Summary: H.R.3987 — 98th Congress (1983-1984)All Information (Except Text)

Bill summaries are authored by CRS.

Shown Here:
Passed House amended (08/02/1984)

(Measure passed House, amended)

National Archives and Records Administration Act of 1984 - Title I: Establishment of an Independent National Archives and Records Administration - Establishes the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) as an independent establishment in the executive branch to be directed by the Archivist of the United States. Transfers the National Archives and Records Service of the General Services Administration (GSA) to NARA.

Requires the Archivist to be appointed by the President with the advice and consent of the Senate. Allows the President to remove the Archivist from office. Requires the President to communicate the reasons for such removal to each House of Congress.

Directs the Archivist to appoint a Deputy Archivist. Sets forth the administrative duties and authority of the Archivist. Requires the Archivist to submit to Congress an annual report concerning the administration of functions of the Archivist and NARA.

Transfers to NARA and the Archivist the functions, duties, and authority of GSA and the Administrator of General Services concerning: (1) documents and the Administrative Committee of the Federal Register; (2) supplemental use of Federal exhibits and displays; (3) specified Presidential archival depositories; (4) congressional printing and binding; (5) the Federal Register and the Code of Federal Regulations; (6) the distribution and sale of public documents; (7) the National Archives Trust Fund Board; (8) the National Historical Publications and Records Commission; (9) records disposal; (10) archival administration; (11) presidential records, materials, and recordings; (12) the review of agencies' information management activities; (13) public law, Constitutional amendments, and the United States Statutes at Large; (14) electoral credentials and certificates; (15) official territorial papers; and (16) Indian records placed with the Oklahoma Historical Society.

Divides general responsibilities concerning records management between the Archivist and the Administrator. Directs the Archivist to provide guidance and assistance to agencies to ensure adequate and proper documentation of Government policies and transactions and to ensure proper records disposition. Directs the Administrator to provide guidance and assistance to agencies to ensure the economical and effective utilization of space, staff, equipment, and supplies for records management. Requires the Archivist and Administrator, to the extent practicable, to promulgate identical regulations governing the inspection of records the use of which is restricted for reasons of national security or the public interest.

Amends the Presidential Recordings and Materials Preservation Act to provide that regulations relating to public access to certain tape recordings and other materials involving former President Richard M. Nixon cannot take effect until the expiration of 60 legislative days after their submission to each House of Congress.

Title II: Administrative Provisions - Limits the fee that the Archivist may charge for making or authenticating copies of materials to the amount necessary to recover actual costs, which may include increments for the estimate replacement cost of equipment. (Currently such fee may exceed such costs by up to ten percent.)

Authorizes the National Archives Trust Fund Board to: (1) use the services and personnel of NARA and other agencies to assist the Board in performing its functions; and (2) appoint necessary personnel, subject to laws governing appointments in the competitive service. (Currently, the Board may appoint employees without regard to civil service laws.) Directs the Board to submit to Congress an annual report on its operations and on the money, securities, and personal property received and held by it.

Authorizes the Board to authorize the transfer of funds to NARA to be expended on an archival or records activity approved by the Board or to accomplish the purpose of a gift or bequest. Permits the Board to solicit gifts or bequests. Requires that moneys received for the Fund be deposited within ten working days.

Requires the Archivist to initiate action through the Attorney General for the recovery of agency records unlawfully removed or for other legal redress against persons who remove or destroy agency records if the agency fails to take such action within a reasonable period of time after being informed of its necessity by the Archivist. Directs the Archivist to report any such agency failure or any refusal of the Attorney General to initiate such action to the appropriate committees of Congress.

Directs the Archivist to establish detailed criteria for determining whether material should be classified as agency records. Grants the Archivist access to any material made or received by an agency to determine whether the agency is in compliance with regulations governing records disposal. Permits the Archivist to authorize an agency to dispose of records only after publishing notice of, and providing an opportunity for public comment on, such disposal.

Title III: General Provisions - Sets forth the effective date of this Act. Provides that any spending authority provided under this Act shall be effective for any fiscal year only to the extent provided in appropriations Acts.