Library of Congress announces date for Virtual Public Forum on Congress.gov

The Library of Congress announced it will hold its third virtual public forum on congress.gov on September 21, 2022 from 1:30-4:30 PM ET. The forum will focus on user suggestions for enhanced access to congressional information/data on congress.gov and also provide an opportunity for the Library to provide updates on improvements to that website.

Pursuant to Congressional direction, the Library of Congress hosted virtual public fora over the last two years, which we summarized in these blogposts from 2021 and 2020. The Library had previously said it would hold this meeting, but had expressed concern about a decrease in attendance from the first to second forums. (To date, nearly 1,500 people have watched the second forum online and 6,000 have watched the first one, both of which are quite large numbers.)

To attend you must RSVP online here. The Library also has an online feedback form for those who wish to submit comments individually.

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Building Digital Capacity in Congress: Recommendations for the House Digital Service

Click here to download a PDF version of the paper.


Despite many reforms over time, Congress has struggled to keep up with the pace of technological change and the new burdens it has brought. In particular, because of its distributed governance, legislative branch IT operations must contend with a greater number of coordination problems, inefficiencies, and vectors for process failure. This, combined with growing district sizes and constrained resources, has left Congress’s digital capacity far behind what it needs to keep up with emerging technology trends and support everyday Americans seeking to engage with their representatives.

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The Congressional Data Task Force Continues Efforts to Modernize Congressional Tech, Including Itself

The Congressional Data Task Force announced significant legislative branch technology modernization efforts at their second quarter meeting on June 21, 2022, starting with a name change from the Bulk Data Task Force in recognition of the expanded scope of the working group as it goes into its second decade of existence.

We have a full report on what happened at the two-hour meeting below, but here are some highlights:

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Bulk Data Task Force Meeting Set for June 21, 2022

The Congressional Bulk Data Task force announced its upcoming quarterly meeting with take place on Tuesday, June 21, from 2-4 p.m. To join the meeting, register on its webpage.

On the agenda:

  • Welcome and Background (Meeting starts at 2:01/2:02)
  • Reports/Presentations/Updates from civil society organizations
  • Reports/Presentations/Updates from our Legislative Branch organizations: LOC, GPO, House Clerk, House CAO, Senate Secretary, CBO, others
  • Time for Discussion/Questions and AnswersAnnouncements/Closing (Meeting ends at 4:00 pm EST)

Don’t miss our recap from the March 2021 meeting.

Advisory Committee on Records of Congress Sets Meeting for June 10, 2022

The Advisory Committee on the Records of Congress has announced its semi-annual meeting on June 10th, 2022, from 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 pm ET. To attend the meeting, you must RSVP to archives@mail.house.gov by June 3rd. More details about the ACRC meeting are here.

Congressional Hackathon 4.0

On Wednesday, April 6th, 2022, Congress held the Fourth Congressional Hackathon, co-hosted by Majority Leader Hoyer and Minority Leader McCarthy. This blogpost is a stub to gather information from the hackathon. We will update it when we have some time.

The format of the hackathon was:

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Project ideas for the Congressional Hackathon

The fourth Congressional Hackathon will be held on April 6th, and in advance of the proceedings we’ve updated our list of project ideas and resources for the hackathon. The information is published as a Google document, so please feel encouraged to add your own ideas or add content to existing ones.

The ideas, including a summary of the idea, recommendations, and resources, are available here. You can also find a top line summary of the idea below.

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Save the Date: Fourth Congressional Hackathon on April 6

The Fourth Congressional Hackathon will be held (in person) on Wednesday, April 6 from 1 – 6 PM in the CVC Auditorium of the Capitol Building. Majority Leader Hoyer and Minority Leader McCarthy will co-host. Register to hack here.

The last congressional hackathon was held way back in 2017. You can read our recap here. (And if you’re really feeling nostalgic, you can read our recaps of #1 and #2 too.) 

Save the Date: BDTF Meetings on March 10 and June 9

The next Bulk Data Task Force meeting will be held on Zoom on Thursday, March 10, from 2 – 3:30 EST.

The second quarter meeting is scheduled for Thursday, June 9, also from 2 – 3:30 EST.

Registration for the March 10th event is now online here. The agenda is as follows:

  • Welcome and Background (Meeting starts at 2:01/2:02)
  • Reports/Updates from our Legislative Branch organizations: GPO, GPO, House Clerk, House CAO, Senate Secretary, CBO, others [35 to 40 minutes]
  • Reports/Updates from civil society organizations [15 to 20 minutes]
  • Time for Discussion/Questions and Answers
  • Announcements/Closing (Meeting ends at 3:30 pm EST)

Highlights from BDTF’s last meeting, held back in July 2021, included allowing digital submission of legislative documents to the House of Representatives during the ongoing public health emergency; the House Clerk’s Comparative Print Project and our BillMap tool for tracking legislative memes; and several other modernization updates from GPO, the Library of Congress, and the Secretary of the Senate. Read our recap here.

Video from all Senate Committee Proceedings In One Place

The United States Senate does not maintain a centralized repository for information about its committee proceedings that includes links to the videos. Our new website, https://www.senatecommitteehearings.com/, is our effort to address this issue and surface video from committee proceedings.

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