requests. The series will be reflected as "closed" in the retention schedule. By scheduling the record as a closed series, the agency will be able to dispose of the records accumulated thus far.
Dr. Ellis made a motion to adopt this new schedule, with the change noted above, seconded by Mr. Fox. The motion carried.
City of Louisville Louisville and Jefferson County Metro Parks
Levstik was the regional administrator working on this new schedule. The series being scheduled are: L4592 to L4605, a total of fourteen records.
Levstik said that, although the schedule is for Louisville and Jefferson County Metro Parks, the city also operates Otter Creek Park, in Meade County, and others in the Louisville metropolitan area. Belding asked about maintenance of public cemeteries. Levstik said that the Parks agency does have responsibility for maintenance of many of the cemeteries. In small cities the function is often the responsibility of the city clerk.
Dr. Clark made a motion to adopt this new schedule, seconded by Dr. Morison. The motion carried.
Lena Jones Turner and Jerry Carlton were the regional administrators working on this new schedule. The total number of series being scheduled is 113. The series numbers are listed in the order in which they appear in the schedule: L0899; L0891; L0871; L0881 to L0822; L0886; L4734; L0889; L0875; L0897 to L0898; L0894 to L0895; L2313; L0888; L1009; L4735; L1210 to L1211; L4788; L4736 to L4738; L0924; L0933 to L0934; L0944; L0936; L4739 to L4744; L2921; L2928; L4745 to L4746; L0914; L4747; L0938; L4748; L0954; L0948 to L0950; L2917; L2631 to L2632; L0966 to L0967; L0969; L3949 to L2950; L0970 to L0971; L4749 to L4750; L0978; L4751 to L4754; L0906 to L0912; L0989; L4755 to L4756; L0988; L0987; L4757 to L4761; L2920; L2941 to L2946; L4762 to L4766; L0945; L4767 to L4772; L1138; L1142; L1154; L4779 to L4780; L1153; L4781 to L4782; L1160; L4783 to L4784 to L4787.
Turner said that this schedule represents a revision of the previous City Model records retention schedule, which was approved by the Commission in April 1982. The schedule is applicable to cities of the second to sixth classes. The cities of Winchester and Lawrenceburg were the primary sites used during the revision process. The City Model does not include local law enforcement, which will be scheduled under the Local Government Model below. Other areas slated for future inclusion in the Local Government Model are fire departments, parks and recreation, and planning and zoning.
Belding said that several schedules on the agenda represent considerable work on the part of the Local Records staff to review, revise, and consolidate series and, where applicable, eliminate redundancies, to improve the usefulness and applicability of the schedule by local government officials.
On a question by Dr. Ellis, Turner said that each series in the previous City Model was reevaluated to ensure its current applicability. Many of the retention periods previously approved were not changed, while others were. In addition, series were added, deleted or consolidated, as needed.
Dr. Ellis made a motion to adopt this new schedule, seconded by Mr. Coates. The motion carried.
City Model Financial Records - Taxation
Jerry Carlton was the regional administrator working on this schedule change. The series being changed is L4793, Personal Property Tax Assessment Books. It will be included in the City Model, explained above. Although a firm date as to when cities stopped creating the books has not been determined, Carlton said he has not located any books that date after the early 1970s. The change reflects the eleven-year retention period currently being used for tax-related records.
In the case of the City of Louisville, which has a large volume of the books, Levstik said that the more recent ones were dated in 1974. Levstik also said that the City of Louisville had removed approximately 270 books from its active storage space, in anticipation of the change in retention.
Mr. Fox made a motion to adopt this schedule change for inclusion in the City Model, seconded by Dr. Clark. The motion carried.
Local Government Model Public Safety Law Enforcement
Turner and Carlton were the regional administrators working on this new schedule. The series being scheduled are L4654 to L4724, a total of 71 records.
Carlton said that law enforcement records had originally been included in the City Model, approved by the Commission in April 1982. The law enforcement section of that schedule has been removed to the Local Government Model, to better reflect recordkeeping across the state. Many of the law enforcement functions, including recordkeeping and records creation, have been streamlined and have become more uniform across the state, making it possible to complete a model schedule for all agencies. Included in the schedule are retention requirements for city police, county police, constables, sheriffs offices and special police. All cities (2nd class through 6th class) and all other law enforcement agencies, except the Department of State Police, cities of the first class (Louisville) and the Lexington/Fayette Urban County Government (LFUCG), may use this new schedule.
