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Congress.gov New, Tip, and Top for August 2018, Part 2

Robert recently blogged about the first set of enhancements to Congress.gov for August.  Earlier this year, we solicited and received a significant amount of feedback on Congress.gov.  An action item from that was to enhance the search form.  We were told it would be helpful to have the Words & Phrases box be labeled and larger.  Since it is the broader search, we also now have the cursor default there on the Legislation search.

Updates to the Congress.gov Search Form include Words & Phrases label, larger box, and cursor defaulting to it.

New Enhancements for August 2018, Part 2

For this release the Congress.gov Enhancements include:

Enhancement – Search forms – Words & Phrases search box improvements

  • A label has been added to identify the Words & Phrases search box on the homepage search forms.
  • The size of the box has been increased to make it easier to view long search queries.
  • Cursor now defaults to the Words & Phrases search box on the Legislation search form so users can begin typing keywords without needing to click into the box.

Search Tip

Adrienne‘s tip this week is “Search for Legislative Interest by a Committee:”

Building on a recent Congress.gov Tip that explained how to search for committee activities related to legislation using the Legislation Advanced Search form, today’s tip highlights a new searchable committee activity added to the form as part of a recent Congress.gov release.

You can now use the Legislation Advanced Search form to find measures in which a House committee has expressed Legislative Interest, in addition to Referral, Hearings by, Markup, Reported by, Reported Original Measure, and DischargeLegislative Interest is a label used by House committees to identify bills that haven’t been formally referred to the committee, but in which the committee expresses interest. Committee staff may informally contribute to such legislation. In some cases, the legislation may ultimately be referred to the committee for consideration of provisions that fall within the committee’s jurisdiction.

Try out this search for 113th Congress measures in which the House Homeland Security Committee expressed legislative interest. (Click Edit Search in the upper right corner to see search parameters in the form.)

  • From the Legislation Advanced Search form, under the Congress section, make sure that only the 113th Congress is selected. (The current congress is selected by default.)
  • Use the Committees section jump link on the right side of the form to navigate to the Committees section, or scroll down.
  • Under the Committees section, all committee-related activity check boxes are selected by default. Uncheck Any to remove all of the selections with one click.
  • Select the check box for Legislative Interest.
  • Select the Choose House Committees button to open a full list of House committees.
  • From the list of committees, select the check box for the Homeland Security Committee.
  • Select Apply to return to the form. The committee selection appears on the right side of the form under the heading Your Selections.
  • Select the Search button. The search returns measures for which the House Homeland Security Committee expressed legislative interest during the 113th Congress.

Top 10

Below are the Most-Viewed Bills for August 19, 2018.  All are from the 115th Congress.

1. H.R.5515 John S. McCain National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2019
2. S.3336 Defending American Security from Kremlin Aggression Act of 2018
3. H.R.5428 Stand with UK against Russia Violations Act
4. H.R.392 Fairness for High-Skilled Immigrants Act of 2017
5. H.R.1 An Act to provide for reconciliation pursuant to titles II and V of the concurrent resolution on the budget for fiscal year 2018.
6. H.R.2810 National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2018
7. H.R.610 To distribute Federal funds for elementary and secondary education in the form of vouchers for eligible students and to repeal a certain rule relating to nutrition standards in schools.
8. S.2779 Zimbabwe Democracy and Economic Recovery Amendment Act of 2018
9. H.R.6147 Interior, Environment, Financial Services and General Government, Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Transportation, Housing and Urban Development Appropriations Act, 2019
10. H.R.1625 Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2018

Please let us know if you have any feedback on Congress.gov or leave a comment below.

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