3/22/2017 USDA Records Disposal Freeze Email Notification to the University -
USDA Records Disposal Freeze Notice

From: [] On Behalf Of Scarantino, Laura B.
Sent: Thursday, March 22, 2018 5:45 PM
To: '' <>
Subject: FW: USDA Records Disposal Freeze NOTICE
Importance: High 

Greetings Everyone 

There was a form letter sent out to all entities that are recipients of  USDA awards about a Records Freeze. Our letter is attached, and will also be available on the SPA & SPAC websites.   

This freeze affects a very small population of UMB “direct” and “pass-through” USDA awards. Eight awards in total, of which 2 are currently active. The 5 departments that were affected have been notified directly. If you are receiving notifications from your prime sponsors that you have funds subject to this freeze, please read your agreements carefully because this did not apply to all USDA departments. 

Most of UMB’s grants come from NIFA – WHICH ARE NOT AFFECTED BY THIS FREEZE.  

Under the Secretary for Research Education and Economic within the USDA  there are 4 distinct departments

-Agriculture Research Service (ARS)

-National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA)

-Economic Research Service (ERS)

-National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) 

Only ARS, ERS and NASS grants are subject to the freeze  All of the 8 grants mentioned above were from ARS.   

SPA and SPAC want to ensure that that the departments are aware that any future award negotiations with ARS, ERS or NASS  will also be subject to the freeze until UMB receives notification from USDA that it has been lifted. This applies on all prime USDA and pass-through awards. Plus UMB will be required to notify any sub recipients enlisted on these awards. 

According to the letter UMB must follow the record retention requirement set forth in the applicable regulation or administrative requirement REE-425R, 2 CFR 200 (SEC 200.333(a) and (b))  or 7 CFR 550

No records (paper and/or electronic) can be destroyed or deleted. In addition, no agency official can authorize the destruction of any such records. You will be notified when this records disposal freeze is lifted. 

Federal statutes defines a record as follows as, "All books, papers, maps, photographs, machine-readable materials, or other documentary materials, regardless of physical form or characteristics, made or received by an agency of the United States Government under Federal law or in connection with the transaction of public business and preserved or appropriate for preservation by that agency or its legitimate successor as evidence of the organization, functions, policies, decisions, procedures,operations, or other activities of the Government or because of the informational value of data in them. Library and museum materialmade or acquired and preserved solely for reference or exhibition purposes, extra copies of documents preserved only for convenience of reference and stocks of publications and of processed documents are not included." (44 U.S.C. 3301) 

Please reach out to your representative in SPA or SPAC if you have any questions.