The revised schedule was completed in cooperation with the LFUCGs police department. Carlton said that the Chiefs of Police in Florence and Carrollton, Kentucky, and the Director, Police Chiefs Association, had reviewed the revised schedule. Carlton said that he had received positive feedback from them, which was very beneficial.
Gabhart explained that Local Records staff had developed, over the past two or three years, schedules that will be consolidated into the Local Government Model. Gabhart anticipates the consolidated schedule, which will contain sections for departments that are common across counties and may cross city/county government lines, such as ethics boards, ambulance services, fire departments, and water districts, will be ready for submission to the Commission in March 1999. The Local Government Model will be used in conjunction with specific city and county schedules.
Carlton said that the law enforcement section of the Model did not pertain to records created by the City of Louisville, Jefferson County, or the Lexington/Fayette Urban County Government. These areas will have schedules specific to their governments. The law enforcement schedule is applicable to cities of the second to sixth classes.
Levstik said that in the area he serves, in North Central Kentucky, there is a multiplicity of law enforcement agencies, which will be served by the law enforcement model schedule. For example, county police departments, in the Northern Kentucky area; the Public Safety Commission, in Boone County, which is an amalgamation of all the law enforcement agencies in the area; the Dixie Police Authority, in Kenton County; the City of Ludlow, also in Kenton County, which serves the Northern Kentucky Airport; and the airport police, in Louisville.
Dr. Clark asked about the confidentiality of many of the law enforcement records. Gabhart said that records whose access is restricted are identified in the schedule with a "C" and the specific legal citing which restricts their access.
Dr. Morison made a motion to adopt this new schedule, seconded by Dr. Ellis. The motion carried.
Public School District Model
Gerald Thompson and Dr. Frank Levstik were the regional administrators working on this schedule revision. The revision of the schedule has been in progress for the past two years. The schedule is comprised of the Central Office, General Records, and Schools (Pre-School to 12). The total number of series for the Central Office is 310. The series are listed in the order in which they appear in the schedule: L1776 to L1797; L1799; L1801; L1848 to L1852; L1854 to L1866; L1868 to L1869; L1871 to L1872; L4432 to L4433; L4435 to L4443; L4499; L1873 to L1875; L4289; L4380; L4382 to L4388; L4390 to L4393; L4400 to L4409; L1893 to L1896; L1898 to L1901; L1903 to L1909; L2007; L1897; L1892; L1910 to L1913; L1921 to L1923; L1925 to L1933; L2579 to L2581; L2635; L2755; L3119 to L3120; L3122; L1934 to L1935; L1937 to L1938; L1940 to L1941; L4410 to L4417; L1942 to L1955; L1957 to L1969; L1971 to L1992; L2308; L2578; L3115; L4475; L1993 to L2000; L4418 to L4421; L4431; L2638 to L2644; L4395 to L4399; L2638 to L2644; L4395 to L4399; L2001 to L2006; L3121; L2008 to L2019; L2021 to L2028; L2030 to L2034; L2754; L2760; L2847; L2924; L3117 to L3118; L3137; L2036 to L2043; L2045 to L2046; L2048 to L2061; L2759; L2813; and L2064 to L2078.
The total number of series for the General Records Section is 129. The series are listed in the order in which they appear in the schedule: L1802 to L1824; L1828; L1830; L1833; L1835; L1837; L1838 to L1844; L1846 to L1847; L2300 to L2304; L2343; L2582; L2816 to L2817; L2951 to L2954; L1800; L2102; L2108; L2355; L2445; L2464 to L2471; L2481 to L2482; L1876 to L1891; L2307; L2360 to L2362; L4494; L1914 to L1919; L2403; L2079 to L2101; L2309 to L2310; L3116; and L2992 to L3001.
