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RELEASE: Bill to Protect State Records Signed into Law - AB 469 Improves Transparency and Preserves Sensitive Information

For immediate release:

SACRAMENTO– Assembly Bill 469, authored by Assemblywoman Cottie Petrie-Norris (D-Laguna Beach), passed both houses of the State Legislature with unanimous support and has been signed into law by Governor Gavin Newsom. This bill will ensure that state records are consistently and properly managed by requiring each state agency to appoint a Records Management Coordinator.

“This bill will improve transparency, better protect sensitive information and ensure state agencies are consistently preserving California’s state records,” commented Assemblywoman Petrie-Norris, Chair of the Assembly Committee on Accountability and Administrative Review. “It is clear that we must address inconsistent implementation of the training within state agencies in order to avoid the mismanagement of vital and sensitive state records.”

Currently, the State Records Management Act does not specify a training plan or reporting schedule for agencies to process and report on document storage.  Due to inconsistent implementation, the Secretary of State has seen historical records mistakenly destroyed or confidential information mistakenly made public. AB 469 will reduce the state’s risk in mismanaging records and help ensure departments treat their records appropriately to enable greater public access.

“The proper storage of state records is vital to maintaining public transparency and preserving California’s history,” said California Secretary of State Alex Padilla, sponsor of AB 469. “AB 469 will ensure that all state agencies receive training from the California State Archives to learn current best practices for records management.”

AB 469 is supported by the California Historical Records Advisory Board and the Society of California Archivists.