ACR Summer 2012 Conference Agenda

Administrative Codes and Registers (ACR) will hold its annual summer conference in conjunction with the National Association of Secretaries of State’s summer conference in San Juan, PR, July 14 through July 17, 2012.  A tentative agenda for the conference is available online.

Members of ACR will be able to participate in a web broadcast of the conference.  Information about registration has been distributed to ACR members through the ACR ListServ.

ACR Winter Meeting Agenda Available

Administrative Codes and Registers will hold a virtual winter meeting Wednesday, February 22 through Friday, February 24.  Sessions will begin at 11 AM EST each day.  The agenda for the meeting is available online at  Instructions for participating in the meeting have been distributed through the ACR ListServ.

Virtual ACR Winter Meeting

Today, ACR President John Martinez announced through an e-mail that ACR will be conducting its 2012 Winter meeting as a virtual meeting.  He said:

Due to low attendance numbers projected for the ACR Winter Meeting, it has been decided that we will not meet in DC but will hold a three-day conference online, similar to what we did last year.  We are looking at holding the meeting during January and are still finalizing the exact dates.

Additional information will be posted on as it becomes available.

ULC Issues Final Uniform Electronic Legal Materials Act (UELMA)

In an e-mail distributed October 10, 2011, the Uniform Law Commission (ULC) announced the availability of the final version of the Uniform Electronic Legal Materials Act (UELMA).  The final version of UELMA is available online at the Penn Law website at:  It has not yet been posted on the ULC website.

Following ULC’s approval of UELMA at its summer meeting, it was sent to the style committee for final review.   That process has now been completed.

The ULC e-mail describes the uniform act as follows:

The Uniform Electronic Legal Material Act establishes an outcomes-based, technology-neutral framework for providing online legal material with the same level of trustworthiness traditionally provided by publication in a law book. The Act requires that official electronic legal material be: (1) authenticated, by providing a method to determine that it is unaltered; (2) preserved, either in electronic or print form; and (3) accessible, for use by the public on a permanent basis.

Questions about the Uniform Electronic Legal Materials Act should be directed to the Uniform Law Commission.

NASS Administrative Rules Organization Honors Florida’s Division of Library and Information Services as 2011 Robert J. Colborn, Jr. Innovation Award Winner

Florida’s Division of Library and Information Services Recognized for Implementation of a Program to Hyperlink Materials Incorporated by Rules in the On-line Version of the Florida Administrative Code

The Administrative Codes and Registers (ACR) Section of the National Association of Secretaries of State (NASS), which recently held its annual meeting in Glade Springs Resort, WV, awarded Florida’s Department of State, Division of Library and Information Services with the 2011 Robert J. Colburn, Jr. Innovation Award.  The Division of Library and Information Services was selected for implementing a program to hyperlink materials incorporated by rules in the online version of the Florida Administrative Code.

The online version of the Florida Administrative Code contains highlighted text whenever incorporated materials are referenced.  Benefits of this new program include greater access of incorporated materials.  With a simple click of the mouse, citizens can obtain immediate access to the complete text of the incorporated material.  For state registrars and publishers, electronic and dated materials replace the voluminous materials that required organizing, archiving and disposing.  And more importantly, the rule is hyperlinked to the true legal version of the incorporated materials, eliminating confusion with multiple versions of the same material.

Administrative Codes and Registers (ACR), a section of the National Association of Secretaries of State (NASS), created the Robert J. Colborn, Jr. Innovation Award in July 2001 in honor of Robert J. Colborn, Jr., who served as the administrator of the Maryland Division of State Documents from 1974 through 2001 and founded ACR. The Robert J. Colborn, Jr. Innovation Award annually recognizes a program that demonstrates creativity and innovation in providing public access to or managing administrative rules. It honors the state agency that has made substantial contributions to the flow of information to the public by improving efficiency and delivery of services to citizens, businesses and other governmental entities.

“Florida has been a leader in E-government services since creating, an online rulemaking system in 2006,” said Florida Secretary of State Kurt Browning. “Our staff in Florida’s Division of Library and Information Services are among the most innovative and dedicated workers in the country, and I am proud of their latest accomplishment, providing the public with easy access to state government information.”

2011 Colborn Award Presentation
Elizabeth Palen (VA) presents the 2011 Colborn Award to Florida Secretary of State Kurt S. Browning for Florida's system for hyperlinked incorporated by reference materials

2011 ACR Robert J. Colborn Jr. Committee

  • Chair: Molly Masich, Codifier of Rules, North Carolina Office of Administrative Hearings
  • Member: Elizabeth Palen, Executive Director, Joint Commission on Administrative Rules, Richmond, VA
  • Member: John H. Martinez, Director, Administrative Law Division, New Mexico State Records Center and Archives, Santa Fe, NM

Past Colborn Award Recipients

Virginia Decoded

At the October 3rd Code Commission meeting, Waldo Jaquith introduced members to his beta website “Virginia DeCoded: The State Code for Humans.” His goal is to make state codes user friendly and easy for the public to find information. In June, Waldo received a $165,000 grant from the Knight Foundation to expand his code project nationwide. See articles on the Virginia Lawyers Weekly and Virginia Public Radio websites for more information.

AG’s opinion: Regulating guns at Virginia public universities

Virginia’s Attorney General recently issued an opinion that universities can prohibit the open carry of firearms inside university buildings by policy; however, must promulgate a regulation to apply such prohibition to concealed handgun permit holders.

Summary of opinion:

Under the present state of the law, the University of Virginia lawfully may promulgate a policy that prohibits persons from openly carrying a firearm in the buildings that are subject to the policy.  Further, with respect to persons who have a concealed carry permit, because the University adopted a policy rather than a regulation, it has not “otherwise prohibited by law” persons with a concealed carry permit from possessing a handgun, and, therefore, the policies may not be used to prohibit persons with such a permit from carrying a concealed firearm into the buildings covered by the policy.