The total number of series for the Schools Section is 197. The series are listed in the order in which they appear in the schedule: L2326 to L2329; L2316 to L2320; L2330 to L2335; L2337 to L2339; L2345 to L2351; L4467 to L4472; L4497; L4444 to L4458; L2363 to L2373; L2375 to L2399; L3021 to L3022; L3024 to L3027; L4462; L2401 to L2402; L4459 to L4460; L4477; L4422 to L4430; L2385; L2407 to L2408; L2410 to L2416; L2420 to L2424; L2426 to L2433; L2437 to L2443; L2447 to L2452; L2454 to L2456; L2636 to L2637; L2769; L3158; L4461; L4463 to L4466; L4473 to L4474; L4476 to L4479; L4481 to L4483; L4485 to L4493; L4495 to L4496; L4498; L3302 to L3020; L2324; L2457 to L2459; and L2461 to L2462.
The total number of series in the Public School Model is 636.
Belding said that the Public School District Model is an example of the effort addressed earlier to consolidate, review, and revise series, and to bring together in a common schedule records of a related function. Belding informed the Commission members of the communication between Public Records Division staff and the Department of Education about the electronic dissemination of the schedule to the individual school systems, through its information technology capacities. Electronic dissemination should make the schedule more readily accessible to users at the local level, as well as significantly reduce the cost of distribution.
Belding commended Thompson and Levstik for their work on this project over the past two years.
The revised schedule replaces the Elementary School and Jr. High/Middle School schedules, which were approved in July 1976; the Central Office schedule, which was approved in June 1988; and the High School schedule, which was approved in March 1989. The Public School Model contains sections for Central Office, General Records, and Schools (Pre-School to 12). School administrators are very excited about the revised schedule and anxious to receive it, according to Thompson. The size of the schedule has been reduced, through consolidation. Several new series have been added, especially in the area of records resulting from the enactment of the Kentucky Education Reform Act (KERA).
Levstik was responsible for identifying and scheduling records related to the programs listed below. The new series were created after KERAs implementation in 1990.
Family Resource and Youth Centers
The aim of the centers is to provide students and their families with resources and support to tackle issues affecting learning, such as poverty, family difficulties and substance abuse. The centers, which operate in schools in which twenty-percent or more of the students receive the free lunch program, identify and coordinate community services. The programs offered by the centers are administered by the Cabinet for Families and Children and individual school districts.
Extended School Services
This program focuses on providing extra instructional time for those students who need more time and assistance to achieve academic success. The assistance is provided before the beginning of the school day, after school, weekends, and during the summer.
School districts are required to provide developmentally appropriate half-day preschool programs for four-year old children, who are at risk of educational failure. Parents may choose not to send their children to the program, which is voluntary.
Technology is used to help students learn and connect students and teachers with other resources to stimulate and improve learning. While major emphasis has focused on computer installation, educational technology includes telecommunications, interactive video, film, cable television, and satellite and microwave communications. The use of technology also will help in the collection of information about individual school districts.
Under KERA, continuing education and teacher training was expanded to prepare teachers for the changes in school law and to provide expanded funding to train teachers in better methods of instruction.
KERA provided for the establishment of individual school councils, with responsibilities for making most policy decisions in the respective school. The decisions relate to school staffing, instructional materials, support services and curriculum. Participants in the school councils include principals, teachers and parents.
Curriculum and Assessment
KERA established student performance goals as a primary focus of education. It changed the way in which students are assessed on performance-based assessments, by using skills and knowledge acquired, rather than multiple choice tests. KERA also requires the creation of student writing and mathematics portfolios.
The revised schedule was prepared in cooperation with the Hardin County Board of Education and the Warren County Board of Education. The Department of Education also reviewed the schedule prior to its completion.
Dr. Clark asked about the degree to which local school districts have used the schedules in the past. Levstik said his more recent experience is very positive. The Jefferson County Board of Education, which has an Archives and Records Center, does an annual purge of its records, destroying those that can be disposed of and transferring to storage those that need to be retained for extended periods. School districts in the North Central area, such as Kenton, Campbell, Hancock, Grayson, and Bardstown Independent regularly ask for assistance in properly managing their records. Levstik said that compliance with the requirements of the schedules was recent, mainly within the last four or five years. Carlton, whose area is the eastern portion of the state, regularly receives calls from superintendents asking for assistance in the management of records. Carlton believes the electronic dissemination of the Model will enhance its application.
