Permanent Public Access
Why We Do This?
State agencies and the State Library safeguard one of Montana's most critical traditions - the public's right to know. Agencies submitting state publications make possible Montana citizens' future access to state policy as recorded in state publications.
The Montana Constitution says:
Section 9. "Right to know. No person shall be deprived of the right to examine documents or to observe the deliberations of all public bodies or agencies of state government and its subdivisions, except in cases in which the demand of individual privacy clearly exceeds the merits of public disclosure.""
Montana Code Annotated says:
22-1-213. State agencies shall notify the state library of their state publications and shall make available their state publications to the state library as provided by rule. The state library shall, if requested by the agency, reimburse any state agency for state publications required to be made available when the quantity desired will necessitate unreasonable expense to the agency. The state library shall routinely notify depository libraries of recently acquired state publications. The state library shall coordinate with state agencies and depository libraries to ensure permanent public access to state publications. The state library shall offer state publications that it removes from its collection to the Montana Historical Society, which shall determine which state publications must be preserved as provided for in 22-3-203.