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House Adopts Electronic LDA Filing
According to an announcement on the website of the Clerk of the U.S. House of Representatives, http://clerk.house.gov, lobbyists and their employers may now file their Lobbying Disclosure Act (LDA) registrations and reports electronically rather than in paper form. The new filing mechanism employs an ACES digital signature system. According to the announcement, those vendors with General Services Administration authorization to provide such a system are AT&T/Verisign, Digital Signature Trust (DST), and Operational Research Consultants. However, at the current time, only DST offers the individual certificates that the House is using.
In order to file electronically in the House, a company must apply for an individual subscription-based certificate service with DST. This may take several days because of identity requirements. Second, the computer used for the LDA filing must have the appropriate version of Adobe Reader installed. With this system in place, a lobbyist and lobbyist employer may begin to use the filing aspect of Adobe software to file forms LD-1 and LD-2 with the House using the electronic signature.
Please note that the Senate already employs an electronic filing system, but this system is different from the one employed by the House. See www.senate.gov/pagelayout/legislative/g_three_sections_with_teasers/lobbyingdisc.htm. LDA reports are due on February 14, 2005, and copies must be filed with each house of Congress.