Overseeing the management of the state’s public records, the Public Records Board protects the financial, legal, administrative, and historical interests of the State through the review of records schedules prepared by state agencies, including the University. All university offices must seek written approval from the PRB before disposing of any public record; approved records schedules must be reviewed and resubmitted every 10 years.
The records scheduling process enables the board to ensure that records are either preserved permanently, if they are of long-term historical value, or else retained and disposed of in the proper manner at the correct time. The Board has the authority to order the destruction, reproduction by microfilm, transfer to optical disk, or temporary or permanent retention of all public records (s. 16.61 Wis. Stats.).
Records Management, Permanent Records and Vital Records
With the Public Records Board’s authority comes other duties. The board advises and assists agency records officers in developing useful, cost-effective strategies for records management and provides methods for the disposition of non-permanent records. Using the State Historical Society and University Archives as depositories, the board assists agencies in preserving important records for permanent use.
The PRB is also responsible for identifying those records considered vital and essential in the event of an emergency, advising agencies on the preservation of their vital public records, and providing secure storage for those records (s. 166.10).
University Records Mangement as Liaison
Campus offices do not need to deal directly with the PRB, because the University Records Officer provides information and assistance in preparing records schedules to all departments and acts as a liaison between the campus and the PRB.
3All offices should submit proposed RDAs to the University Records Officer for review and approval; the Records Officer will then forward the records schedules to the PRB for final approval and notify offices of the status of their Schedule / RDAs.