Library DrawingThe CONNector

NOVEMBER 2000Volume 2 Number 4

Government Printing Office Budget Cuts

Nancy Peluso, Library Specialist

Photo Of Staircase In LibraryFrancis J. Buckley, Superintendent of Documents, delineated how the Government Printing Office (GPO) will operate within a much reduced appropriation in an August 2000 letter addressed to administrators of the 1,330 libraries participating in the Federal Depository Library Program. He indicates that, "GPO will be obliged to curtail some traditional products and services... Therefore, we are implementing a policy on distribution to Federal depository libraries that will accelerate the transition to a primarily electronic program. This transition affects all 18 depository libraries in Connectict including the State Library which serves as the Regional Depository Library for Connecticut and Rhode Island. As an operational guideline, U.S. Government publications will be furnished to Federal depository libraries solely in online electronic format unless:

  • There is no online electronic version available from the publishing agency.
  • The online version is incomplete.
  • The online version is not recognized as official by the publishing agency.
  • The online version is unreliable; e.g., the content is replaced or overwritten without notice.
  • The tangible product is of significant reference value to most types of FDLP libraries.
  • The online version poses a significant barrier to access; e.g., the product is very difficult to use, thus impeding access to data or content.
  • Computer Graphic The tangible product is intended to serve a special needs population; e.g., publications in Braille or large print.
  • There is a legal requirement to distribute the product in tangible format.
  • The costs associated with disseminating electronically exceed those for the tangible product, a situation that may arise with certain CD-ROM software licensing or fee-based online services.

Depository libraries can use excellent finding aids that have been developed by GPO. Their list of New Electronic Titles is updated weekly. The Browse Topics service arranges U.S. government sites by subject,  GPO continues to catalog electronic titles so hotlinks to those items are included in the Connecticut State Library catalog.

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