Here’s some big news. According to Daniel Schuman at the Congressional Data Coalition, today the Government Publishing Office (GPO) and the Library of Congress opened up the bulk data tap for bills, bill summaries, and bill statuses! See below for Daniel’s description of the new service and its implications.
Today the Government Publishing Office and Library of Congress completed a full revolution in public access to legislative information. Information about legislative actions in congress -– the bills, summaries of the bills, and their status –- is now available online, in bulk, in a structured data format. As I wrote in December, this has great significance:
- It marks the publication of essential legislative information in a format that supports unlimited public reuse, analysis, and republication. It is now possible to see much of a bill’s life cycle.
- It illustrates the positive relationship that has grown between Congress and the public on access to legislative information, where there is growing open dialog and conversation about how to best meet our collective needs.
- It is an example of how different components within the legislative branch are engaging with one another on a range of data-related issues, sometimes for the first time ever, under the aegis of the Bulk Data Task Force.
- It means the Library of Congress and GPO will no longer be tied to the antiquated THOMAS website and can focus on more rapid technological advancement. (At least for data from the 113th and 114th Congresses).
- It shows how a diverse community of outside organizations and interests came together and built a community to work with Congress for the common good.
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