“Washington, DC…I have had the very difficult task of identifying an 8.2% cut in the National Archives budget for fiscal year 2012 from the FY 2011 President’s budget request of $460,287,000. The decisions that we have had to make have not been easy. The National Archives budget is primarily made up of personnel and facilities, both of which are essential to our continuing operations and to our commitment to provide the highest level of service to our various constituencies.

After much analysis and deliberation, we have determined that in order to reach our target, among the steps that we will have to take is the closing of The National Archives at Boston—Pittsfield Annex, effective October 1, 2011.

This facility which houses National Archives microfilm publications and has public access computers served approximately 1,800 researchers during the last fiscal year. I regret that this decision will affect two long-time Archives employees who run this center. They will be offered positions at other facilities within the National Archives system and we will pay for their relocation expenses. The National Archives loyal cadre of volunteers who supported our research services at the Pittsfield Annex will also be missed.

While these cuts will be painful, I am confident that the staff of the National Archives stands with me on our commitment to continuing to provide the highest service to our customers nationwide.

Background

The Pittsfield Annex is one of two National Archives facilities in Massachusetts. Located in the Berkshire Mountains, it is approximately 100 miles from the National Archives at Boston.

The Pittsfield Annex does not have any original archival records and houses only NARA microfilm collections, the largest being the U.S. census. The microfilm census records have had a dramatic reduction in the number of researchers due to online access to census records. The closure of the Pittsfield Annex will not impact the records center operation in Pittsfield

The National Archives at Boston has original records relating to the history Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, and Vermont.”

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