Dr. Ellis asked if, under KERA, more records were being retained in the schools, for example the school based decision-making records. Levstik said that those records were being retained at specific school sites, and will amount to an enormous amount of material. In some cases, according to Levstik, there is duplicate information that is forwarded to the Department of Education, but there are numerous categories of records that will remain on site.
Thompson remarked that he had seen more interest statewide, not just in the destruction of records, but in securing and preserving permanent records. More and more superintendents, according to Thompson, are designating funds to be used to microfilm permanent records. Thompson believes that the impact of KERA has caused many school districts to take a heightened interest in records management, as there is recognition that the districts will literally be "buried" in records unless there is a concentrated effort to better manage them. Levstik said that the student portfolio was an example of a KERA-created record that, in terms of sheer mass, has overwhelmed many school districts. Throughout the school districts in Kentucky, thousands of cubic feet of the writing portfolios are being created. KERA legislation did not take into consideration the number of student folders that would be created, or the records management impact their creation would have.
Dr. Clark asked about the amount of re-entry into these and other school records, and whether they contain historical documentation. Levstik said that the majority of requests for information are related to the student academic record, which is a permanent record. As has been mentioned, many school districts are seeking alternative formats, such as microfilm, to ensure long term preservation of the information.
Carlton said that even before the enactment of KERA, school systems generated more paper than any other government organization, mainly due to state and federal compliance requirements. As an example, Carlton said he has been assisting the Pike County school system in a cleanout of its outdated files. The destruction total should be approximately 1,000 cubic feet, when the project is completed. By destroying the outdated files, Pike County will be able to utilize the storage space as a records center, and will be better able to provide access to its files. Gabhart said that the renewed interest in records management by school districts is related to lack of storage space. There are many school districts that have very good records management programs, including records centers and archives. Many, as well, spend considerable funds to microfilm their permanently valuable records.
Belding said that one of the realities that both state and local records staff deal with is the issue of regular turnover of knowledgeable staff in agencies and the need for increased education efforts. Records management is not a discretionary activity, but a state-mandated activity. It is as much a part of doing business as managing payrolls, staff, budgets, etc. Records are at the heart of every administrative activity that is carried out by agencies and if the records arent properly managed severe consequences can result. It is a risk management issue. There has been any number of lawsuits involving school districts, where documentation was not present to prove actions taken. Belding also reiterated the importance of records management activities having the support of top level management in agencies. If that level of support is missing, then records management will not be as effective. Records management is an activity that requires a high level of support, on a continuing basis, as recognition of its centrality to the business function of the public agency.
On an earlier question by Dr. Clark concerning the application of the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), Levstik said that student records are most affected by the federal law. If the records are in the possession of the school district, according to the U.S. Department of Education, the records are not open to public inspection. Levstik said there are records that are over 100 years of age whose access continues to be restricted. If the school system provided access to the public to records whose access is restricted under FERPA, it would be at risk of losing federal funds. Carlton said that more school records than not fall under FERPA restrictions, because of student names, addresses, and other personal information not related to the academic record. Thompson said that there is a growing movement to lift the restrictions on access to student records that are over 72 years of age. Levstik said that because FERPA is regulatory and not statutory, there is a possibility that restrictions could be relaxed.
Ms. Heflin asked about the disposition of writing and math portfolios, which provides for their destruction after one year. Heflin acknowledged, as a mother, the hard work that goes into the creation of the portfolios on the part of the students and asked whether the documents could not be returned to the students, as an alternative to their destruction. Thompson said he thought that would be a decision to be made by the respective school system. Heflin felt that with the disposition as currently written, the schools would not consider the alternative of returning the portfolios to the students. Gabhart said that normally public records that are eligible for destruction are not given to private citizens but, since the portfolios are the creation of the students, that perhaps they should be released to them. Clark asked what the portfolios contained. Belding said they contain examples of the work of the students at different levels, in different areas. There are narratives, short stories, poetry, biographies, etc.
