Lawmakers are set to vote on bill to legalize use of digital signatures

As Congress wrapped up its work on a fiscal 1999 omnibus appropriations bill last week,
it also put the finishing touches on the Government Paperwork Elimination Act.

The paperwork elimination bill would require agencies within five years to accept all
payments electronically and to treat digital signatures as legally binding. The IRS,
however, would be exempt from the bill.

Senate leadership cleared S 2107 with the Senate Democrats and expected to take it to
the floor for a vote last week, said a representative for Sen. Spencer Abraham (R-Mich.).
Abraham sponsored the bill.

Meanwhile, the $500 billion omnibus spending bill will include $13 billion to $17
billion in emergency spending for year 2000 work, including $2.25 billion for civilian
agency date code work and $1.1 billion for Defense Department year 2000 programs.

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