Thursday, August 10, 2017

Weeding Tips Part 2: A Tour of Legislation

Your may have legislation in your collection – what do you do with it?

Just for clarification here are some images of legislative volumes – your library may have one or all of these.

1996 Revised Statutes of British Columbia – aka“the grey binders.”

The main benefit of these binders is that one can see, in print, a fairly up-to-date version of British Columbian laws. The ‘1996’ refers to the last time the laws were consolidated; subscription filings are what make them current.*

Fortunately, this information is all freely available now on The online versions will be the most current. These binders are updated by subscription so if you are thinking of weeding these binders, make sure your subscription is not still active.

Statutes of British Columbia - BC Legislative Volumes (bound)

These are the official published BC Laws. These can be a little tricky to navigate as they don’t contain BC Laws consolidated (all in one place). Legislative volumes contain new legislation, amendments, and tables of legislative changes.

Statutes of Canada (bound)

These are the printed laws of Canada (Federal legislation) – Please note that these are also available online - the online version and the print are BOTH considered official.

* Please note that the online version of BC laws and the content in the binders are not considered the ‘official’ versions; the official laws are bound in statute volumes. Conversely, Federal Laws online at are considered official.


Having legislation available in print can be an important access point for your patrons researching the law. There are a few things to consider when evaluating this portion of your legal collection:

  • Space – do you have room for these volumes?
  • Format – is print access to laws important for your community? BC Laws are all available online now – will this be accessible?
  • Time – are you filing updates to your legislation?

If you are receiving bound (federal) legislative volumes, before weeding your legislation, it might be good to check if your library is actually designated as a depository for those materials: You may have to refer to the Depository Services Program of Canada and contact them to see what requirements are needed for your library.


If you can access laws and provide print from the online resource BCLaws, you do not have the space or time to maintain legislative subscriptions (like the grey binders), and you are NOT a depository – you can weed your legislation as needed for your library.

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