Glossary of Terms

Glossary of Records Management Terms for Vermont Public Agencies

Agency/Department Head: Establishes, maintains, and implements an active and continuing program approved by the Vermont State Archives and Records Administration for the effective management, preservation, and disposition of records, regardless of their physical form or characteristics, for which that head is responsible (3 V.S.A. § 218).

Appraisal: The identification, classification, and analysis of all public records, regardless of physical form or characteristics, to determine their value and ultimate disposition, based upon their: current administrative, legal, and fiscal use; evidential and informational content; arrangement and condition; intrinsic value; and relationship to other records (3 V.S.A. § 117).

Archives or archival records: Public records which have continuing legal, administrative, or historic value (3 V.S.A. § 117).

Authenticity: The quality or condition of being authentic, trustworthy, or genuine.

Availability: The accessibility of information in a timely manner.

Disposition Order: An order issued by the Commissioner of Buildings and General Services or a predecessor pursuant to 22 V.S.A. § 454 authorizing an agency to destroy a public record provided that certain requirements have been met. Orders were issued between the years 1938 and 2008.

District office: An office located in an administrative district in order to provide services on a regional or local level (3 V.S.A. § 4002).

Electronic Record: A record created, generated, sent, communicated, received, or stored by electronic means (9 V.S.A. § 271(8)). See also: Public record.

Information: Data, text, images, sounds, codes, computer programs, software, databases, or the like (9 V.S.A. § 271(9)). See also: Public record.

Information processing system: An electronic system for creating, generating, sending, receiving, storing, displaying, or processing information (9 V.S.A. § 271(12)). See also: Recordkeeping system

Public record: Any written or recorded information, regardless of physical form or characteristics, which is produced or acquired in the course of agency business (1 V.S.A. § 317).

Recordkeeping system: A system of coordinated policies and procedures that enable records to be collected, organized, and categorized to facilitate their management, including preservation, retrieval, use, and disposition. Systems may be manual or electronic.

Records liaison: A division/district level staff member appointed by a records officer to assist in carrying out the agency/department’s records management program.

Records management: The systematic identification and management of public records to assure their authenticity and accessibility from creation to ultimate disposition (3 V.S.A. § 117).

Records officer: A staff member designated by the head of an agency or department to carry out the agency/department’s records management program (3 V.S.A. § 218).*

Record schedule: A manual, directive or policy containing descriptions of and instructions for retention, access, management and disposition of records that is approved and issued by the State Archivist pursuant to 1 V.S.A. § 317a and 3 V.S.A. § 117.

Record series: A group of similar records that are arranged according to a filing system and that are related as the result of being created, received, or used in the same activity.

Retention or legal hold: The suspension of records destruction due to on-going or pending litigation, investigation, claim, negotiation, audit, or other extenuating circumstance.

State archives: State records appraised as permanent (archival) that are transferred into the legal custody of the Vermont State Archives and Records Administration in accordance with 3 V.S.A. § 117(g)(4) after retention requirements pursuant to a record schedule have been met.

State archives and records administration program: A records management program for State government implemented and administered in accordance with professional records and information management practices and principles (3 V.S.A. § 117).

State archivist: Director of the Vermont State Archives and Records Administration who shall be qualified by education and professional experience to perform the duties of the State Archives and Records Administration Program. The State Archivist is a classified position within the Office of Secretary of State (3 V.S.A. § 117).

State records center: Low-cost, secure storage facility operated by the Vermont State Archives and Records Administration for managing inactive paper state records in accordance with record schedules approved by the State Archivist (3 V.S.A. § 117(g)(5)).

*Although 3 V.S.A. § 218 applies specifically to executive agencies and departments, constitutional officers and legislative and judicial bodies are encouraged to establish, maintain and implement active and continuing records management programs as a best practice and designate records officers accordingly. Regardless of statute, a designation of a records officer is required to transfer, store, and retrieve records from the State Records Center.

This page was last updated: 2017-05-22