Minister for Finance and Services, Dominic Perrottet, today said funding of up to $22 million for the State Records Authority announced as part of the 2014-15 Budget means that it will soon be easier for regional areas to access and view State records and archives online.
Accompanied by Mulgoa MP Tanya Davies, Minister Perrottet toured the Western Sydney Records Centre in Kingswood which includes 600 linear kilometres of records and archives.
“We don’t want records to just be preserved and then filed away, we want to bring them to life and make them accessible,” Mr Perrottet said.
“The funding will enable upgrades to key systems which provide access to existing digital content, improve online service delivery and enhance access to information about archives.”
“State’s archives are not only the cornerstone of open and accountable government, but they also protect citizens’ rights and document the history of the diverse and evolving community of NSW.”
Tanya Davies MP said the investment reflected the government’s commitment to Western Sydney.
“The residents of Western Sydney are already the big winners from the budget with more spending on health, infrastructure and frontline services,” she said.
“I’m excited that important records from our community will now be digitised and made more widely available to the rest of NSW.”
Director of State Records Authority of NSW, Geoff Hinchcliffe, also welcomed the announcement of a further four years funding for the Digital State Archives initiative, as it will allow an expansion of this innovative program which converts the State’s ‘born digital’ government records to permanent digital archives.
“The ability to accept and preserve the State’s born digital records as long-term State archive moves NSW into the forefront of the digital age,” Mr Hinchcliffe said.
State Records holds the largest collection of records relating to the history of the State of NSW and the lives of its people. These include files, photographs, maps, plans and volumes about convicts, Aboriginal people, land, agriculture, immigration, railways, courts, schools and hospitals.
State Records works in partnership with a network of six State Records’ regional repositories located at the University of Newcastle, Newcastle Region Library, University of New England in Armidale, Charles Sturt University in Wagga Wagga, University of Wollongong and Broken Hill City Library.
For more information or to view State Records online visit www.records.nsw.gov.au.