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"Agencies must remember that any information that was a public record when produced in paper remains a public record when produced or maintained in any digital format, and that any information created as, or converted to, an electronic format is a government asset and must be retained for any period required by law or Local Records Commission regulations. Agencies are also obligated to produce and present to the public any records kept in digital formats that are needed to comply with the provisions of the Illinois Freedom of Information Act (5 ILCS 140/). Disposing of any public record, regardless of format, before its retention is complete and notification given to the Local Records Commission is a Class 4 felony. Therefore, before implementing any local government electronic record keeping system, a records inventory (Application for Authority to Dispose of Local Records) should be on file with the Local Records Unit of the Illinois State Archives (217/782-7075)."