State Affairs and Government

CHAPTER 42-8.1
State Archives

SECTION 42-8.1-2

§ 42-8.1-2. Definitions.

For the purpose of this chapter:

(1) "Agency" or "public body" means any executive, legislative, judicial, regulatory, administrative body of the state or any political subdivision thereof; including, but not limited to the leadership of the general assembly, chairperson in the house and senate, public officials elected or appointed and any department, division, agency, commission, board, office, bureau, authority, any school, fire, or water district, or other agency or quasi-public agency of state or local government which exercises governmental functions, any other public or private agency, person, partnership, corporation, or business entity acting on behalf of any public agency.

(2) "Archive" means an establishment maintained primarily for the storage, servicing, security, and processing of records that must be preserved permanently for historical, legal or other value and need not be retained in office equipment and space.

(3) "Archivist" means the state archivist, the director of the division of state archives.

(4) "Authenticated copies" means exact copies or reproductions of records or other materials that are certified as such under seal and that need be legally accepted as evidence.

(5) "Commission" means the Rhode Island historical records commission.

(6) "Custodian" means and includes the official custodian or any authorized person having personal custody and control of the public records in question.

(7) "Division" means the division of state archives of the department of state.

(8) "Official custodian" means and includes any officer or employee of the state or any agency, institution, or political subdivision thereof, who is responsible for the maintenance, care, and keeping of public records, regardless of whether such records are in his or her actual personal custody and control.

(9) "Person" means and includes any natural person, corporation, partnership, firm, or association.

(10) "Political subdivision" means and includes every city, town, school district, fire district, water or sanitation district, or any other special district or other quasi-public agency within the state.

(11) "Public record" or "public records" means public records as defined in chapter 2 of title 38, "Access to Public Records".

(12) "Records" means all books, letters, papers, maps, photographs, tapes, films, sound recordings, machine-readable records or any other documentary materials, regardless of physical form or characteristics, made or received by any governmental agency in pursuance of law or in connection with the transaction of public business and preserved or appropriate for preservation by the agency or its legitimate successor as evidence of the organization, functions, policies, decisions, procedures, operations, or other activities of the government or because of the value of the official government data contained therein. As used in this part 1, the following are excluded from the definition of records:

(i) Materials preserved or appropriate for preservation because of the value of the data contained therein other than that of an official government nature or because of the historical value of the materials themselves;

(ii) Library books, pamphlets, newspapers, or museum material made, acquired, or preserved for reference, historical, or exhibition purposes;

(iii) Private papers, manuscripts, letters, diaries, pictures, biographies, books, and maps, including materials and collections previously owned by persons other than the state or any political subdivision thereof;

(iv) Extra copies of publications or duplicated documents preserved for convenience of reference;

(v) Stocks of publications.

(13) "State archives" or "archives of the state" means those official records that have been determined by the archivist to have sufficient historical, legal, or other value to warrant their continued preservation by the state, and have been accepted by the state archivist for deposit in his or her custody.

(14) "State archives" means an establishment maintained by the division for the preservation of those public records that have been determined by the division to have sufficient historical or other value to warrant their continued preservation by the state and have been accepted by the division for deposit in its custody.

(15) "Trust fund" means the archives trust fund.

History of Section.
(P.L. 1989, ch. 341, § 1.)