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Free Government Information (FGI) is a place for initiating dialogue and building consensus among the various players (libraries, government agencies, non-profit organizations, researchers, journalists, etc.) who have a stake in the preservation of and perpetual free access to government information. FGI promotes free government information through collaboration, education, advocacy and research.

Crime, Criminal Justice & Law Enforcement at State Agency Databases Project

This week’s State Agency Databases Project subject highlight is Crime, Criminal Justice & Law Enforcement. This guide is one of the few cases where all 50 states and the District of Columbia have at least one publicly searchable database in a subject area. Three examples from this compilation are:


Alabama Blue Alert Search – Blue Alert is activated when a local, state or federal law enforcement officer in Alabama has been killed or seriously injured and the perpetrator is at large. Browse or search by name, city, state, or status.


Hawaii Statewide Automated Victim Information & Notification (SAVIN) – Search and Register for Offenders – Hawaii SAVIN offers victims and concerned citizens free, anonymous, and confidential access to timely information and notification 24-hours a day, 365 days a year on the custody and parole status of offenders under the jurisdiction of the State Of Hawaii’s Department of Public Safety. Search by Offender ID or Offender’s First and Last Name and enter the Date of Birth and age range if known.


South Dakota Missing Persons – The South Dakota Missing Persons Clearinghouse acts as a liaison for families and law enforcement to provide contacts and resources that can assist in the search for missing persons.

For more, see http://godort.libguides.com/crimedbs. If you know of state agency produced databases in this area, either comment here or use the “Email me” link on the guide to report a database, which will be forwarded to the appropriate project volunteer.

State Agency Databases Activity Report 6/8/2014

It was a somewhat active week for the volunteers at the State Agency Databases Project at http://wikis.ala.org/godort/index.php/State_Agency_Databases as we started up our June link-checking activity.



Today’s featured database is from Jenn Zuccaro, who maintains the Hawaii page:

Hawaii State Archives Digital Collections – archives1.dags.hawaii.gov/gsdl/cgi-bin/library – Search digital collections of Hawaii State Archives, including Chinese, Japanese & Portuguese Passenger Manifests, Hawaiian Genealogy Book Index, Vital Statistics and others.



See the full story of the last two weeks changes by visiting http://tinyurl.com/statedbs14d. Below are some highlights of the changes.



Alaska (Daniel Cornwall)

Arizona (Lindsay O’Neill)

Missouri (Annie Moots)



ALASKA (Daniel Cornwall)

Septic Tracking System – This database offers two search types: – Installer/Facility Name/Legal Description/File Number r Township/Range/Section (Only Unsubdivided Parcels). Records include links to PDFs of original installation documents. Department assumes no liability for accuracy of information.



ARIZONA (Lindsay O’Neill)

General licensure page – For all professions. Formerly at http://az.gov/app/license/index.xhtml


In addition to the changes above, we also fixed a few links on the State Blue Books page. State Blue books have many uses, including providing material for K-12 students assigned to write a state report.

State Agency Databases Activity Report 5/25/2014

It was a relatively quiet week for the volunteers at the State Agency Databases Project at http://wikis.ala.org/godort/index.php/State_Agency_Databases.



Today’s featured database is from Jenn Zuccaro, who maintains the Hawaii page:

Papakilo Database – www.papakilodatabase.com/main/main.php

“The Office of Hawaiian Affairs’ (OHA’s) Papakilo Database, is the ongoing development of a cutting edge and comprehensive “Database of Databases” consisting of varied collections of data pertaining to historically and culturally significant places, events, and documents in Hawai’i’s history. This online repository of data will greatly increase OHA’s ability to preserve and perpetuate cultural and historical information and practices, thus providing an invaluable resource to educate other regulatory agencies, OHA’s Native Hawaiian beneficiaries, and the general public.”



See the full story of the last week’s changes by visiting http://tinyurl.com/statedbs. Below are some highlights of the week.



Florida (Wilhelmina Randtke)

Ohio (Kirstin Krumsee)




Department of Education Legal Counsel Opinions / General Counsel Opinions (2000 – present) – Searchable by Google Custom Search or browseable by year. No opinions available from 2007-2012.

VIRGINIA (Louise Buckley)

Fish and Wildlife Information Service – View or print Biota of Virginia (BOVA) booklets for native and naturalized species of Virginia. Each booklet contains species-specific information on taxonomy, status, life history, occurrence and distribution, land management practices, food habits, habitat, and environmental associations as well as citations to scientific literature. Searchable by species information and geography.





Rare Plant Species by County – Plants for each county are coded for threatened or endangered status. Formerly at http://www.dnr.state.oh.us/Home/Rare_Plants/RarePlantSpeciesbyCount/tabid/20404/Default.aspx

Yes, EIS’s matter! Hawaii Superferry

This is my first blog entry ever, and I can’t think of a better topic than Environmental Impact Statements (EIS’s).  We govdocs-loving, tree-hugging types are quite attached to EIS’s, as in this fine example of an EIS regarding Columbia River water management, plucked from my library’s online catalog.

The Northwestern University Transportation Library has a lovely page defining EIS’s and providing a guide to their own extensive collections in this area.  My library has its own internal cheat sheet as well. And you may wish to check out this list of impact statement announcements appearing in the Federal Register since 1994, some of the past few years with linking out to full text documents (thank you, Environmental Protection Agency).

Why do I have EIS’s on the brain?  I was reading my local Tacoma News Tribune last Monday, when I saw on page A5 a stunning color photo of an enormous vessel emblazoned with the words Hawaii Superferry, along with a surfer catching a wave in the foreground!  I am no stranger to ferries.  I grew up on Lake Champlain, vacationed in Maine, and now live in Puget Sound, home to some of the hardest-working ferries on the planet (my personal favorite is the
Tsawwassen-Swartz Bay ferry in nearby British Columbia).  But I am used to the thought that one must take an inter-island flight to get around in Hawaii, not board a big honking ferry to get from Oahu to Maui to Kauai.

The article’s author, Jaymes Song, notes that the Superferry’s first attempt to dock in Kauai was blocked by a dozen surfboarding protesters in the water.  What a sight this must have been, as the ferry with 500 passengers and 150 cars had to turn back.  The protestors, joined by hundreds more on the shore, say that the ferry company failed to perform a full environmental analysis before beginning operation.  Think of it:  no EIS published, and our surfers will block your dock — that Is seeing the real power of government information.  There are many twists and turns to this tale, and the Seattle Post-Intelligencer ran an informative article on September 2.

The Superferry itself is maintaining a list of news articles about its own fate.  Yes, people, EIS’s matter.