Mississippi Blue Book offers wealth of information

Mississippians have a new way to find just about anything about their government. The Official and Statistical Register is better known as the "Blue Book." For a hundred years, the Blue Book has been a one stop resource for all things Mississippi government.  Now the state is the first in the country to go interactive. "Another words, anyone with a personal computer anywhere in the world can get our Blue Book," says Secretary of State Eric Clark.

The 700 pages of information are just a mouse click away on the Secretary of State's website. Mississippi images and audio introduce the online version, where you can download and print maps, view state symbols, and search for information, like election results.

Fans of the paper version of the Blue Book need not worry. It will still be published every four years as it has for a century. But you can find things in the online version you won't find in any book.

"We're looking at a 360 degree panoramic view of the state senate," Clark demonstrates on the website.  Virtual tours throughout the state capitol are unique to the new edition. And unlike the paper book, the online version has the benefit of frequent updates on ever changing state and local government. "Therefore we can keep the information up to date and current through the next four years, and that's something we've never been able to do before," he says.

It's a new twist on what has become a historical record of our state government. Now it is also a little more user friendly.

The interactive Blue Book is also available on CD-ROM.  Go to www.sos.state.ms.us to view the online version.