Government Publications Sales and Distribution

Published on AidPage by IDILOGIC on Jun 24, 2005

Administered by:

US Federal Government Agency (see all agencies)
Government Printing Office
CFDA #: 40.002

Purpose of this program:

To make U.S. Government publications available for purchase.

Possible uses and use restrictions...

The United States Government Printing Office, Information Dissemination Department (Superintendent of Documents),is an authorized sales agent for information published by the various departments and agencies of the Federal Government. Approximately 8,500 titles covering nearly every field of interest are available for purchase at nominal prices. If purchasers order 100 copies or more of one publication to be mailed to a single address, they will receive a 25 percent discount. Bookdealers, regardless of the quantity purchased, will be allowed a 25 percent discount when the publications, pamphlets, periodicals or subscription services are mailed, delivered, or forwarded to the dealer's normal place of business. No discounts are allowed when the publication, pamphlet, periodical, or subscription service is mailed to a third party (unless in quantities of 100 or more), or on those periodicals and subscription services which fall into a special pricing category as noted in, "U.S. Government Subscriptions" which is described below. Generally speaking, there are no restrictions on reprinting or quoting from U.S. Government Publications, as the code of laws of the United States provides that they cannot be copyrighted. However, Government publications occasionally contain copyrighted material which was used with permission of the copyright owner, and publication in a Government document does not authorize any use or appropriation of such copyright material without the consent of the owner. As the Government Printing Office serves merely as a printing and distribution agency for Government publications and has no jurisdiction over their content or subject matter, it is suggested that the originating department or agency or its successor be consulted prior to reprinting or quoting from any given publication. In those instances in which permission to reprint material from Government publications is granted, customary credit should be given to the Government Department which prepared the material. By law, every publication printed through the GPO, whether it is designated for sale or not, must be cataloged and indexed. The "Monthly Catalog of United States Government Publications" is produced to fulfill this obligation. The approximately 8,500 titles sold by the Superintendent of Documents include about 220 subscription services. These subscription items are listed in the Superintendent of Documents, "U. S. Government Subscriptions," which is revised quarterly and includes order blanks for obtaining these items. All titles sold by GPO are listed in 150 Subject Catalogs, which are revised as needed and include order blanks for obtaining these items. The Sales Product Catalog list the entire inventory. The Sales Product Catalog is on the Internet at:

Who is eligible to apply...

The services of the Superintendent of Documents are available to all interested parties and there are no eligibility requirements.

Eligible Applicant Categories:
Eligible Functional Categories:


Note:This is a brief description of the credentials or documentation required prior to, or along with, an application for assistance.

About this section:

This section indicates who can apply to the Federal government for assistance and the criteria the potential applicant must satisfy. For example, individuals may be eligible for research grants, and the criteria to be satisfied may be that they have a professional or scientific degree, 3 years of research experience, and be a citizen of the United States. Universities, medical schools, hospitals, or State and local governments may also be eligible. Where State governments are eligible, the type of State agency will be indicated (State welfare agency or State agency on aging) and the criteria that they must satisfy.

Certain federal programs (e.g., the Pell Grant program which provides grants to students) involve intermediate levels of application processing, i.e., applications are transmitted through colleges or universities that are neither the direct applicant nor the ultimate beneficiary. For these programs, the criteria that the intermediaries must satisfy are also indicated, along with intermediaries who are not eligible.

How to apply...

Application Procedure:

Not applicable.

Note: Each program will indicate whether applications are to be submitted to the Federal headquarters, regional or local office, or to a State or local government office.

Award Procedure:

Not applicable.

Note: Grant payments may be made by a letter of credit, advance by Treasury check, or reimbursement by Treasury check. Awards may be made by the headquarters office directly to the applicant, an agency field office, a regional office, or by an authorized county office. The assistance may pass through the initial applicant for further distribution by intermediate level applicants to groups or individuals in the private sector.

Deadlines and process...



Note: When available, this section indicates the deadlines for applications to the funding agency which will be stated in terms of the date(s) or between what dates the application should be received. When not available, applicants should contact the funding agency for deadline information.

Range of Approval/Disapproval Time


Preapplication Coordination

Not applicable. This program is excluded from coverage under E.O. 12372.

