For the first time, Tennesseans can review scanned images all of the acts, bills, and resolutions approved during the most recent legislative session in an online database.
The searchable resource center, which was created and updated throughout the session by the office of Treasury Secretary Tre Hargett, is being labeled as an effort to increase public accessibility and overall transparency of government.
In a press release, Hargett said that the database was a reflection of the General Assembly's commitment to working in a timely manner.
"Our office has also worked quickly to make sure all Tennesseans have access to these acts and resolutions as soon as possible," Hargett said. Making all of this information available online increases government transparency and keeps citizens informed."
The site contains all of the 510 public acts, 32 private acts, and 1,071 resolutions of the 107th General Assembly and is the first time all resolutions—not just those required by law to be published—are available online. Records of previous sessions are also available.
Blake Fontenay, Communications Director for the Tennessee Department of State, said that Tennessee had not based its approach to online document posting off of any other states.
"We're not real sure what other states are doing with regard to publishing stuff online, because responsibilities vary from state to state," Fontenay said. "Online posting itself is fairly new, and as something that we've rolled in the past few years, this is an expansion of that service."
The documents, which are scanned versions of original documents, were updated throughout the session. Richard Arnold, Director of Publications for the Department of State, said that most documents were posted within a day of their introduction.
"When we receive documents from the clerk, we try to get them up on the same day, in less than 24 hours, or the next day," he said. "The technology is relatively simple, and in the future it will be updated in as quickly as it can be."
The website will continue to be updated when the 107th General Assembly resumes for its second session at noon on January 10, 2012.
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