This bill was proposed last week in the Minnesota State Legislature. It says that all state documents should be produced or at least saved in an interoperable non-proprietary XML-based format. Very interesting, and definitely a help to folks archiving and preserving born digital materials. Are other state governments doing the same?

H.F. No. 176,  as introduced – 85th Legislative Session (2007-2008)   Posted on Jan 17, 2007

1.1A bill for an act

1.2relating to state government; establishing Preservation of State Documents Act;
1.3proposing coding for new law in Minnesota Statutes, chapter 16E.
1.4BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MINNESOTA:

1.5    Section 1. [16E.0355] PRESERVATION OF STATE DOCUMENTS ACT.
1.6Effective July 1, 2008, all documents including text, spreadsheets, and presentations
1.7of the state of Minnesota shall be created, exchanged, maintained, and preserved in an
1.8open, XML-based file format, as specified by the chief information office of the state,
1.9that is:
1.10(1) interoperable among diverse internal and external platforms and applications;
1.11(2) fully published and available royalty-free;
1.12(3) implemented by multiple vendors; and
1.13(4) controlled by an open industry organization with a well-defined inclusive process
1.14for evolution of the standard. By that date, the state of Minnesota shall be able to accept
1.15all documents received in open document format for office applications and shall not
1.16migrate to a file format currently used by only one organization.

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