Note: This section indicates whether any prior coordination or approval is required with governmental or nongovernmental units prior to the submission of a formal application to the federal funding agency.



Note: In some cases, there are no provisions for appeal. Where applicable, this section discusses appeal procedures or allowable rework time for resubmission of applications to be processed by the funding agency. Appeal procedures vary with individual programs and are either listed in this section or applicants are referred to appeal procedures documented in the relevant Code of Federal Regulations (CFR).



Note: In some instances, renewal procedures may be the same as for the application procedure, e.g., for projects of a non-continuing nature renewals will be treated as new, competing applications; for projects of an ongoing nature, renewals may be given annually.

Who can benefit...

General public.

About this section:

This section lists the ultimate beneficiaries of a program, the criteria they must satisfy and who specifically is not eligible. The applicant and beneficiary will generally be the same for programs that provide assistance directly from a Federal agency. However, financial assistance that passes through State or local governments will have different applicants and beneficiaries since the assistance is transmitted to private sector beneficiaries who are not obligated to request or apply for the assistance.

What types of assistance...

Sale, Exchange, or Donation of Property and Goods

Programs which provide for the sale, exchange, or donation of Federal real property, personal property, commodities, and other goods including land, buildings, equipment, food and drugs. This does not include the loan of, use of, or access to Federal facilities or property.

Dissemination of Technical Information

Programs which provide for the publication and distribution of information or data of a specialized or technical nature frequently through clearinghouses or libraries. This does not include conventional public information services designed for general public consumption.

How much financial aid...

Range and Average of Financial Assistance

Not applicable.

Note: This section lists the representative range (smallest to largest) of the amount of financial assistance available. These figures are based upon funds awarded in the past fiscal year and the current fiscal year to date. Also indicated is an approximate average amount of awards which were made in the past and current fiscal years.


(Revolving Fund) FY 03 $31,135,000; FY 04 est $28,411,000; and FY 05 est $25,925,000.

Note: The dollar amounts listed in this section represent obligations for the past fiscal year (PY), estimates for the current fiscal year (CY), and estimates for the budget fiscal year (BY) as reported by the Federal agencies. Obligations for non-financial assistance programs indicate the administrative expenses involved in the operation of a program.

Account Identification


Note: Note: This 11-digit budget account identification code represents the account which funds a particular program. This code should be consistent with the code given for the program area as specified in Appendix III of the Budget of the United States Government.

Examples of funded projects...

Not applicable.

About this section

This section indicates the different types of projects which have been funded in the past. Only projects funded under Project Grants or Direct Payments for Specified Use should be listed here. The examples give potential applicants an idea of the types of projects that may be accepted for funding. The agency should list at least five examples of the most recently funded projects.

Program accomplishments...

The sales program of Information Dissemination Department (Superintendent of Documents) provides a means whereby the public can purchase selected U.S. Government publications. During fiscal year 2003, 233,900 mail order sales were received and processed; during fiscal year 2004, it is estimated that approximately 203,590 will be processed; and an estimated 213,100 will be processed in fiscal year 2005.

Criteria for selecting proposals...

Not applicable.

Assistance considerations...

Length and Time Phasing of Assistance

Not applicable.

Formula and Matching Requirements

Not applicable.

A formula may be based on population, per capita income, and other statistical factors. Applicants are informed whether there are any matching requirements to be met when participating in the cost of a project. In general, the matching share represents that portion of the project costs not borne by the Federal government. Attachment F of OMB Circular No. A-102 (Office of Management and Budget) sets forth the criteria and procedures for the evaluation of matching share requirements which may be cash or in-kind contributions made by State and local governments or other agencies, institutions, private organizations, or individuals to satisfy matching requirements of Federal grants or loans.

Cash contributions represent the grantees' cash outlay, including the outlay of money contributed to the grantee by other public agencies, institutions, private organizations, or individuals. When authorized by Federal regulation, Federal funds received from other grants may be considered as the grantees' cash contribution.

In-kind contributions represent the value of noncash contributions provided by the grantee, other public agencies and institutions, private organizations or individuals. In-kind contributions may consist of charges for real property and equipment, and value of goods and services directly benefiting and specifically identifiable to the grant program. When authorized by Federal legislation, property purchased with Federal funds may be considered as grantees' in-kind contribution.

