I think this is a major announcement that should benefit genealogists. In a time when most government agencies are seeing their budgets reduced, the National Archives actually received a modest INCREASE in its annual budget. The following announcement was written by the U.S. National Archives and Records Administration:
WASHINGTON, Dec. 18 -- The National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) has received a Fiscal Year 2010 budget of $469,870,000 under the Consolidated Appropriations Act signed by President Barack Obama on Wednesday, December 16.
The overall appropriation of $469,870,000 is an increase of 2.31 percent over last year's funding of $459,277,000.
"Given these difficult economic times, we are extremely grateful to the Congress and the President for the generous FY 2010 appropriations. We will be able to continue to fund our core programs, offer the same high standard of services to our researchers and the public, and complete much-needed repairs and renovation of the Franklin Roosevelt Library," said David S. Ferriero, Archivist of the United States.
"We are particularly pleased with the historic increase in the allocation for the National Historical Publications and Records Commission," he added. "This will allow us to further support the nation's network of archives at a time when there is a critical need to make the materials available to all Americans."
For NARA's Operating Expenses for FY 2010, the President and Congress have provided $339,770,000, an increase from last year's appropriation of $330,308,000. The increase will cover the costs of inflationary increases in rent, energy, security and staff costs for NARA facilities at 44 locations around the country.
The Operating Expenses account also includes funding for 12 new entry-level archivists who will enter NARA's Archivist Development Program, as well as for personnel for the new Office of Government Information Services and the new Controlled Unclassified Information Office, which is part of the Information Security Oversight Office.
For continued development of the Electronic Records Archives (ERA), Congress appropriated $85,500,000, up from last year's appropriation of $67,008,000. This will allow further progress toward providing public access to the ERA, which eventually will allow anyone, anywhere, at any time to access electronic records held by NARA. This budget will also allow NARA to begin to establish the preservation framework for the system.
For repairs and renovations at NARA-owned facilities, the lawmakers appropriated $27,500,000. This includes $17,500,000 as the last installment for repairs and renovations at the Franklin D. Roosevelt Presidential Library in Hyde Park, New York. The Roosevelt Library is the oldest of the 13 Presidential libraries administered by NARA.
The National Historical Publications and Records Commission (NHPRC), the grant-making arm of the Archives, will receive $13,000,000, up from last year's $11,250,000. In the FY 2010 appropriation, $4,500,000 is set aside for providing online access to the papers of the Founding Fathers, as was requested in the President's budget.
The appropriations legislation also directs NARA to report to the House and Senate appropriations committees within 30 days of enactment on "information security improvements made or planned" and "to promptly inform relevant committees of jurisdiction when any formal law enforcement investigation is commenced into alleged theft of electronic or other materials which may contain personally identifying information."