United States Government Printing Office

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Government Printing Office
US-GovernmentPrintingOffice-Seal.svg
Official seal
US-GovernmentPrintingOffice-Logo.svg
Logo
Agency overview
Formed March 4, 1861
Jurisdiction Federal government of the United States
Headquarters 732 North Capitol St. NW
Washington, D.C.[1]
Employees 1,920[1]
Annual budget US$126.2 million (2012); approx. US$135 million (2011)[1]
Agency executive Davita Vance-Cooks, Public Printer of the United States[2]
Parent agency United States Congress Joint Committee on Printing
Website gpo.gov
Footnotes
[1]

The United States Government Printing Office (GPO) is an agency of the legislative branch of the United States federal government. The office prints documents produced by and for the federal government, including the Supreme Court, the Congress, the Executive Office of the President, executive departments, and independent agencies.

In December 2014 an omnibus spending bill funding US federal government operations was passed which included a provision changing the name of the GPO to Government Publishing Office. Following signature by the President the change will take effect in 2015.

History[edit]

GPO was created on June 23, 1860, by Congressional Joint Resolution 25. It began operations March 4, 1861, with 350 employees and reached a peak employment of 8,500 in 1972.[1] The agency began transformation to computer technology in 1980s; along with the gradual replacement of paper with electronic document distribution, this has led to a steady decline in the number of staff at the agency.[1] For its entire history, GPO has occupied the corner of North Capitol Street NW and H Street NW in the District of Columbia. The activities of GPO are defined in the public printing and documents chapters of Title 44 of the United States Code. The Public Printer, who serves as the head of GPO, is appointed by the President with the advice and consent of the Senate. The Public Printer selects a Superintendent of Documents.

U.S. Government Printing Office

The Superintendent of Documents (SuDocs) is in charge of the dissemination of information at the GPO. This is accomplished through the Federal Depository Library Program (FDLP), the Cataloging and Indexing Program and the Publication Sales Program, as well as operation of the Federal Citizen Information Center in Pueblo, Colorado. Adelaide Hasse was the founder of the Superintendent of Documents classification system.[3]
GPO first used 100 percent recycled paper for the Congressional Record and Federal Register from 1991-1997, under Public Printers Robert Houk and Michael DiMario. GPO resumed using recycled paper in 2009.

In March 2011, GPO issued a new illustrated official history covering the agency's 150 years of Keeping America Informed.[4]

With demand for print publications falling and a move underway to digital document production and preservation, the name of the GPO was officially changed to "Government Publishing Office" in a provision of an omnibus government funding bill passed by Congress in December 2014.[5] Following signature of this legislation by President Barack Obama, the change of name will take effect in 2015.

Public Printers of the United States[edit]

By law, the Public Printer heads the GPO. The position of Public Printer traces its roots back to Benjamin Franklin and the period before the American Revolution, when he served as "publick printer," whose job was to produce official government documents for Pennsylvania and other colonies.

Public Printers:

  1. Almon M. Clapp (1876–1877)
  2. John D. Defrees (1877–1882)
  3. Sterling P. Rounds (1882–1886)
  4. Thomas E. Benedict (1886–1889)
  5. Frank W. Palmer (1889–1894)
  6. Thomas E. Benedict (1894–1897)
  7. Frank W. Palmer (1897–1905), O.J. Ricketts (Acting, 1905–1905)
  8. Charles A. Stillings (1905–1908), William S. Rossiter (Acting, 1908–1908), Capt. Henry T. Brian (Acting, 1908–1908)
  9. John S. Leech (1908–1908)
  10. Samuel B. Donnelly (1908–1913)
  11. Cornelius Ford (1913–1921)
  12. George H. Carter (1921–1934)
  13. Augustus E. Giegengack (1934–1948), John J. Deviny (Acting, 1948–1948)
  14. John J. Deviny (1948–1953), Phillip L. Cole (Acting, 1953–1953)
  15. Raymond Blattenberger (1953–1961), John M. Wilson (Acting, 1961–1961), Felix E. Cristofane (Acting, 1961–1961)
  16. James L. Harrison (1961–1970)
  17. Adolphus N. Spence (1970–1972), Harry J. Humphrey (Acting, 1972–1973), L.T. Golden (Acting Deputy, 1973-1973)
  18. Thomas F. McCormick (1973–1977)
  19. John J. Boyle (1977–1980), Samuel Saylor (Acting, 1980–1981)
  20. Danford L. Sawyer, Jr. (1981–1984), William J. Barrett (Acting, 1984–1984)
  21. Ralph E. Kennickell, Jr. (1984–1989)
  22. Robert Houk (1990–1993),[6] Michael F. DiMario (Acting, 1993–1993)
  23. Michael F. DiMario (1993[7]-2002)
  24. Bruce James (2002–2007),[8] William H. Turri (Acting, 2007–2007)
  25. Robert C. Tapella (2007–2010)[9]
  26. William J. Boarman (2010-2012)[10]
  27. Davita Vance-Cooks (2013– )[2]

