Dutch legislators get iPads, go fully digital

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THE HAGUE, Netherlands (AP) — Dutch senators have begun using 21st-century tablet computers in their 17th-century meeting hall in an effort to eliminate the mountain of paper they used to generate.

The First Chamber of Dutch parliament claims to be the first legislature in Europe to completely scrap paper and distribute proposed law changes and all other documents to senators via a specially developed app.

The move introduced Tuesday means senators will put iPads on their green cloth-covered desks of Parliament’s upper house instead of mounds of paper.

The Senate said in a statement that buying iPads for all 75 senators and developing the app cost some euro148,000 ($200,000), but the savings in printing and courier costs would amount to more than euro142,000 ($194,000) in the first year.