Government Documents

General Information
Lehman College has been designated a U.S. Federal Government Depository Library since 1968. Selective federal government publications are made available for public access.

Government information may also be obtained through online databases. Government publications are regularly received on topics relating to recent legislation, Congress, Supreme Court decisions, the Census, economics, history and public health.

For questions, contact Rebecca Arzola, 718-960-8831, or

Access Policy
The mission of the United States Government's Depository Library Program is to provide the public with free access to government information and publications. By law, any citizen has the right to access the Leonard Lief Library Government Documents Collection. It is our goal to promote use of government information within the community. When visiting the Government Documents Collection, consult library hours and bring some form of government photo ID (Driver's license, passport, etc.) to gain access to the Library. Patrons are encouraged to make an appointment with the Government Documents Librarian to ensure quality reference service and availability of the Documents Room.

The Library supports and adheres to the public access policies outlined in The Federal Depository Library Handbook (FDL Handbook), revised 2009, developed by the U.S. Government Printing Office (GPO):

Your library is not required to serve users who do not have a depository-related need to be in the library. Under a strict interpretation of the statute, a user from outside of your library's principal user group may be limited to using only depository information resources.

The public may not exploit the use of depository information resources as a pretext to circumvent your library policies on the use of materials purchased or licensed for the use of your library's primary clientele.

Security concerns of your library may lead local library administrators to implement policies to safeguard facilities and personnel including those of the depository. Permissible actions include:

  • Asking users for identification
  • Asking users to sign a guest register
  • Asking questions that screen users to verify that the library houses the documents relevant to their information needs, and even escorting users to the depository collection

These actions in no way violate the responsibility of your depository library to provide free access to the depository collection by the general public under 44 USC 1911.

Collection Description

The Government Documents collection is comprised of federal, state, and local publications. The majority of the documents can be accessed by searching the CUNY+ catalog. It is classed and shelved with the rest of the Library's collection.

Print, microform, and electronic resources:

Ready Reference - Many important and heavily used documents such as the Statistical Abstract of the United States and Occupational Outlook Handbook are located in our Documents Reference, which is located on the southeast side of the first floor.

Documents Reference - This section contains many historical reference works, as well as the Catalog of Government Publications, Code of Federal Regulations, and Congressional Record Indices.

Microfiche - Located in the Government Documents in Room 121

Microfilm – Census information from 1790-1960 is located in the Periodicals in Room B-03, Concourse level

Periodicals Collection - Government serials are shelved in alphabetical order along with other serials in the Periodicals Room on the Concourse level.

Database Access - Government Documents are available electronically through library databases including AGRICOLA (from the National Agricultural Library), Green FILE, and Military and Government Collection.

Internet Access
- Government Documents including the Budget of the United States, Code of Federal Regulations, Congressional Bills-Documents-Hearings-Records and Reports, Economic Report of the President, Federal Register, GAO Reports, Government Manual, History of Bills, Public and Private Laws and Statutes at Large are available from GPO's Federal Digital System (FDsys) at .

Government Documents are also accessible from non-GPO (Government Printing Office) government websites. Government information may be obtained through American Fact Finder, Child Welfare Information Gateway, Country Studies, Education Statistics at a Glance, ERIC, InfoShare, MedLine Plus, Occupational Outlook Handbook, PubMed, U.S. House of Representatives, U.S. Senate.
Government Documents may be searched through – the U.S. Government’s Official Web Portal.


Last modified: Aug 20, 2014