Connecticut State Library
Grants to Connecticut municipalities to improve the management and preservation of local government records. Eligible project categories include inventory and planning, organization and indexing, program development, storage and facilities, and preservation and conservation.
Sections 11-8i through 11-8n of the Connecticut General Statutes authorize the creation of a dedicated fund and a grant program utilizing that fund to enhance or improve the preservation and management of historic documents.
The Office of the Public Records Administrator oversees this account and administers the grant program for Connecticut's municipalities.
As the program is funded through a fee on land recordings, the available funding for grants varies with the volume of land recordings and cannot be predicted with certainty. The grant award amounts are set each year based on the account balance and projected revenues. Targeted Grants receive priority funding from the program. Disaster Recovery Grants are offered subject to the availability of funds at the time of application.
Targeted Grants support records projects in one or more departments. Every municipality in good standing that submits a properly completed application for an eligible project by the appropriate deadline is eligible to receive a Targeted Grant from the fund.
Disaster Recovery Grants are intended to help defray records recovery costs not covered by insurance in the event of a natural or man-made disaster affecting essential, permanent, or archival records in any municipal department. Additional information on Disaster Recovery Grants is available on request from the Office of the Public Records Administrator.
The following areas of need will receive priority funding:
-Assessment of current practices in the areas of preservation, records management, disaster preparedness, environmental control, or facilities design, with recommendations for improvements.
-Improved organization and access to municipal records through improved physical order or indexing, updated records management software, or other information technology.
-Improved records management and/or historic preservation practices within municipal departments.
-Improved records storage, maintenance and security through the purchase of appropriate equipment.
-Preservation of historic documents (original, non-published public records) through methods such as microfilming, reformatting, or conservation.
Grant Categories and Projects:
Five project categories have been set in accordance with the funding priorities. These categories are designed to allow for many project options. If a single project will not require the full grant amount, the applicant should request funding for additional project(s) in any of the five categories.
1. Inventory and Planning:
Inventory and planning projects allow a town to conduct needs assessments that create a framework for developing stronger records management or records preservation programs. The State Library encourages towns to apply for one or more planning surveys as a basis for prioritizing and planning future grant projects.
Planning surveys must be prepared by approved consultants. A list of approved consultants is available on request from the grants staff.
Eligible projects include:
-Preservation survey to identify permanent/historic records and provide recommendations for a plan for records care, preservation, and access.
-Records management survey to identify official records, conduct a records inventory and develop recommendations for a plan for active records management.
-Disaster preparedness survey to develop recommendations for a disaster preparedness and business recovery plan.
-Environmental control survey to monitor, evaluate and make recommendations concerning environmental conditions in vaults/records storage facilities.
-Facilities assessment survey to evaluate and make recommendations as part of the planning for renovation or construction of vaults/records storage facilities.
2. Organization and Indexing:
Organization and indexing projects increase access to town records by improving physical order within a collection of records, providing high quality indexing or correcting previous indexing, scanning records, or providing records management software or hardware.
Eligible projects include:
-Records indexing project to improve access to a collection of historical or active public records; for example, a reindexing project.
-Records conversion project to improve access to a collection of historical or active public records; for example, a backfile conversion, scanning or codification project.
-Records processing project to organize and create finding aids for a collection of historical or active public records.
-Purchase and use of computer software to manage and improve access to a collection of historical or active public records.
-Purchase and use of information technology hardware to manage and improve access to a collection of historical or active public records; for example, scanning equipment for land records or large format printers for maps.
3. Program Development:
Program development projects advance the records management and/or historic preservation practices within one or more departments. These projects generally implement recommendations given to the town in prior planning surveys (see Inventory and Planning, above) and may be carried out with the assistance of an approved consultant.
Eligible projects include:
-Development of a records management, preservation and/or disaster recovery plan for one or more municipal departments; for example, developing a records management policy and procedures manual for the municipality, or developing a preservation plan for the municipality’s permanent and historic records.
-Implementation of a records management, preservation, and/or disaster recovery plan for one or more municipal departments; for example, a project to establish and organize an inactive records storage room, or a project to rehouse archival records.
4. Storage and Facilities:
Storage and facilities projects improve the physical environment for public records, for example, by improving records storage, security or environmental conditions.
Office or vault furnishings that are not used for records storage are ineligible for grant funding.
Facility renovation or construction expenses are ineligible for grant funding, with the exception of installation or upgrade of HVAC systems for records vaults.
Eligible projects include:
-Purchase of records storage equipment that meets current records management/archival standards for the storage of public records, such as records shelving or cabinets.
-Purchase of environmental monitoring equipment to manage or improve records storage conditions, such as thermohygrometers or dataloggers.
-Purchase of specialized cleaning equipment to maintain or improve records storage conditions, such as HEPA (high efficiency particulate air) filter vacuums.
-Purchase of security equipment for the protection of permanently retained public records, such as detection or surveillance systems for vaults.
-Installation or upgrade of a vault HVAC system to maintain or improve records storage conditions.
Preservation/conservation projects improve records longevity and security by creating backup copies for off-site storage; creating access copies to reduce the handling of originals; and addressing records deterioration and damage.
