FAQs for GRS 5.7, Agency Accountability Records
Download all Frequently Asked Questions of Individual GRS Schedules in a PDF
QUESTION RELATED TO ITEM 010
1. Why do you exclude reports related to agency mission activities and consolidated final agency reports submitted to OMB or Congress?
We exclude these records from the GRS because, depending on the agency’s mission, they may be of permanent value for historical research. That is why agencies must schedule them individually.
QUESTION RELATED TO ITEM 040
2. Does this item cover records created in the course of processing and submitting reports?
No. This item covers only the records administering a report’s framework: why it exists, why it must be prepared and submitted, what subject matter it must include, how it is formatted, and similar parameters. In other words, these are records about the report’s existence and structure. This item does not cover the final product (a prepared and submitted report) or the process whereby a particular report is assembled. Agencies must schedule those records based on the report’s subject matter and the value of its information to both the agency’s business processes and the Federal Government’s historical record.
QUESTIONS RELATED TO ITEM 060
3. Why do you exclude records created and held by the Merit Systems Protection Board and the Office of Special Counsel from this item?
Handling cases described by this item is the mission of the Merit Systems Protection Board and the Office of Special Counsel. Agencies must schedule mission records independently. GRS 5.7, item 060, covers only case files created at other agencies, where they are administrative records.
4. Why do you exclude from this item records of whistleblowing cases handled internally within an agency?
The administrative and historical value of allegations of illegality, waste, corruption, or other misconduct reported to authorities within an agency varies from one agency to another, so cannot be defined by a single universal retention period. For example, honesty and good behavior of staff is expected in all agencies, but is mission-critical in law-enforcement and investigative agencies. Agencies must therefore individually schedule records documenting internal handling of misconduct allegations.
QUESTION RELATED TO ITEM 080
5. Why do you exclude records received by General Services Administration, Office of Management and Budget, and the Office of the Federal Register from this item?
The records concern the mission of those three agencies. As with all mission records, they must be appraised and scheduled for their business and historical value by the agencies themselves.