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Maryland-Delaware-District of Columbia State Plan

This guide helps federal depository libraries coordinate the actions of the individual libraries that make up the Federal Depository Library System of Maryland, Delaware, and the District of Columbia in order to provide better service to our public.

Goal and Purpose

Goal: To ensure that FDLP operations are performed as successfully as possible, staffing and service hours are sufficient, and thorough and timely training is provided for depository staff.

Purpose: The federal depository libraries in the Maryland-Delaware-District of Columbia Region will provide sufficient staff to administer, maintain, and provide reference assistance for their depository collections. Federal depository libraries will provide regular and sufficient training to their staff to ensure high quality services to patrons seeking to find government documents.


Required Level of Staff:

Each library must assign sufficient staff members to carry out the required functions required of depository libraries and to act as the liaison with the library’s director and administration, other libraries, the regional library, and the Government Publishing Office.

Depository Librarian:

Each depository should aspire to hire a librarian with a master’s degree from an American Library Association accredited program, or with equivalent education and work experience, to manage the depository collection.

The primary focus of the depository librarian should be their FDLP responsibilities. Therefore, each library should provide adequate time for that librarian to attend to the full range of depository duties and tasks.

Other Depository Staff:

Each depository should have enough support staff to meet the needs of that library’s selection rate, taking into consideration the size and scope of the library and methods of organization of the collection.


Adequate training of all staff responsible for processing and reference service is essential. Libraries should make available the resources necessary for initial and regular ongoing training for staff responsible for FDLP operations.

In-service training within the library and sharing of expertise among depository libraries is necessary in order to maximize use of financial resources, organizational time, and staff.

Continuing Education

The library director of each depository library should encourage and support all staff to enhance and refresh their skills and knowledge by:

  • Attending FDLP programs and conferences such as the FDLP Academy and Training Repository, the FDLP Depository Operation Training Series (DOTS), the FDLP Coordinator Certificate Program, the Fall Federal Depository Library Conference, and the Spring Depository Library Council meeting.

  • Monitoring regularly standard tools for staying current with developments and innovations in the government information field, such as DocTech-L and GOVDOC-L, and subscribe to FDLP News & Events through askGPO.

  • Enrolling in classes and workshops presented by professional organizations, library schools, government agencies, consultants, and at other venues;

  • Joining and participating in the activities of organizations whose purpose relates to government information resources, such as the American Library Association’s Government Documents Round Table (GODORT) and American Library Association’s Map & Geospatial Information Round Table (MAGIRT), and regional library associations, such as the Maryland Library Association (MLA), the MLA Government Information Interest Group (GIIG), and the Delaware Library Association (DLA).