Colorado Secretary of State Donetta Davidson, One of Government Technology's 25 'Doers Dreamers and Drivers'

'We're the only state that has mandated electronic filing of charitable solicitations.'

by / March 4, 2005
Donetta Davidson says it's her job to make life easier for Colorado citizens and businesses, especially since the Secretary of State's Office is the state's business office.

"We've got 34 business entity filings online," she said. "We want to finish that process, as well as bring in trade names. We want to simplify the process for the public and not make it confusing. We passed legislation a year ago to bring all business licensing functions into our office."

Appointed Colorado's secretary of state by Gov. Bill Owens in mid-1999, Davidson ran for the office the next year and was elected in November 2000.

Davidson, who also chairs Colorado's Statewide Internet Portal Authority, has streamlined interaction between her office and Colorado employers. Her office created an online service that allows businesses to form commercial entities, including limited liability corporations, and for-profit and nonprofit corporations.

One of the biggest draws for users of the Secretary of State's Web site is the price -- filings that corporations previously did by hand now can be done online for 99 cents.

Davidson's office also is looking to revamp its campaign finance software so political candidates can make much more extensive use of the software for various filings.

"We're the only state that has mandated electronic filing of charitable solicitations," she said. "Such organizations can't file paper in our state. It's all electronic."

Perhaps the biggest technology challenge facing Davidson's office is complying with the Help America Vote Act. "We are currently building a voter registration and election management system that will integrate all election records for the 64 counties," Davidson said. "In addition, the new statewide voter registration system will automatically download updated information from three state departments."

Updated information will be received by the Department of Motor Vehicles, Colorado Department of Corrections and the Department of Vital Statistics, she said, and the automatic connection with these statewide departments will automatically update the statewide voter registration list.

"If a voter dies, the Department of Vital Statistics will immediately notify the Secretary of State's Office so that voter will be removed from the voter rolls," she said. "This comprehensive system will keep the state voter rolls much cleaner."

Congratulations to this year's group of "Doers, Dreamers and Drivers," who appear in the March issue of Government Technology magazine.
Shane Peterson Associate Editor