Belding suggested that the schedule be approved and that Local Records staff explore with the school district community the idea of returning the portfolios. Dr. Morison said that under FERPA, parents of minor children have the right to access and possess certain records, in this case, portfolios. Fox compared the portfolios to medical records of a client held by an attorney. Such records are considered to belong to the client. The proprietary interest of the pupil and his parent or guardian far exceeds any other interest the Commission should have, according to Fox.
Dr. Morison made a motion to adopt this new schedule, and that staff should explore the possibility with school systems of returning portfolios to students, seconded by Ms. Heflin. The motion carried.
Gabhart asked that the record reflect the contributions of Dr. Marilann Melton, who worked closely with Thompson, for her many hours of consultation and editorial comments during the input and editing phases of this project.
Morison asked that the minutes also reflect Dr. Clarks motion to recommend the schedule to the Commission for its approval, during the Archives and Records Management Advisory Committee. The motion read as follows: Dr. Clark said that, in a state of absolute surrender, he was venturing into the pathless forest of bureaucracy and moving, in the committees state of helplessness, that the revised schedule be recommended to the Commission for its approval, seconded by Dr. Curry (with the same caveats). The motion carried.
Ms. Janes, representing the City of Louisville, expressed her thanks to Levstik for his assistance in helping the City to revise its retention schedule. Janes said that she had enjoyed the process of developing schedules and learned a lot about records management, as a result.
City of Louisville - Department of Community Services
Levstik was the regional administrator working on this schedule change. The series being changed are L3903, Completed Complaint Reports, from ten years to two; and L3906, SUMMA-4 Reports, from two years to ten.
After a brief explanation of the change by Levstik, Mr. Coates made a motion to adopt this schedule change, seconded by Dr. Ellis. The motion carried.
County Model County Clerk Legal Instruments Real Property
This schedule and the one that follows were considered as a group.
Carlton was the regional administrator working on this schedule change. The series being changed is L3062, from seven years to eleven.
The change in retention was necessitated by a change in KRS 134.420 (1) and KRS 134.470 (1), passed during the 1998 session of the General Assembly. KRS 134.420 (1) provides that the state and each county, city, or other taxing district shall have a lien on the property assessed for taxes due, for ten years following the date when the taxes become delinquent. KRS 134.470 (1) provides that no action may be brought to enforce a certificate of delinquency until one year after its issuance, and action shall be instituted within ten years after the expiration of that one year period.
County Model County Clerk Tax Records
Carlton was the regional administrator working on this schedule change. The series being changed is L1455, Unpaid Tax Bill and Certificate of Delinquency, from seven years to eleven. Please see explanation above.
Mr. Coates made a motion to adopt this schedule change and the one preceding it, seconded by Dr. Ellis. The motion carried.
Transportation Cabinet Department of Highways Division of Construction
Moses was the records analyst working on this schedule revision. The series being added to the schedule is 04797, Kentucky Contractor Pay Estimate System, previously series 321. The series being changed are: 04793, Construction Project File; 04794, Project Plan File; 04795, As-Built Plan and Profile File; 04796, Cross Section and Structure Sheet File; 04798, Field Packet File; 04799, Radiographic Film and Ultrasonic Report File; and 04800, Shop Drawings for Bridge Construction. The series being deleted are 323, 324, and 327.
The statutory organization for the Cabinet is set forth in KRS Chapter 174. KRS 174.010 created the Cabinet and KRS 174.020 174.100 outlines its various organizational components and administrative duties. The Cabinet is responsible for maintaining and improving the delivery of transportation services in the state.
The major organizational units within the Cabinet are: the Office of the Secretary, the Department of Administrative Services, the Department of Fiscal Management, the Department of Rural and Municipal Aid, the Department of Vehicle Regulation, the Office of General Counsel, and the Department of Highways. Other bodies attached to the Cabinet are the Kentucky Motor Carrier Advisory Committee, the Kentucky Bicycle and Bikeway Commission, and the Railroad Commission.
The Department of Highways was established by Executive Order 83-72 and confirmed by the 1984 General Assembly. It is headed by a commissioner and is responsible for the construction, reconstruction and maintenance of the states primary road system. The Department also includes the State Highway Engineer and the twelve Chief District Engineers. The five organizational units of the Department are Program Management Staff, Highway District Offices, the Office of Project Development, the Office of Construction/Operations, and the Office of Intermodal Planning.
