Policy 1029 - Records Storage and Disposition

Section: Operating/Administrative
Policy Number: 1029
Responsible Office: Records Management/University Archives
Effective Date: 12/4/00


The ability to control records has not always kept pace with the ability to create them. This has led to an accumulation of records and intensified the problem of the disposition of some records that have outlived their usefulness. At the same time, however, it is important to be aware that the University is under various legal and regulatory obligations to retain certain records for specified time periods.

All departments throughout the University must follow an orderly and uniform process of transferring to archival storage or disposing of records no longer needed for everyday operations or frequent reference. Please call the University Archives(extension 1465) or Records Management(extension 2018) offices to effect orderly storage/disposition and to obtain information about the procedure.

No University records may be discarded or destroyed without first contacting Archives/Records Management.

The University Archives appraises, inventories, describes, and preserves records of legal, fiscal, administrative, and/or enduring historical value to the University. Records commonly transferred to the Archives include: constitutions and by-laws; minutes and proceedings; correspondence, memoranda and subject files concerning projects, activities and functions; reports; syllabi; memorabilia; University and student publications such as newsletters, journals, brochures and posters; audio-visuals including photographs; and personal papers of faculty, staff and alumni relating to the University’s work.

The Records Management Program requires that all records be surveyed and that retention periods be established before removal or destruction. Important records are those that: have administrative value as long as they assist the office to perform current or future activities; have legal value if they contain evidence of legally enforceable rights or obligations of the University, or constitute items that fulfill legal requirements; and pertain to financial transactions such as budgets, ledgers, payrolls, and vouchers.

When in doubt, do not throw it out.


St. John's University, New York
Human Resources Policy Manual