Serial Set for 69th Congress is Now Online

GPO + Library of Congress announced they have completed scanning the serial set for the 69th Congress (1925-1927). A serial set contains all the numbered Senate and House Documents and Senate and House Reports for that period.

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How to Track Legislative Memes

Legislation is how ideas are put into a format that Congress can process and transform into law. Some ideas are introduced again and again, but in different formats or at different times. Some bills in one chamber of Congress may have a nearly identical version introduced in the other. The same bill can be introduced again and again over multiple Congresses until it is enacted into law. Or a group of legislative ideas can be rolled together into a larger legislative package.

I like to think of ideas contained in legislation as legislative memes, which is a powerful way to understand what Congress is doing. We are working on a legislative tool, call BillMap, that allows you to track legislative memes as they move through Congress.

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Recap of Bulk Data Task Force Meeting on July 14, 2021

The Bulk Data Task Force met on July 14, 2021, for the first quarterly meeting since October 2019, which is just before the COVID pandemic began. The virtual meeting included presentations from the House of Representatives, the Library of Congress, GPO, the Senate, and Demand Progress Education Fund. Video from the 2-hour long proceedings are available here and slides from the presentations are available on GPO’s Innovation Hub. More than 100 people were pre-registered to attend the meeting.

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Statute Compilations Now Available in USLM

Today GPO announced that statute compilations are now available online (here) in USLM XML. A statute compilation is a document that contains a law originally passed by Congress and shows how later legislation has amended the law.

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The Recap: Library of Congress Virtual Public Forum

On September 10, 2020, the Library of Congress held a Virtual Public Forum on the Library’s role in providing access to legislative information. The forum was held at the direction of the House Committee on Appropriations pursuant to its report accompanying the FY 2020 Legislative Branch Appropriations Bill. Per the legislative language, there will be another forum scheduled prior to October 2021. There was widespread interest in the topic: according to the Library, several hundred people registered for the event. 

Prior to the forum, the Congressional Data Coalition and others sent a report containing more than two dozen recommendations concerning the Library of Congress’ legislative information services. They fell into five conceptual groupings: (1) Publish Information As Data; (2) Put the Legislative Process in Context; (3) Integrate Information from Multiple Sources; (4) Publish Archival Information; (5) Collaborate with the Public. 

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News: Upgrades to EveryCRSReport.com

This past week we upgraded our EveryCRSReport website, which as of this writing contains approximately 17,700 reports. By comparison, the official CRS website has only around 8,500 reports. The result is that we will continue to provide you the most up-to-date CRS reports as well as an extensive archive.

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Library of Congress to host virtual meeting on its legislative information services

On Thursday, September 10th, the Library of Congress will host its first-ever virtual forum on the Library’s legislative information services at 10 a.m. ET. (Follow the link to RSVP).

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Recommendations to the Library of Congress: Legislative Information Services and How They Could Be Improved

In anticipation of next week’s Virtual Public Forum hosted by the Library of Congress, we submitted the following recommendations to the Library of Congress on how it could improve its Legislative Information Services. The report is available online here. The recommendations cover the following five categories:

  • Publish Information as Data
  • Put the Legislative Process in Context
  • Integrate Information from Multiple Sources
  • Publish Archival Information
  • Collaborate with the Public

Bulk Data Task Force Reports Major Strides at October 2019 Meeting

The Bulk Data Task Force (BDTF) is essentially the justice league of legislative data. 

The task force convenes each quarter, bringing together the people in charge of managing Legislative Branch data—like the House Clerk, Secretary of the Senate, GPO, and Library of Congress—as well as outside stakeholders. Together the group works to make legislative data freely accessible to all.

The task force convened last week at the Legislative Data and Transparency Conference.

Here are the highlights:

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7th Annual House Legislative Data and Transparency Conference Announced

The seventh annual Legislative Data and Transparency Conference has been announced!

On Thursday October 17th, agencies, data users, and transparency advocates will come together to discuss Congress’s efforts to make legislative information available to the public as data.

The conference covers what’s working well, what’s not, and provides an opportunity to hear from and meet with the people working to make things better.

You can RSVP for the Thursday, October 17, 2019 event here.

You can find recaps of prior conferences and links to video from the conferences here: