Town of Kingston, NY
Ulster County
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[HISTORY: Adopted by the Town Board of the Town of Kingston as indicated in article histories. Amendments noted where applicable.]
Public access to records — See Ch. 298.
[Adopted 5-21-2009 by Res. No. 14]
There shall be a records management program established under the aegis of the Town of Kingston and headed by a Records Management Officer (RMO), already designated as the Town Clerk, who is the official keeper of records. The Officer will be responsible for administering the noncurrent and archival public records and storage areas for the Town of Kingston in accordance with local, state and federal laws and guidelines.
The Officer shall have all the necessary powers to carry out the efficient administration, determination of value, use, preservation, storage and disposition of the noncurrent and archival public records kept, filed or received by the offices and departments of the Town of Kingston.
The Records Management Officer and/or designee shall continually survey and examine public records to recommend their classification so as to determine the most suitable methods to be used for the maintaining, storage and servicing of archival material:
Obsolete and unnecessary records according to New York State Records Retention and Disposition Schedules, thereby subject to disposition;
Information containing administrative, legal, fiscal, research, historical or educational value which warrants its permanent retention; or
Records not subject to disposition according to state law.
The Officer shall establish guidelines for proper records management in any department or agency of the Town of Kingston in accordance with local, state and federal laws and guidelines.
The Officer shall report annually to the chief executive official and the governing body on the powers and duties herein mentioned, including but not limited to the cost-benefit ratio of programs effectuated by the department.
The Officer shall operate a Records Management Center for the storage, processing and serving of all noncurrent and archival records for all Town of Kingston departments and agencies.
The Officer shall establish a Town of Kingston Archives and perform the following functions:
Advise and assist Town of Kingston departments in reviewing and selecting material to be transferred to the Town of Kingston Archives for preservation.
Continually survey and examine public records to determine the most suitable methods to be used for the creating, maintaining, storing and servicing of archival materials.
Establish and maintain an adequate repository for the proper storage, conservation, processing and servicing of archival records.
Promulgate rules governing public access to and use of records in the archives subject to the approval of the Records Advisory Board.
Develop a confidentiality policy for archival records designated confidential, provided that such policy does not conflict with any state or federal statutes.
Provide information services to other Town of Kingston offices.
Collect archival materials which are not official Town of Kingston records but which have associational value to the Town of Kingston or a close relationship to the existing archival collection. Such collecting shall be subject to archive space, staff and cost limitations and to the potential endangerment of such materials if not collected by the Archives.
Develop a procedure whereby historically important records are to be identified at the point of generation.
A Records Advisory Board shall be designated to provide advice, guidance and support to the records program. Members of the Records Advisory Board shall be in positions of sufficient authority to ensure compliance with records management practices throughout all departments. The Board shall consist of the Supervisor, the Town Clerk, the Superintendent of Highways, a representative from the Justice Court, Building Department, Assessor's Office and Tax Office. The Board shall:
Review the performance of the program on an ongoing basis and discuss needs, changes, and improvements.
Review retention periods proposed by the Records Management Office for records not covered by the State Archives Schedules.
Be the final sign-off entity as to what is or is not archival.
The Town Clerk is the legal custodian of records and shall retain custody of records deposited in the Records Center.
Records shall be transferred to the Archives upon the recommendation of the RMO, with the approval of the head of the department which has custody of the records and the approval of the Records Advisory Board.
Records may be permanently removed from the Archives at the request of the RMO or head of the department which had prior custody of the records subject to the approval of the Advisory Board.
The legal staff may take steps to recover local government records which have been alienated from proper custody and may, when necessary, institute actions of replevin.
As used in this article, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
Those official records which have been determined by the RMO and Advisory Board to have sufficient historical or other value to warrant their continued preservation by the local government.
Any documents, books, papers, photographs, sound recordings, microforms or any other materials, regardless of physical form or characteristics, made or received pursuant to law or ordinance or in connection with the transaction of official Town of Kingston business.
An area established and maintained by the Town of Kingston primarily for the storage, servicing, security and processing of records which must be preserved for varying periods of time and need not be retained in office equipment or space.
The removal by the Town of Kingston, in accordance with approved records control schedules, of records no longer necessary for the conduct of business by such agency through the removal methods which may include the disposal of temporary records by destruction or donation or the transfer of records from the Records Center/Archives for the temporary storage of inactive records and permanent storage of records determined to have historical or other sufficient value warranting continued preservation.
The transfer of records from one Town of Kingston agency to another Town of Kingston Agency.
The planning, controlling, directing, organizing, training, promotion and other managerial use and records disposition, including records preservation records disposal and records centers or other storage facilities.
Making information in records available to any Town of Kingston agency for official use or to the public.
[Adopted 5-21-2009 by Res. No. 13]
It is hereby resolved by the Town Board of the Town of Kingston that the Records Retention and Disposition Schedule MU-1, issued pursuant to Article 57-A of the Arts and Cultural Affairs Law, and containing legal minimum retention periods for municipal government records, is hereby adopted for use by all municipal officers in disposing of municipal government records listed therein.
It is hereby further resolved that, in accordance with Article 57-A:
Only those records will be disposed of that are described in Records Retention and Disposition Schedule MU-1 after they have met the minimum retention period prescribed therein.
Only those records will be disposed of that do not have sufficient administrative, fiscal, legal or historical value to merit retention beyond established time periods.