Federal Records Management

FAQs for GRS 1.3, Budgeting Records

Download all Frequently Asked Questions of Individual GRS Schedules in a PDF



1.  In the past, NARA instructed agencies to schedule these records individually.  Why do you now include them in the GRS?

The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) collects final budget submissions from nearly all agencies in one place.  OMB schedule DAA-0051-2015-0001, signed by the Archivist on August 3, 2017, authorizes permanent transfer to NARA of these Government-wide records from that single source.  As a result, records at all other agencies (except those mentioned in question 1.3/4) are now scheduled as temporary under item 010 and agencies no longer need to individually schedule them starting with FY 2017 records.  The item is not retroactive because OMB was not able to confirm that it held complete sets of prior fiscal year budget submissions for the entire Federal Government. 


2.  My agency already scheduled its budget formulation, estimate, justification, and submission records independently.  Does this schedule supersede my agency’s schedule?

Yes and no.  This schedule supersedes your agency schedule for records FY 2017 and forward, but your schedule should still be used for records FY 2016 and prior.


3.  My agency has not scheduled these records independently.  Can this GRS just cover my records for prior years as well?

No.  If your agency never scheduled these records, FY 2016 and prior records remain unscheduled.


4.  Why do you exclude some agencies from using this item?

A very few agencies have authority to bypass OMB and submit their budget requests directly to Congress.  Since NARA cannot accession these agencies’ budget submissions from OMB, such agencies are excluded from using this item. Records officers should consult internally with their general counsel and chief financial officer to determine if their agency falls into this category under OMB Circular A-11 or A-19.




5.  Items 010 and 020 have the same retention period.  Why are they not just one item?

The items are separate because their associated work processes are separate.  In particular, they do not happen concurrently, but rather one after the other.  Records under item 010 are created in the process of putting a draft budget together and submitting it to OMB.  Records under item 020 are created over the course of expending appropriations.




6.  The difference in retention between these two items is negligible.  Why not merge them and keep everything for years?

Item 031 material, retained for 3 years, is largely composed of quarterly reports.  Not only are they voluminous, but they build on one another, compiling data year-to-date.  The amount of material that accumulates in 031 is three times that found in 030, and the smaller volume in 030 incorporates the most important information found in the larger set of records.  Both items’ retention statements include flexibility to retain longer if records are required for business use, so agencies desiring to maintain all reports as a single unit can do so. Agencies seeking a more robust disposal of no-longer-necessary and duplicative records will find item 031 useful.




7.  Why are these items separate?  Their retention periods are almost identical.

All records in both items are created in local offices, divisions, or programs within an agency.  They are separate items because the records’ owners—formally established budget offices (040) and other offices (041)—use them for different business purposes.  A budget office compiles records from all local offices to formulate the budget request for an entire agency; local offices manage only records relating to the office’s own financial footprint.  The items’ retention period are not precisely identical. Item 040 retains records for 2 years after a budget is approved. Item 041 records can be destroyed when 2 years old, regardless of when the budget is approved.

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