Note that if conserving a record that has not already been microfilmed, the project should include microfilming of that record.
Eligible projects include:
-Microfilming project for permanently retained public records, for example, to create off-site security copies.
-Reformatting project for permanently retained public records, for example, to reduce handling of historical records by providing use copies, or to recreate land record volumes.
-Conservation project for permanently retained original public records that are historically significant and currently at risk of loss due to deterioration or damage.
-Purchase of archival supplies for the preservation of public records, such as archival paper, records binders, disaster recovery kits or other preservation materials for municipal offices.
Specific Project Information:
Specific requirements for microfilming, imaging, vital records, and HVAC projects are described below.
1. Microfilming Projects:
The municipality is responsible for ensuring that microfilming projects meet the requirements set by the Office of the Public Records Administrator in its microfilming policy.
This policy is available online at ctstatelibrary.org/publicrecords/municipal
2. Digital Imaging (Scanning) Projects:
The municipality is responsible for ensuring that digital imaging projects meet the requirements set by the Office of the Public Records Administrator in its digital imaging policy.
This policy is available online at ctstatelibrary.org/publicrecords/municipal
3. Vital Records Projects:
The Department of Public Health requires that registrars of vital statistics notify the department prior to beginning any vital statistics records project (for example, microfilming, imaging or conservation). This requirement applies to any project involving vital statistics records, whether or not the project is funded through a grant.
The registrar must contact Jane Purtill, State Registrar of Vital Records and provide the following information: the record types and date range; the type of project; whether the work will be done by a vendor or performed in-house; and the measures that will be in place to protect the confidentiality and security of the vital statistics records.
4. HVAC Projects:
A town may apply for a Targeted Grant to cover up to 50% of the cost to install or upgrade a vault HVAC system, up to the town’s maximum Targeted Grant amount. The town must meet the following prerequisites before submitting the application:
1) The town must complete twelve months of temperature and humidity monitoring in the vault, using one of these two options:
-Use a digital min/max thermohygrometer or datalogger to collect daily minimum and maximum readings for temperature and humidity. Readings must be documented in written logs or printed reports.
-Obtain an environmental monitoring survey, which includes daily readings as well as professional analysis and reporting. This option is recommended as it will provide more complete and accurate data for use in determining system requirements and improvements.
2) The town must hire an approved licensed engineer to assess the vault, review the full year of monitoring data and any other relevant factors, and submit a report with recommendations for improving the environment, which may or may not include an upgraded or new HVAC system. If this assessment does not support installation of an upgraded or new HVAC system, the project will not be eligible for grant funding.
3) The town must submit the plans for installation of an upgraded or new system to the Public Records Administrator. The plans must meet the vault regulations and must receive approval before the project is submitted as a grant application.
The monitoring equipment, environmental survey and facility assessment described here as prerequisites are eligible for funding under Targeted Grants.
Eligible expenses are described below for each of the four budget categories.
Note that in many cases, municipalities may procure products or services available on State Contract at discounted contract prices. The Department of Administrative Services maintains a State Contracting Portal online at www.das.state.ct.us.
Municipalities are also encouraged to utilize Connecticut-based small, women, minority and disabled-owned businesses as certified through the State of Connecticut’s Supplier Diversity Program.
For consulting and conservation services, the municipality may only use vendors that have been approved by the Public Records Administrator. A list of approved consulting and conservation vendors is available from the grants staff on request.
For all other vendor services, the municipality must use vendors that are appropriate and qualified to perform the proposed services. The application must include sufficient information regarding the vendor.
It is the responsibility of the municipality to oversee all vendor work and to ensure that any problems are rectified. When using an approved consulting or conservation vendor, note that this initial review and approval does not guarantee the professionalism of the vendors nor the quality of their products or services.
Vendors may not reference the Historic Documents Preservation Program, Office of the Public Records Administrator, and/or Connecticut State Library in any hardcopy, electronic, or web- based marketing materials, advertisements, or other solicitations that they publish or distribute nor include statements suggesting that the Historic Documents Preservation Program, Office of the Public Records Administrator, and/or Connecticut State Library has endorsed the firm or its products or services.
Eligible equipment purchases include but are not limited to:
-Storage equipment such as shelving systems, map cabinets, or other storage units that meet current records management and archival standards.
-Computers and software to be used exclusively for records indexing and/or retrieval.
-Regular or large format printers, copiers or scanners to be used exclusively for records purposes.
-Environmental monitoring equipment such as thermohygrometers or dataloggers.
-HEPA (high efficiency particulate air) filter vacuum for cleaning records storage areas.
-Microfilm reader to conduct quality control tests for preservation microfilm.
-HVAC systems (see HVAC Projects, above)
Routine office equipment and furniture is the responsibility of the municipality.
Eligible supplies include but are not limited to: alkaline (acid-free) supplies; records storage boxes; archival-quality pigment ink pens; REACT•PAKsTM or other similar disaster recovery supplies; and appropriate reference books.
