H.C.R. NO.



S.D. 1






REQUESTING a status report on THE current USE of oPEN SOURCE SOFTWARE in state GOVERNMENT and the adoption of a state policy supporting use of oPEN SOURCE SOFTWARE in state GOVERNMENT OPERATIONS.


WHEREAS, state government agencies are among the largest consumers of commercial computer software within the State; and

WHEREAS, some of the applications of commercial computer software may not necessarily be compatible with government functions, operations, and needs, and the software may also contain programming glitches; and

WHEREAS, traditional commercial computer software is based on a closed model in which only a very few programmers can see the software source code and modify and improve the software; and

WHEREAS, for this reason commercial software glitches and incompatibilities cannot be fixed by government agencies, which must hire consultants to address these software problems; and

WHEREAS, unlike traditional commercial software, open source software source code is accessible to and may be read and modified by most programmers to improve, adapt it, and fix bugs; and

WHEREAS, open source software provides the opportunity for state agencies to procure at little or no cost, software programs or utilities that may be modified by the agency to more closely meet the agency's needs; and

WHEREAS, open source software, upon modification, may be redistributed for use by other agencies that may yet again modify the software, therefore resulting in further improvements to the software; and

WHEREAS, with the growth of the Internet, there has been a rapid expansion in the sharing of information technology to the point where the philosophy of open source software is being promoted by the nonprofit, Open Source Initiative; and

WHEREAS, the Open Source Initiative has been embraced by those in the industry who want to provide a means for rapid development of better software and community access to these constantly evolving, mainstream software products; and

WHEREAS, the Open Source Initiative has developed and adopted criteria to certify open source software products, protect the credibility of the open source philosophy, as well as ensure that no harm is brought to end users of open source software products; now, therefore,

BE IT RESOLVED by the House of Representatives of the Twenty-second Legislature of the State of Hawaii, Regular Session of 2004, the Senate concurring, that the Department of Accounting and General Services (DAGS) is requested to provide a status report on the current use of open source software applications within state government and to adopt a state policy on the use of open source software applications within government agencies; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that DAGS submit a report of its findings and recommendations to the Legislature no later than twenty days prior to the convening of the Regular Session of 2005; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that certified copies of this Concurrent Resolution be transmitted to the Comptroller, directors of each state department, Superintendent of Education, State Librarian, and the President of the University of Hawaii.

Report Title:

Open source software in state government operations