Published government documents[edit]

Official journals of government[edit]

GPO contracts out much of the federal government's printing but prints the official journals of government in-house, including:

Passports[edit]

The new e-passport produced by GPO

GPO has been producing U.S. passports since the 1920s. The United States Department of State began issuing e-passports in 2006. The e-Passport includes an electronic chip embedded in the cover that contains the same information that is printed in the passport: name, date and place of birth, sex, dates of passport issuance and expiration, passport number, and photo of the bearer. GPO produces the blank e-Passport, while the Department of State receives and processes applications and issues individual passports.[11][12][13][14] GPO ceased production of legacy passports in May 2007, shifting production entirely to e-passports.

In March 2008, the Washington Times published a three-part story about the outsourcing of electronic passports to overseas companies, including one in Thailand that was subject to Chinese espionage.[12][15][16]

Trusted Traveler Program card[edit]

GPO designs, prints, encodes and personalizes Trusted Traveler Program cards (NEXUS, SENTRI and FAST) for the Department of Homeland Security, Customs and Border Protection (CBP).

GPO publications[edit]

External video
Defense.gov News Photo 090120-D-0000W-001.jpgOfficial Presidential Photograph
printed by GPO
American Artifacts: Government Printing Office (29:47), C‑SPAN[17]

GPO's Style Manual[edit]

GPO publishes the United States Style Manual.[18] Among the venerable series are Foreign Relations of the United States for the Department of State (since 1861), Statistical Abstract of the United States for the Census Bureau (since 1878), and Public Papers of the President, covering the administrations of Presidents Herbert Hoover onward (except Franklin D. Roosevelt, whose papers were privately printed).

GPO Police[edit]

Security for GPO facilities is provided by the Government Printing Office Police.[19] The force is part of the GPO’s Physical Security Group and in 2003 had 53 officers.[20] Officers are appointed under Title 44 USC § 317 by the Public Printer (or his delegate) to serve as "special policemen". Their duty is to "protect persons and property in premises and adjacent areas occupied by or under the control of the Government Printing Office". Officers are authorized to bear and use arms in the performance of their duties, make arrests for violations of federal and state law, (and that of Washington, DC) and enforce the regulations of the Public Printer, including requiring the removal from GPO premises of individuals who violate such regulations. Officers have concurrent jurisdiction with the law enforcement agencies where the premises are located.[21]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f Rein, Lisa (January 25, 2012), "U.S. printing office shrinks with round of buyouts", The Washington Post, washingtonpost.com, retrieved January 26, 2012 
  2. ^ a b "Federal Eye". The Washington Post. 
  3. ^ GPO.gov
  4. ^ GPO History
  5. ^ Andrew Siddons, "Government Printer Renamed for Digital Age," New York Times, Dec. 12, 2014.
  6. ^ Highbeam.com
  7. ^ BUBL.ac.uk
  8. ^ GPO.gov
  9. ^ "Presidential Nominations Sent to the Senate, 4/19/10". Retrieved August 11, 2010. 
  10. ^ SacBee.com[dead link]
  11. ^ GPO's E-Passport Factsheet
  12. ^ a b Bill Gertz, GPO profits go to bonuses and trips, Washington Times, March 27, 2008
  13. ^ Bill Gertz, Outsourced passport work scrutinized, Washington Times, March 26, 2008
  14. ^ Confronting Digital Age Head-On, Washington Post, March 13, 2006
  15. ^ Bill Gertz, Outsourced passports netting govt. profits, risking national security, Washington Times, March 26, 2008
  16. ^ "GPO's backup plant on storm-prone Gulf". Washington Times. Retrieved January 18, 2010. 
  17. ^ "American Artifacts: Government Printing Office". C-SPAN. March 17, 2013. Retrieved March 17, 2013. 
  18. ^ "GPO Style Manual". United States Government Printing Office. April 16, 2009. Retrieved August 9, 2009. 
  19. ^ "GPO Uniformed Police". Website of the Government Printing Office. Government Printing Office. Retrieved 18 April 2014. 
  20. ^ "Review of Potential Merger of the Library of Congress Police and/or the Government Printing Office Police with the U.S. Capitol Police". Government Accountability Office. 5 July 2002. Retrieved 5 July 2013. 
  21. ^ 44 U.S.C. § 317

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]