This authority provides approval to Ministers and government institutions for the destruction of TRANSITORY RECORDS.
The authority for this document is Section 12(1) of the Library and Archives of Canada Act, which states: "no government or ministerial record, whether or not it is surplus property of a government institution, shall be disposed of, including by being destroyed, without the written consent of the Librarian and Archivist or of a person to whom the Librarian and Archivist has, in writing, delegated the power to give such consents."
This authority applies to all government institutions and ministerial records as defined in the Library and Archives of Canada Act.
Record, as defined in Section 2 of the Act, "means any documentary material other than a publication, regardless of medium or form."
TRANSITORY RECORDS are those records that are required only for a limited time to ensure the completion of a routine action or the preparation of a subsequent record. TRANSITORY RECORDS do not include records required by government institutions or Ministers to control, support, or document the delivery of programs, to carry out operations, to make decisions, or to account for activities of government.
For the purposes of records disposition, there are three broad categories of government records:
Information of transitory value is found in all three categories of records. Such information needs to be retained for only a very short period of time before destruction.
Textual records that are transitory may include:
Transitory records in electronic form may exist in a variety of forms and formats regardless of data processing environments, from large centrally managed mainframes to stand-alone personal computers. The examples described below are applicable regardless of the environment.
This authority should be applied to electronic records within the context of the standard operating practices that institutions support for the effective and efficient administration of their automated information systems.
Electronic records that are transitory may include:
Electronic records entered into a system during an update process and not required for audit or legal purposes.
Electronic records of a master file or a portion of a master file that are transmitted or sent to another location.
Electronic records containing data that are manipulated, sorted and/or moved from one run (i.e. execution of a program) to a subsequent run in the process of creating or updating a master file or database.
Electronic records consisting of data that are used with a master file in the course of batch processing to create an updated master file. It excludes master files from one system that are used as transaction files in a second system.
Electronic records generated during the creation or use of a master file or database that contain information on the operation of the system except where they are required to support the integrity of the master file or database.
Electronic records consisting of routine or bench-mark data constructed or used for the purpose of testing system performance.
Electronic files copied from a master file or database where the sole purpose is toproduce hardcopy publications and/or printouts of tabulations, ledgers, registers and reports.
Electronic documents can include messages transmitted in a data communication system (e.g. Email) and/or letters, memoranda, guidelines, directives and other documents normally generated or received in an office environment.
Electronic documents that are transitory may include:
Photographic records that are transitory may include:
Moving image and sound records that are transitory may include;
Inquiries concerning the application of this approval should be addressed to the Government Archives Division, Library and Archives Canada.