The Division of Construction is headed by a director and is responsible for activities relating to the construction phase of highway projects.
Moses explained that most of the changes were to dispositions for the various records, to allow their destruction or transfer to other units after the final state voucher is paid. Series 04793, Construction Project File, is transferred to the Division of Accounts after the final state voucher is paid. The Division is responsible for the maintenance of the official record. At the point of transfer, construction project files are merged with Accounts financial record of the same projects. The files are then retained for three years and audit (state and federal). Series 04795, As-Built Plan and Profile File, is transferred to the Division of Design after verification of all pay quantities, where it is retained permanently. The Public Records Division microfilms all as-built plans.
After a brief discussion, Dr. Ellis made a motion to adopt this revised schedule, seconded by Dr. Morison. The motion carried.
Belding expressed the appreciation of the Department for the work of Dr. Roy P. Peterson, former Secretary of the Education, Arts and Humanities Cabinet, who passed away in November. Dr. Peterson worked very hard in support of the efforts of the Department to secure a building addition, and made it the Cabinets number one capital construction request.
It was through Dr. Petersons efforts that the Department was able to schedule a visit by Governor Patton the day after the 1996 election. Governor Patton, along with five of the cabinet secretaries and several members representing legislative leadership, took a lengthy walkthrough inspection of the Coffee Tree facility and the State Records Center, located at 851 East Main Street. Belding said that Governor Pattons visit to the Department to learn firsthand the nature of its business and the need for a building addition, was the first by a Governor in his more than nineteen years with the agency. With the exception of Governor Patton, the members of the group remained, after the walkthrough, for a forty-five minute presentation on the rationale for the building addition.
Dr. Clark made a motion that a resolution recognizing the contributions of Dr. Peterson be drafted for presentation at the next meeting of the Commission, seconded by Mr. Coates. The resolution would be forwarded to Dr. Petersons family. The motion carried.
At the September meeting of the Commission, it was recommended that the Department develop a better means of communication with the eight public universities, particularly as relates to continued development of the State University Model Records Retention Schedule. To that end, Belding announced that a listserv had been established, in cooperation with the University of Kentucky, to provide an electronic means for communicating with each of the universities. The members of the listserv are: Weston Thompson, University of Kentucky; Dr. Bill Morison, Records Officer, University of Louisville; Margaret Merrick, University of Louisville; Karen McDaniel, Records Officer, Kentucky State University; Dr. Coy Harmon, Records Officer, Murray State University; Charles Hay, Records Officer, Eastern Kentucky University; Marian Winner, Records Officer, Northern Kentucky University; Larry Besant, Records Officer, Morehead State University; Clara Keyes, Morehead State University; and Sue Lynn Stone, Records Officer, Western Kentucky University.
Belding informed the Commission members that staff is working on the framework of a transition publication, in follow up to Septembers meeting, to assist members of an outgoing administration in understanding what should occur with the records created during their terms. The publication would provide a step by step process, so that records disposition does not become an eleventh hour event. Several years ago, the Legislative Research Commission developed a transition manual for gubernatorial administrations, which will be a very helpful model.
The next item of business was a discussion of the building modifications that will occur at the Coffee Tree facility early in the spring, to improve the heating, ventilation and air conditioning system. The work will involve the installation of additional heating units in various areas of the building, on exterior wall areas, where there have been extremes of temperature. The additional units will help to stabilize the wall conditions, where there are exceptionally cold areas or the potential for condensation. The work will occur on all three floors of the building. In the Archives Center, shelving units on exterior walls will need to be disassembled and moved off site, and then returned and reassembled when the work is completed. Work has already begun to move records from the Archives Center to the State Records Center. The records being moved are more appropriate for storage in the Records Center and will not be returned to the Archives Center. The relocation of the records to the Records Center will provide space in the Archives Center that is needed to accommodate the renovation work. Belding said that in two days, staff moved more than 1,600 cubic feet to the Records Center, of the 6,000 expected to be relocated. The work to move the remaining cubic feet will occur over the next few weeks. The records being relocated are case files, from the former Cabinet for Human Resources. The Cabinet for Families and Children will be responsible for payment of the storage fee. As a result of the move, additional shelving will need to be requested for the adjunct Records Center facility.
