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Congress.gov – More on Staff Work and the June 2022 Release

In March, I devoted a post to information about the work various staff members at the Library of Congress do for Congress.gov. The post included contributions from Office of the Chief Information Officer (OCIO) and Law Library staff and, at the time, I promised we would have a second post with information about the work our colleagues in the Congressional Research Service (CRS) do for Congress.gov. Here is that post.

Brandon Toth came to CRS in 2019 after several years working on public policy and issue advocacy in the nonprofit sector, he provides bill analysis for the Legislative Analysis Services Section:

As a CRS legislative analyst I interpret and summarize legislation at various stages of the legislative process. The bill summaries I write within my areas of expertise must be guided by the bill’s text but also readily understood by a wide public audience. Our team of analysts also enhance the legislative data available on Congress.gov by determining relationships between measures and classifying measures by policy area.

Jennifer Manning has been a CRS librarian for 31 years and teaches congressional staff about congressional documents. I have always enjoyed my interactions with her and very much appreciate her insights at our meetings on Congress.gov:

Working with the Congress.gov team has given me great insight into the complexity of our legislative process. There are a lot of expert, dedicated people across the Hill working with a lot of moving parts, all trying to meet the needs of different users with tight deadlines, without eroding the authenticity of the data.

Kimberly Ferguson has been part of the Library’s Congress.gov project for 12 years, and has provided training and help desk support for predecessor systems since the early 1990s:

My role is to lead a team of CRS legislative process and congressional data SMEs (subject matter experts) to serve our House, Senate, GPO, and CBO data partners. Our Congress.gov team is responsible for managing the exchange of data among legislative branch agencies. We are extremely interested in widespread adoption of legislative data standards because our workflows have lots of data dependencies. The advancements in access to data since my first librarian job for Congress, in the early 1990s, is astounding. Being a part of the team responsible for making Congress.gov available to Congress is on par with winning the lottery. Great partnerships with legislative clerks, parliamentarians, and technology experts in the House, Senate, GPO, and CBO enable our team to deliver more-and-more accurate and transparent congressional data.

Elizabeth is relatively new to CRS, having just finished her first year. She is a data analyst, working on the Congress.gov website:

My role as a data analyst on Congress.gov allows me to work with a team of amazingly talented people who maintain and enhance the country’s repository of congressional data, and work behind the scenes to help the librarians and researchers on the front lines serving Congress directly. Our work seeks to ensure the Congress.gov website both functions as expected and provides the information needed in a way users can understand. Any given day presents a variety of tasks: data analysis, quality control and troubleshooting, workflow development, and customer service, and contributing to special projects.

The June 2022 Congress.gov release is a behind-the-scenes improvement of infrastructure that helps the site’s functionality.

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The United States Capitol on a June morning taken from the Library of Congress Thomas Jefferson Building / photograph by Andrew Weber.

Congress.gov May New, Tip, and Top – Part II

Earlier this month, Margaret highlighted an enhancement to Member pages on Congress.gov – users can directly access their member’s contact information in Congress.gov simply by clicking on the Contact link on a member’s page. We have a variety of further new enhancements for you this month. Congress.gov allows you to download your search results when […]

Congressional Reactions to the Moon Landing in the Bound Congressional Record

The Bound Congressional Record on Congress.gov now provides coverage back to 1899. We have previously brought you posts that explore congressional reactions to historic moments in American history, including congressional reactions to the launch of the Soviet satellite, Sputnik. Today, we take a look at congressional reactions to the moon landing, specifically the return of […]

Congress.gov May 2022 New, Tip and Top

In April, Andrew wrote about the addition of Alerts to member pages so users can be notified when a member in whom they are interested has sponsored or cosponsored a bill. This month, we are releasing another enhancement to Member pages. Now users can directly access their member’s contact information in Congress.gov. simply by clicking […]

Congress.gov April 2022 New, Tip, and Top

Last month Margaret shared our enhancements and also provided some insights from a few Congress.gov staff on what they do for the website. This month we continue to make it easier for you to track what your members are sponsoring and cosponsoring on Congress.gov. When you put in your address to search for your members, […]

Congress.gov February 2022 New, Tip and Top – Part II

Earlier this month, Andrew blogged about the addition to Congress.gov of the ability to browse House, Senate, and Joint Committee prints. With this release, we have enhanced the Legislative Tracker by adding information about what the Tracker is and providing the user with a direct link to the Legislative Process videos. Enhancements Enhancement – Mobile […]

Browse Committee Prints: Congress.gov February 2022 New, Tip, and Top

Last month, Robert shared that Congress.gov now has committee hearing transcripts going back to the 103rd Congress (1993-1994). We previously added Committee Prints to the website. With today’s release, you can now browse the House prints, Senate prints and Joint committee prints. They are listed by the print number, title, committee, and any legislation that […]

Congress.gov January 2022 New, Tip, and Top

In November 2021, Andrew brought us news of appropriation email alerts, allowing you to receive an email each time new appropriation measures are considered by Congress. In December 2021, Margaret mentioned that the Congress.gov team added content for the Bound Congressional Record dating all the way back to 1899. Since so much important work in […]

The Bound Congressional Record – Congressional Reactions to the 1918 Flu Pandemic

The Bound Congressional Record on Congress.gov now offers almost 100 years of content, covering 1899 to 1994. As part of a new series, we are going to show you how you can explore congressional remarks on significant moments in American history using this resource. We did this once before by highlighting congressional reactions to the […]