Refer to archival product catalogs, such as those from Gaylord, University Products, Hollinger Corporation or Light Impressions, for additional examples of appropriate supplies.
D. Town Personnel Costs
Base pay is an eligible expense, either for temporary staff or for town employees working added hours specifically on a grant project. The municipality is responsible for any additional expenses for overtime, employee benefits, or applicable payroll taxes. Grant funds may not be used to supplant funding for regularly scheduled hours or job duties as indicated in the employee’s job description.
GrantWatch ID#: 180063
The Targeted Grant award amount is determined by a town’s population as of the latest published U.S. Census figures.
For this grant year, the following maximum amounts will be distributed:
-Small Municipality (population less than 20,000): $4,500
-Medium Municipality (population between 20,000 and 69,999): $6,500
-Large Municipality (population of 70,000 or over): $9,500
Grant projects and expenditures must be completed within the contract period. The contract period begins July 1, 2018, or the date the municipality receives its copy of the fully executed contract, whichever is later, and ends June 30, 2019.
Every municipality in good standing that submits a properly completed application for an eligible project by the appropriate deadline is eligible to receive a Targeted Grant from the fund.
A municipality is eligible to apply for one Targeted Grant per year. A municipality that applies for a Disaster Recovery Grant remains eligible to apply for a Targeted Grant in the same year.
A municipality is in good standing provided that:
-The municipality has submitted the required Monthly Document Recording Reports (GP-005 rev) with the appropriate payments to the State Library.
-The municipality has met all requirements for any past grant it has received from the program. Note that a municipality may apply for a grant for the upcoming fiscal year before completing its grant for the current fiscal year, provided that it continues to meet its current obligations by the appropriate deadlines.
Any municipality that is more than two consecutive months behind in its monthly filings or has outstanding obligations for any past grant is ineligible to apply for a grant until all requirements have been met. In addition, the State Library will not release grant funds to a municipality that fails to submit the required monthly filings after a grant has been awarded.
The following expenses are ineligible for funding through Targeted Grants, even if directly related to the proposed project. Ineligible expenses include but are not limited to:
-Project expenses incurred prior to start of the contract period; that is, prior to July 1, 2018, AND the municipality’s receipt of its copy of the fully executed contract.
-Project expenses incurred after the end of the contract period; that is, June 30, 2019.
-Vendors, equipment, or procedures not acceptable to the Public Records Administrator.
-Construction or renovation of facilities, except for the installation or upgrade of vault HVAC systems (see HVAC Projects, above).
-Purchase or leasing of land or facilities.
-Leasing costs for services, equipment, software or other items that are part of the municipality’s ongoing operating expenses. Note: Leasing costs are permitted for projects with a fixed end date and for new installations of electronic land recording systems, not to exceed the first year of system expenses.
-Office furniture and equipment, such as workstations, conference tables, chairs, or other items used for routine office activities.
-Office supplies, such as pens, pencils, printer toner, town seal stamps, or other items used for routine office activities.
-Personnel costs for non-grant work.
-Prizes or awards.
Please Note: A town may apply for a Targeted Grant to cover up to 50% of the cost to install or upgrade a vault HVAC system, up to the town’s maximum Targeted Grant amount. A town must cover at least 50% of the cost of its HVAC project.
The application must be postmarked by April 30, 2018 for consideration under Cycle 1 or by September 30, 2018 for consideration under Cycle 2.
Municipalities are strongly encouraged to apply under Cycle 1 as this allows for a longer time period in which to complete the grant. A municipality may apply for a grant for the upcoming fiscal year before completing its grant for the current fiscal year.
The State Library will notify the applicant of its decision regarding the application on or before July 31, 2018 for Cycle 1 awards and on or before December 31, 2018 for Cycle 2 awards.
Note: When a Postmark Deadline falls on a Sunday or State Holiday, the deadline is the next following business day. When a Receipt Deadline falls on a Saturday, Sunday or State Holiday, mail the form in time to be received at the State Library by the prior business day.
-February 1, 2018: Grant application materials are made available to town officials.
-April 30, 2018: Postmark Deadline for submitting a Targeted Grant Application for a Cycle 1 grant.
-July 31, 2018: Cycle 1 award notifications mailed to town officials by this date. After receiving award notification, the municipality must promptly return the signed Grant Contract.
-September 30, 2018: Postmark Deadline for submitting a Targeted Grant Application for a Cycle 2 grant.
-December 31, 2018: Cycle 2 award notifications mailed to town officials by this date. After receiving notification, the municipality must promptly return the signed Grant Contract.
-April 30, 2019: Postmark Deadline for submitting an Amendment Request Form to request a change to the vendor, work plan, or budget line items, or a deadline extension. The municipality must submit the request by this date and obtain approval and an amended contract before proceeding.
-June 30, 2019: Completion Deadline. Grant projects must be completed and grant funds must be expended by this date.
-September 1, 2019: Receipt Deadline for the Project Evaluation/Expenditure Report.
Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.
Kathy Makover, Field Archivist
(860) 566-1100 ext. 303
Kathy Makover, Field Archivist Connecticut State Library
231 Capitol Avenue
Hartford, CT 06106