HARTFORD — A new law mandating electronic filing of state-required annual business reports will become effective January 1. Secretary of the State Denise Merrill says eliminating the paper filing option will make business registration for entrepreneurs easier and result in “significant savings for taxpayer” by reducing the need for large amounts of paper. Additional reasons cited for the procedural change include shorter processing time and better customer service. The legislation passed both the state House of Representatives and Senate unanimously, and was signed into law by Gov. Dannel P. Malloy in July.