Maintenance of effort (MOE) is a requirement contained in certain legislation, regulations, or administrative policies stating that a grantee must maintain a specified level of financial effort in a specific area in order to receive Federal grant funds, and that the Federal grant funds may be used only to supplement, not supplant, the level of grantee funds.

Post assistance requirements...



Note: This section indicates whether program reports, expenditure reports, cash reports or performance monitoring are required by the Federal funding agency, and specifies at what time intervals (monthly, annually, etc.) this must be accomplished.



Note: This section discusses audits required by the Federal agency. The procedures and requirements for State and local governments and nonprofit entities are set forth in OMB Circular No. A-133. These requirements pertain to awards made within the respective State's fiscal year - not the Federal fiscal year, as some State and local governments may use the calendar year or other variation of time span designated as the fiscal year period, rather than that commonly known as the Federal fiscal year (from October 1st through September 30th).



Note: This section indicates the record retention requirements and the type of records the Federal agency may require. Not included are the normally imposed requirements of the General Accounting Office. For programs falling under the purview of OMB Circular No. A-102, record retention is set forth in Attachment C. For other programs, record retention is governed by the funding agency's requirements.



44 U.S.C. 17.

Note: This section lists the legal authority upon which a program is based (acts, amendments to acts, Public Law numbers, titles, sections, Statute Codes, citations to the U.S. Code, Executive Orders, Presidential Reorganization Plans, and Memoranda from an agency head).

Regulations, Guidelines, And Literature

"U.S. Government Information" catalog lists many of the bestsellers sold by the Superintendent of Documents. "New and Popular Titles" catalog lists Selective titles in the active sales inventory no charge. "Monthly Catalog of U.S. Government Publications, "lists by agencies the publications catalogued each month. It includes those sold by the Superintendent of Documents, those for official use, and those which are sent to depository libraries for $61.00 a year for paper. It is also available on the GPO website at the following address: The "Subject Bibliography Index" at no charge; lists approximately 150 free Subject Bibliographies covering a wide-range of topics. The "Sales Product Catalog" along with other sales information is on the Internet at

Contact information...

Web Sites
Regional Or Local Office

Direct purchases of publications carried in stock may be made from the following Government Printing Office Bookstores: District of Columbia: Government Printing Office, 710 North Capitol St. NW., Washington, DC 20401, Telephone: (202) 512 0132 and Maryland: Retail Sales Branch, 8660 Cherry Lane, Laurel, MD 20707, Telephone: (301) 953-7974. GPO's online Bookstore is on the Internet at:

Note: This section lists the agency contact person, address and telephone number of the Federal Regional or Local Office(s) to be contacted for detailed information regarding a program such as: (1) current availability of funds and the likelihood of receiving assistance within a given period; (2) pre-application and application forms required; (3) whether a pre-application conference is recommended; (4) assistance available in preparation of applications; (5) whether funding decisions are made at the headquarters, regional or local level; (6) application renewal procedures (including continuations and supplementals) or appeal procedures for rejected applications; and (7) recently published program guidelines and material. However, for most federal programs, this section will instruct the reader to consult the so-called Appendix IV of the Catalog due to the large volume of Regional and Local Office Contacts for most agencies. This information is provided in Additional Contact Information (see below).

Headquarters Office

Mail orders and inquiries should be addressed to: United States Government Printing Office, Superintendent of Documents, 732 N. Capitol Street, Washington, DC 20402. Contact: Order Desk. Telephone: (toll free) (866) 512-1800 or DC area (202) 512-1800. Fax: (202) 512-2250, E Mail:

Note: This section lists names and addresses of the office at the headquarters level with direct operational responsibility for managing a program. A telephone number is provided in cases where a Regional or Local Office is not normally able to answer detailed inquiries concerning a program. Also listed are the name(s) and telephone number(s) of the information contact person(s) who can provide additional program information to applicants.

Additional Contact Information (Appendix IV)

Due to the large volume of regional and local office contacts for most agencies, full contact information is also provided separately here in a PDF format: