D.C. Law 21-251. Uniform Electronic Legal Material Act of 2016.

D.C. Law 21-251. Uniform Electronic Legal Material Act of 2016.

AN ACT

To enact the Uniform Electronic Legal Material Act, to provide for the official designation, authentication, and preservation of certain legal material in electronic records by an official publisher.

BE IT ENACTED BY THE COUNCIL OF THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA, That this act may be cited as the "Uniform Electronic Legal Material Act of 2016".

New subchapter V of Chapter 6 of Title 2

New § 2-651.01

Sec. 2.

For the purposes of this act, the term:

(1) "Electronic" means relating to technology having electrical, digital, magnetic, wireless, optical, electromagnetic, or similar capabilities.

(2) "Legal material" means, whether or not in effect:

(A) The acts and resolutions of the Council;

(B) The District of Columbia Official Code;

(C) The District of Columbia Municipal Regulations;

(D) Other legal materials designated by the Mayor by rule; and

(E) Other legal materials designated by the Council by resolution.

(3) "Official publisher" means:

(A) For the acts and resolutions of the Council, the Secretary to the Council;

(B) For the District of Columbia Official Code, the General Counsel to the Council;

(C) For the District of Columbia Municipal Regulations, the Administrator of the District of Columbia Office of Documents, established by section 2 of the District of Columbia Documents Act, effective March 6, 1979 (D.C. Law 2-153; D.C. Official Code § 2-611);

(D) For other legal material designated by the Mayor pursuant to paragraph (2)(D) of this section, the Mayor; and

(E) For other legal material designated by the Council pursuant to paragraph (2)(E) of this section, the Secretary to the Council.

(4) "Publish" means to display, present, or release to the public, or cause to be displayed, presented, or released to the public, by the official publisher.

(5) "Record" means information that is inscribed on a tangible medium or that is stored in an electronic or other medium and is retrievable in perceivable form.

(6) "State" means a state of the United States, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the United States Virgin Islands, or any territory or insular possession subject to the jurisdiction of the United States.

New § 2-651.02

Sec. 3. Applicability.

This act applies to all legal material in an electronic record that is designated as official under section 4 and first published electronically on or after July 1, 2017.

New § 2-651.03

Sec. 4. Legal material in official electronic record.

(a) If an official publisher publishes legal material only in an electronic record, the official publisher shall:

(1) Designate the electronic record as official; and

(2) Comply with sections 5, 7, and 8.

(b) An official publisher that publishes legal material in an electronic record and also publishes the material in a record other than an electronic record may designate the electronic record as official if the official publisher complies with sections 5, 7, and 8.

New § 2-651.04

Sec. 5. Authentication of official electronic record.

An official publisher of legal material in an electronic record that is designated as official under section 4 shall authenticate the record. To authenticate an electronic record, the official publisher shall provide a method for a user to determine that the record received by the user from the official publisher is unaltered from the official record published by the official publisher.

New § 2-651.05

Sec. 6. Effect of authentication.

(a) Legal material in an electronic record that is authenticated under section 5 is presumed to be an accurate copy of the legal material.

(b) If another state has adopted a law substantially similar to this act, legal material in an electronic record that is designated as official and authenticated by the official publisher in that state is presumed to be an accurate copy of the legal material.

(c) A party contesting the authentication of legal material in an electronic record authenticated under section 5 has the burden of proving by a preponderance of the evidence that the record is inauthentic.

New § 2-651.06

Sec. 7. Preservation and security of legal material in official electronic record.

(a) An official publisher of legal material in an electronic record that is or was designated as official under section 4 shall provide for the preservation and security of the record in an electronic form or a form that is not electronic.

(b) If legal material is preserved under subsection (a) of this section in an electronic record, the official publisher shall:

(1) Ensure the integrity of the record;

(2) Provide for backup and recovery of the record in the event of a disaster; and

(3) Ensure the continuing usability of the material.

New § 2-651.07

Sec. 8. Public access to legal material in official electronic record.

An official publisher of legal material in an electronic record that is required to be preserved under section 7 shall ensure that the material is reasonably available for use by the public on a permanent basis.

New § 2-651.08

Sec. 9. Standards.

In implementing this act, an official publisher of legal material in an electronic record shall consider:

(1) Standards and practices of other jurisdictions;

(2) The most recent standards regarding authentication of, preservation and security of, and public access to, legal material in an electronic record and other electronic records, as promulgated by national standard-setting bodies;

(3) The needs of users of legal material in an electronic record;

(4) The views of governmental officials and entities and other interested persons; and

(5) To the extent practicable, methods and technologies for the authentication of, preservation and security of, and public access to, legal material that are compatible with the methods and technologies used by other official publishers in the District of Columbia and in states that have adopted a law substantially similar to this act.

New § 2-651.09

Sec. 10. Rules.

(a) The Mayor, pursuant to Title I of the District of Columbia Administrative Procedure Act, approved October 21, 1968 (82 Stat. 1204; D.C. Official Code § 2-501 et seq.), may promulgate rules to carry out the purposes of this act pursuant to the Mayor's authority under section 2(3)(C) and (D).

(b) The Council may adopt its own rules or resolutions to implement the provisions of this act that are exclusively applicable to the Council pursuant to its authority under section 2(3)(A), (B), and (E).

New § 2-651.10

Sec. 11. Uniformity of application and construction.

In applying and construing this uniform act, consideration shall be given to the need to promote uniformity of the law with respect to its subject matter among states that enact it.

New § 2-651.11

Sec. 12. Relation to Electronic Signatures in Global and National Commerce Act.

This act modifies, limits, or supersedes the Electronic Signatures in Global and National Commerce Act, approved June 30, 2000 (144 Stat. 464; 15 U.S.C. § 7001 et seq.), but does not modify, limit, or supersede section 101(c) of that act (15 U.S.C. § 7001(c)), or authorize electronic delivery of any of the notices described in section 103(b) of that act (15 U.S.C. § 7003(b)).

Sec. 13. Fiscal impact statement.

The Council adopts the fiscal impact statement in the committee report as the fiscal impact statement required by section 4a of the General Legislative Procedures Act of 1975, approved October 16, 2006 (120 Stat. 2038; D.C. Official Code § 1-301.47a).

Sec. 14. Effective date.

This act shall take effect following approval by the Mayor (or in the event of veto by the Mayor, action by the Council to override the veto), a 30-day period of congressional review as provided in section 602(c)(1) of the District of Columbia Home Rule Act, approved December 24, 1973 (87 Stat. 813; D.C. Official Code § 1-206.02(c)(1)), and publication in the District of Columbia Register.