Senate District 18
John Eklund
Eklund Announces House Passage of Bill to Ensure Authenticity of Legal Records
June 7, 2018
COLUMBUS—State Senator John Eklund (R-Munson Township) today applauded the unanimous House passage of Ohio's Electronic Legal Material Act. The bill, a bipartisan effort joint-sponsored by Senators Eklund and Skindell (D-Lakewood), aims to modernize the publication process to ensure official electronic legal documents are authentic, secure and available to the public.

Currently, Ohio does not have a process to authenticate electronic legal materials, such as statutes and regulations, that are published in the state. This bill clarifies the needed publishing requirements and processes for the Secretary of State, Legislative Service Commission and other state agencies that publish official electronic versions of legal materials.

"It is essential that Ohio has the appropriate mechanisms in place to keep up with an increasingly digital world," said Eklund. "This bill ensures Ohio takes the proper steps to maintain the integrity of our legal documents, while also creating greater efficiency and accessibility, and implementing best practices for how those documents are stored and handled.

While online publication has increased public access to legal records, it has also raised concerns that documents will not be preserved in an unaltered form, or will not be deleted.

Additionally, electronic legal material that has been designated official must be capable of being authenticated, preserved, permanently accessible to the public, and able to be backed-up and recovered.

Senate Bill 139 will now go to the Governor for his consideration.
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