Dare To Do Docs
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    Dare To Do Docs Dare To Do Docs Presentation Transcript

    • Dare to do Documents
    • What are gov docs?
      • Government Publication means “information matter which is published as an individual document at Government expense, or as required by law.”
      • 44 U.S.C. 1901
    • What kind of information do Governments produce?
      • Bills, laws
      • Reports, studies
      • Maps
      • Statistics
      • Data
    • What kinds of governments?
      • Intergovernmental organizations (e.g. UN)
        • National/Federal (e.g.USA)
          • State (e.g. Michigan)
            • Municipal (e.g. Ann Arbor)
      • Non Governmental Organizations (NGOs)?
    • Looking for gov info…where to start?
      • GPO Access
        • http://www.gpoaccess.gov/
      • USA.gov
      • Google US Government
        • http://www.google.com/ig/usgov
      • Mirlyn
      • LexisNexis (Congressional, Academic etc.)
    • Overview of how Government works
      • Ben’s Guide to Government
        • http://bensguide.gpo.gov
      • U.S. Government Manual
        • http://www.gpoaccess.gov/gmanual/index.html
    • Researching Legislation
      • Look for as congressional publications
        • Bills/resolutions
        • Committee hearings
        • Committee prints
        • Committee reports
        • Floor debates (Congressional Record)
    • Resources for researching legislation
      • Thomas (free)
      • LexisNexis Congressional (subscription)
    • Congressional Voting Records
      • Want to measure Maverick-ness (aka party unity)?
        • House and Senate Journals
        • CQ Weekly
        • CQ Almanac
        • CQ Congress Collection Database
    • Presidential Signing Statements
      • Presidential signing statements:
        • Weekly Compilation of Presidential Documents
        • http://www. gpoaccess . gov/wcomp/index .html
        • Public Papers of the Presidents (books and online thru DLPS)
        • whitehouse.gov (recent only)
    • How Laws are Published
      • Slip Law (like a pamphlet)
      • At the end of each session, slip laws are compiled and bound in Statutes at Large (aka Session Laws)
      • Eventually statutes get organized by subject in the U.S. Code.
    • What’s the difference between Statutes and the US Code?
      • Codification!
        • Arranging by subject
        • Laws are often complex and cover many subjects
        • Codification breaks up the law and puts a section on education in Title 20 and a section on tax breaks in Title 26
    • I want a brief report that summarizes federal government policy?
      • Congressional Research Service reports
        • CRS Works exclusively and directly for Members of Congress, their Committees and staff on a confidential, nonpartisan basis
        • Reports written at request of members of congress
    • Finding CRS Reports
      • Some are confidential
      • Many are not confidential
        • CRS does not make them available (in print, electronically…nothing)
        • Ask your Senator or Representative for a copy
        • Hope that someone else requested the report and put it online
        • Maybe a private publisher is selling it
    • Sources for CRS Reports
      • LexisNexis Congressional
      • Free Online CRS Report Resources
        • http://digital.library.unt.edu/govdocs/crs/
        • http://www.fpc.state.gov/c4763.htm
        • http://www.law.umaryland.edu/marshall/crsreports/
        • http://www.fas.org/sgp/crs/index.html
        • http://www.opencrs.com/
    • Looking for old congressional documents?
      • Try the Congressional Serial Set (digitally via LexisNexis Congressional or books in stacks)
        • Whatever documents congress considered important enough to be reprinted
        • Bound by session of congress
        • Began with 15th congress (1817)
          • Documents before 1817 are in American State Papers
        • Includes
          • Committee reports
          • Presidential communications to congress
          • Executive agency publications that were submitted to congress (e.g. annual reports)
    • Researching Legislation
      • Question: “I need to do a legisltive history of the DMCA”
    • What’s the DMCA?
      • We often refer to laws by nicknames:
        • Patriot Act, Sarbanes-Oxley, Taft-Hartley etc.
        • It can be hard to find the law that way
      • Solution--the Popular Names Table (available when you’re searching the Statutes in LexisNexis Congressional)
    • What’s up with the weird call numbers?
      • We have a few different microfiche collections that have their own systems
      • We also keep some print congressional publications in SUDOCS
        • Developed by Adelaide Hasse between 1895-1903
        • Organizes information by issuing agency
    • SUDOCs numbers for hearings
      • Congressional Hearings
        • Y4
        • Hearings and Committee prints of some Congressional Committees are numbered as serials within each Congress.
        • These are designated by Congress and number (separated by the slash) immediately following the colon as:
          • House Judiciary Committee Serial 13, 103rd Congress would be:
          • Y 4.J 89/1:103/13
          • the number of the Congress takes the place of the usual numerical series designation.
    • Statistics
      • Statistical Abstract of the United States (US Census Bureau)
        • http://www.census.gov/compendia/statab/
      • American Factfinder (US Census Bureau)
        • http: //factfinder .census. gov/home/saff/main .html?_lang=en
      • World Development Indicators (World Bank)
        • http://searchtools.lib.umich.edu/V?func=native-link&resource=UMI01263
    • Elections
    • Where can I go to research the issues?
      • Vote411.org
        • League of Women Voters
      • Project VoteSmart
      • Elections 2008 (Docs Center)
    • Election Projections
      • FiveThirtyEight
      • Dave Leip’s Atlas of U.S. Presidential Elections (note his use of Red and Blue)
    • Campaign Finance Data
      • Federal Election Commission
      • LexisNexis Congressional (access via SearchTools)
        • Members & Committees
      • OpenSecrets
      • Follow the Money (money in state politics)
      • Oil Change International--Follow the Oil Money
      • Campaign Finance Institute
    • Election Results
      • CQ Voting and Elections Database (access through SearchTools)
      • Almanac of American Politics
      • Federal Elections Project