Record Retention Schedules for Political Subdivisions
Wyoming Statutes 9-2-410 states: “All public records are the property of the state. They shall be delivered by outgoing officials and employees to their successors and shall be preserved, stored, transferred, destroyed or disposed of, and otherwise managed, only in accordance with W.S. 9-2-405 through 9-2-413.”
Wyoming Statutes 9-2-401(a)(v) and 16-4-201(a)(v) defines “public record” to include the original and all copies of any paper, correspondence, photos, forms, books, electronic records, etc., or other documents, regardless of physical form or characteristics, which have been made or received in transacting public business by the state, a political sub-division, or an agency of the state.
Instructions and Information
- These retention schedules give your agency the legal authority to destroy records, if it chooses, after the records have been retained the established time period as approved by the State Records Committee. (W.S. 9-2-411) If you have reason to keep a record longer, by all means keep it. Just remember, it costs money to store and manage records.
- Records scheduled as permanent can be kept in your custody or transferred to the State Archives. They may be microfilmed and the hardcopy destroyed after checking the film quality and transferring the camera negative to the State Archives. All records can be digitized/scanned or microfilmed. Non-permanent records can be destroyed immediately after quality checking the electronic record or microfilm, providing the new storage media’s life cycle will allow access to the records/information until the retention period is met. After digitizing permanent records, retain the hardcopies permanently or transfer them to the State Archives, and the legal chain of custody will not be broken and future access will be guaranteed.
- To destroy records listed in this manual, be certain that dates of the records are in line with their retention schedules. Even though the records are scheduled for destruction, records dated prior to 1920 should not be destroyed until they have been thoroughly appraised for historical significance by Archives staff. In the case of those offices organized after 1920, all records created during the first ten years of its existence should be retained permanently or until they have been appraised for historical value. Though the earliest records of all offices are of greatest importance, later records should also be screened when they are considered for destruction. Age is not the sole criteria for permanent retention.
The elected or appointed officials and their staff are responsible for working with the State Archivist to preserve all historical government records, and our archivists can assist you with the historical appraisal of them. Records Appraisal Criteria can be found on the State Archives website. To arrange for onsite assistance or for any discussion about the records including transferring them, please call us at 777-7826.
- All records that may be used in a financial audit/examination must be kept until after such audit/examination is completed and the audit report is issued, and all audit findings are resolved. It is recommended that all records that would be used in an audit, be retain five (5) years. Until the specific retention schedules are revised, the existing time period can be applied if the above actions have been satisfied.
- Retain all records that may be used in pending or current litigation until its settlement. Policies and procedures should be put in place to prevent the destruction of records that would be used in litigation.
- Records should be properly destroyed. They may be buried, shredded, or recycled.
- Administrative reorganization or changes in record systems may alter the time period records need to be kept, or you may have to establish a new retention schedule. Contact the State Archives to changer or add a retention schedule.
- By law, any agency adopting a microfilm system or any reproductive process shall consult with this department. Approval of any reproductive process must be obtained if original permanent records are being received electronically, destroyed, or returned to the patron. Agencies are required by law to comply with microfilm standards established by the State Archives, and also send the master camera negative to the State Archives. Micrographics Standards and listings of local government microfilm in the Archives, are on the web site or can be obtained by writing us. (W.S. 9-2-406).
Any questions may be directed to the following personnel:
Records Retention Schedules & Electronic Records
Mike Strom, Supervisor
Permanent Records & Micrographic Services
Curtis Greubel, Supervisor
Record Retention Schedules
Cities, Counties and Community Colleges and selected State agencies including Records Management Manual.
The following Retention Schedules are in PDF format.
If you have questions concerning the above retention schedules, about record retention schedules not yet listed on this page, or to obtain a digital copy of the retention schedules effecting your office please contact:
Wyoming State Archives
2301 Central Avenue
Cheyenne, WY 82002
FAX: (307) 777-7044