University Libraries

Government Publications

Unit Description

The James E. Brooks Library serves as a depository for United States federal and Washington State government publications.  Materials received cover all subject areas and include multiple formats.

News and Events

CWU Libraries Government Publications is proud to work with our students to offer a program about the 2020 Census on October 9, 2019 at the Hal Holmes Community Center from 7:00 - 9:00 p.m.  This program is geared around what students want to know about how the decennial census affects them and why they should care about a full participation. For more information about this program, please contact Aimée C. Quinn or call 509-963-1592.

Mission Statement

The Federal depository at the Brooks Library serves several integrated yet unique communities. As part of an academic institution, the library is dedicated to serving the information needs of the CWU students, faculty, and staff. Our primary goal is to the success of our students thus the depository collects materials which support the University’s core programs. The depository collection also emphasizes statistical materials, congressional, and legal materials which support disciplines across the curriculum. We collect in all forms and formats to meet the needs of all constituents.

Within our obligations to the university, the depository equally serves the government information needs of the Eighth Congressional District and the local indigenous communities of Central Washington. We work with local leaders to maintain an awareness of the geographic and demographic characteristics of the surrounding areas and provide federal and state publications which are of need and interest to this user group.

Mission Statements:

Washington State Government Publications Collection

The Washington State depository designation dates back to 1965, yet many historical materials have been received as gifts.  Brooks Library is a full depository for Washington State documents.

The legal requirements for the Washington State Depository Library may be found at:

Washington Administrative Code, Ch. 34, Section 16

Revised Code of Washington Chapter 40.06

U. S. Government Publications Collection

Brooks Library at Central Washington University was legally designated as a federal depository library in 1962.  It remains the only federal depository library supporting Washington State’s Congressional District eight. As a Selective Depository Library with an average receipt rate of 37%.

The majority of current federal materials are available on the Internet, generally in PDF format, with records to these publication links loaded into the online library catalog usually within 48 hours of receipt.  

A significant portion of both the map and microform collections are also received through the FDLP (Federal Depository Library Program) and added to one of these two collections due to physical format.

Legal designation as a depository library requires that the handling and maintenance of all government information received through the FDLP complies with regulations. Instructions for depository libraries are stated in both the United States Code, Title 19 and in the Government Publishing Office, Superintendent of Documents, Legal Requirements and Program Regulations of the Federal Depository Library Program.

Interlibrary Cooperation

In cooperation with the regional depository, the Washington State Library, and with all other selective federal depository libraries within the state of Washington, Brooks library participates in the Washington State Plan for Federal Depository Library Service (2010).

Collection Development Plan

Government Publications follows guidelines for the development of federal depository documents as stated on the FDLP Desktop

The current plan discusses how material is selected for the collection, reviewed to be withdrawn from the collection, areas of strengths, as well as areas for growth.

Selection Responsibility

The  Government Publications Librarian, in consultation with Library Faculty Liaisons, the Collection Strategist, and the Dean of Libraries selects depository publications, reference materials, and maps.  Suggestions from faculty, students, staff, and the general public are greatly encouraged.  Once selected, the librarian regularly reviews holdings as formats, instructional needs, and regulations change.

Subject Areas

To support the Central Washington University curriculum, primary subject foci of the federal depository collection currently are:

  • agriculture
  • criminal justice and law enforcement
  • economic and social conditions
  • education
  • geology and mining
  • natural resources
  • public health
  • legislation and American history
  • foreign relations and diplomacy

However, as the only depository library for central region of Washington State, it is the responsibility of the Brooks Library to collect materials from all federal government agencies on all topics.  Depository items that are not received at CWU may be borrowed from other depository libraries within the state.

Brooks Library developed a comprehensive collection of both historical and current U.S. congressional publications, presidential documents, federal regulations and agency reports to better fulfill our mission due to  generous gifts and donations which supplement the depository collections.

Access Policy

The primary goal for the unit is to ensure access to government information materials for all users. Collection use  is encouraged by integrating records for government publications and maps, in all formats, into the Brooks Library’s Catalog.

In-house displays, research guides, social media, as well as instruction sessions serve to promote the depository collections. Everyone is welcome to come in and use the collections any time the building is open. Regular hours may be found on the online calendar using the drop down menu and go to "Documents".  Should someone need to access the depository collection after staff have gone home, they may wish to make a request at the Circulation Desk on the first floor.

Circulation Policy

All non-reference paper and CD/DVD titles within the depository collections circulate to borrowers on and off campus.  Due to the need for specialized equipment, microforms do not circulate; however,we will make the appropriate equipment available to view, print, or scan non-circulating material during departmental hours.  Maps usually do not circulate without permission from the Government Publications Librarian.

Please check with the Government Publications Librarian if you require any non-circulating item for an extended time outside the library.  Community members may purchase a borrower's card at the Circulation Desk on the first floor in order to borrow materials, login to computers, and print.  There are computers available which do not require any login credentials.  Please ask at the service desk on the first floor for assistance.

Electronic Titles

The 21st century brought in the need for both the federal and state governments to migrate their publications to electronic  format.  In the second decade of the 21st century, these governments began digitizing materials and creating digital documents.  In order to ensure the community will always have access to these materials, we developed a separate Internet Use Policy specifically for government information.  Brooks Library collects electronic and digital government information in the same manner using similar criteria as tangible.  We welcome suggestions from faculty, staff, students, and the community.  If you have any questions, please contact the Government Publications Librarian.

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