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 Federal government documents : Maine State Law and Legislative Reference Library

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What is a government document?
A U.S. government document is information of public interest or educational value, reproduced by the federal government in print or electronic form, and made available for public use.

Why does this library receive U.S. government documents?
The federal government has designated this library as one of 9 partial depository libraries in Maine. Partial depository libraries receive selected government documents in return for making them available to the public. The full depository library for our region is Fogler Library at the University of Maine in Orono. Learn more about the Federal Depository Library Program or view a list of participating libraries in Maine .

What types of government documents does this library select?
We select documents primarily of interest to the Legislature and the legal community. These generally include administrative decisions, laws, regulations, congressional materials and publications in the subject areas of law enforcement, taxation, education, energy, health, the environment and transportation.

Where are the government documents located?
Because we receive documents having various formats and usage, they are not all kept in one place. Most printed documents are shelved in the GOVT (Government) stacks on the mezzanine. Some documents are shelved in the Periodicals stacks on the mezzanine and others are labeled REF GOVT and shelved at the end of the Reference stacks. The Code of Federal Regulations is shelved on the first floor near the U.S.C.A. Documents in microfiche format are filed in the metal cabinets at the back of the library.

How do I identify specific government documents held by this Library?
There are a number of sources and methods available for searching and locating documents in our collection. The URSUS online catalog is one source that contains many government documents and allows for searching by title, author, keyword or subject. A reference librarian can show you how to use information displayed in URSUS to find documents on our shelves and also how to use additional sources, indexes and bibliographies.

How do I borrow government documents?
Most of our documents may be borrowed. If we don't own a document, a reference librarian can either refer your to another library or provide you with an Interlibrary Loan request form.

Can I access government information online?
The federal government is increasingly providing information via the Internet. The Government Publishing Office manages an extensive collection of resources from all three branches of government on its FDSys website, including many familiar government document titles. Our iResearch pages for Federal Government and Federal Law and Legislation provide additional links to online government information.

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