Dr. Clark raised the issue of the weeding of records, particularly gubernatorial records, which can occur prior to transfer to the State Archives Center. Belding said that a conscientious effort had been made by staff to promote more visibly the obligation of agencies, under KRS 171.640, to adequately document their essential transactions, policies, and procedures. Activities that are documented in one agency, such as the Governors Office, may also be documented in another state agency. Staff look for other sources of documentation for the same events and decisions, in other areas of state government, to help alleviate the problem.
In response to Coates comments regarding indices, Belding made reference to the Departments web site, specifically its catalog of State Archives holdings. The electronic tool is much improved over the use of paper finding aids. As implementation of the new Cuadra system expands and more records are added to it, including retention schedules and descriptions of series, there is the potential for an astounding amount of material to be available to researchers, in a cross-indexing environment, that has never been accessible in that way before. This is a major undertaking that will not be accomplished in the short term.
Belding addressed the issue of official correspondence of the Attorney Generals Office, which was raised by Mr. Fox during the September meeting of the Commission. The issue revolved around whether material a deputy or assistant Attorney General creates, under the signature of the Attorney General, is considered to be official correspondence, since it is often filed in a litigation case file or investigative file, rather than in a correspondence file. Belding explained that correspondence that is filed in a file other than a correspondence one would carry the same retention requirements as the series into which it is filed. Foxs basic question was whether correspondence he signed, on behalf of the Attorney General, which is "official" documentation for the agency, falls into the category of official correspondence. Belding explained that such correspondence would be categorized as official correspondence.
Belding said that there were also issues raised at the September meeting with regard to disposition instructions for official correspondence created by constitutional officers. Belding informed the Commission members that the issue was currently being discussed with the Departments legal counsel to seek ways to appropriately decide the matter. There was also a question raised at the September meeting with regard to the Departments processing of Governors records. Belding explained that large quantities of correspondence are generally found in the records of Governors, when they are transferred to the State Archives. Belding clarified for the Commission members the appraisal activities Department staff engage in when gubernatorial records are transferred. The records are reviewed for material that may be eligible for restrictions on access. A mistaken impression was left after the September meeting, that such material is removed from the files. The material is not removed. A notation is made on the transmittals, which document the transfer of custody of the records, to reflect that confidential information is contained in the shipments. Archivists servicing the materials are then appropriately alerted to the fact that confidential material is present, so that restrictions on access are adhered to. The review of gubernatorial records by staff can be a lengthy process. As an example, Belding cited the review of Governor Wilkinsons records, which took approximately four months to complete. These activities are part of the cost of doing business, particularly in regard to the transfer of Governors records.
Belding then made reference to the administrative regulation staff in the Departments Local Records Branch recently promulgated. The regulation establishes standards for document size, margins, print size and clarity, paper quality and specified exceptions for instruments lodged for recording with county clerks in Kentucky. Work on the regulation has occurred over a period of years, with periodic success. The work has now been completed, following the normal steps involved in promulgating an administrative regulation, including hearings, invitations to comment, and the appearances before the appropriate legislative committees, to secure its approval. Gabhart then distributed copies of the letter that was sent to the County Clerks, alerting them to the January 1, 1999, effective date of the regulation. Gabhart said that an emergency change to the regulation would be made to change the effective date to March 1, 1999, or possibly later, to allow more time for affected businesses, such as banking institutions, mortgage companies, lending companies, etc., to become prepared.
Gabhart said that the regulation came about as a result of discussions with county clerks, as far back as 1991 and 1992. Many of the current provisions of the regulation were worked out with the clerks at that time. The regulation will help to solve the problem of illegible documents that are presented to the clerks for recording, such as deeds, mortgages, and leases. One exception to the regulation is the recording of wills, which are acceptable regardless of the size or type of paper. Other exceptions include maps, drawings and plats. The regulation does stipulate that, in the case of maps and plats, a 3 x 3 space in the bottom right hand corner of the document that is free of lines, will be available for the Clerks certification stamp. There also is a stipulation that says clerks must accept for recording any document accepted or mandated by another state, federal government, or foreign government.
Gabhart said that many of the documents currently presented for recording cannot be read, are second or third generation copies, or, in the case of mortgage papers, contain very small print that is difficult to read. In many cases, there is no place for the Clerks certification stamp, which is to be placed on the documents. Also, as more and more offices are making use of electronic technology to manage records, the regulation will help to ensure that legible copies of documents are received that can be scanned or microfilmed, without loss of information.
In response to a question from Belding, Gabhart explained that there is a statutory provision for the filing of the "middle matter" of a mortgage, lease, or similar document, which is generally in a standardized format. The material can be filed under the individuals name. Each additional lease or mortgage would only require the filing of the front and back pages, with the "middle matter" being attached by reference.
Belding then turned the meeting over to Louis DeLuca, representing the Education, Arts and Humanities Cabinet, regarding the Departments request for an addition to its Coffee Tree facility. DeLuca said that one of the more difficult aspects to the request is to get it passed out of the Capital Projects Advisory Committee as a high priority, which has not been achieved as yet. DeLuca said that it will be important to secure the support of the committee members, as well as work with the Department of Military Affairs, the Secretary of States Office, the courts, and others who agree with the Departments request and would benefit from its being a priority. DeLuca said that this would not be an easy task, as the agencies the Department would work with have their own priorities.
Coates asked if there was any possibility of securing funds for building design work. DeLuca said that he did not know of any way to secure such funds. The Chief Information Officer for the state, Aldona K. Valicenti, understands, according to DeLuca, that paper records will continue to be created well into the next millennium, although electronic recordkeeping is expected to replace many of the states manual systems.
Securing the support of Ms. Valicenti for the building addition will be very important to the fate of the Departments request, DeLuca believes. DeLuca said that the common thinking is that the need for the building addition will go away, as more and more electronic systems replace manual ones. Belding said that Valicenti understands the need for and the place of an archives and records management function that manages a mixed media environment. Valicenti is in the process of implementing a state government-wide model of how information technology should be managed, how it should be deployed, how those who are involved should interact, and to whom they should report. Belding said that Valicentis model is a contrast to information technology models of the past.
In response to a question about what the Department has done to plan for the electronic environment, Belding said that Department staff has regularly been part of the Kentucky Information Resources Management Commissions staffing committees that have dealt with electronic records, imaging and information policy development. The issue of whether there is a resident facility for the storage of electronic records, or a data- warehousing scheme, is still being discussed. Also in response to a question, Belding said that the Department had not accepted regular transfers of electronic records. In most cases, agencies have continued to maintain electronic records that have continuing value on their existent systems, with direction from Department staff about their obligations to ensure the forward migration of the information or, in certain environments, to provide a backup in some other medium, such as microfilm. Moses said that electronic systems are scheduled in the same manner as other recordkeeping systems. Automated systems are identified, described and their value determined so that appropriate retention periods for the information can be proposed. According to Moses, the majority of electronic records transferred to the Department are for security purposes.
In response to a question from Dr. Clark about the plan for the building addition, Belding said that a program description that outlines the functional requirements needed to carry out the work of the Department would be developed. The plan would specify the square feet needed for the building, identify the type of lighting, identify the type of heating and air conditioning system needed, as well as provide information about the various activities carried out by the Department. It would also include information about possible cooperative use of the facility with other agencies, such as Military Affairs and the Secretary of States Office. This type of plan has been presented to the Capital Planning Advisory Board during previous six-year planning cycles. As to the electronic records issue, Belding said that the Department has received endorsements for the past three planning cycles from the Kentucky Information Resources Management Commission, which identified the building addition as a high priority project. A key part of the building addition would be devoted to an imaging backfile conversion center, as an adjunct to the Departments micrographics center. The building addition is intended to help meet the transition from paper-based systems to electronic ones, as the state moves into the new millennium.
There followed more discussion about the building proposal and the approach the Department would take during the new year.
Belding adjourned the meeting at 12:15 p.m.
KDLA Home Page