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[Fwd: [openhouseproject] Appropriations Report Language]

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  • Josh Tauberer
    So starting back in late 2006 there were some discussions about what kind of policies Congress should adopt for data. That lead to The Open House Project
    Message 1 of 1 , Jul 14, 2008
      So starting back in late 2006 there were some discussions about what
      kind of policies Congress should adopt for data. That lead to The Open
      House Project (theopenhouseproject.com) out of the Sunlight Foundation,
      which issued a report in May 2007 in which I (with help) wrote a chapter
      on getting the Library of Congress to publish their raw legislative data
      online, so that the information could be gathered reliably and without
      screen scraping.

      Congressman Mike Honda was receptive to the idea. His office recently
      submitted a paragraph for the House legislative branch appropriations
      report and bill asking the LOC and the Government Printing Office to
      look into this. This is a major step forward.

      More below.


      -------- Original Message --------
      Subject: [openhouseproject] Appropriations Report Language
      Date: Mon, 14 Jul 2008 12:31:18 -0400
      From: Rob Pierson <piersonr@...>
      Reply-To: openhouseproject@...
      To: openhouseproject@...

      I've mentioned on the list some of the steps my boss (Congressman Honda)
      has been taking, with counsel from many folks on this list, to guide
      Congressional policies on the path towards effectively leveraging
      technology to open up access to the public. There are actually quite a
      few other staffers who also follow this list, and we've certainly
      learned quite a bit from the conversations posted here, so I wanted to
      throw out a quick note of appreciation to everyone who has been
      contributing to the discussions.

      With guidance from the conversations on this list (and the OHP report),
      Congressman Honda recently submitted the following sections into the
      House Legislative Branch Appropriations Report. The following (or
      possibly very similar versions) were included in the Leg Branch
      Subcommittee markup of the bill:

      *Public Access to Legislative Data (as submitted)*

      The Committee believes that the public should have improved access to
      legislative information through more advanced search capabilities such
      as those available through the Library of Congress' Legislative
      Information System. The Committee also supports enhancing public access
      to legislative documents, bill status, summary information, and other
      legislative data, through more direct methods such as bulk data
      downloads and other means of no-charge digital access to legislative
      databases. The Committee requests that the Library and Government
      Printing Office report on the progress towards these goals within 90
      days of enactment of this Act.

      *Congressional Technology Coordination/ /(as submitted)***

      The Committee recognizes the need for the House of Representatives to
      develop a strategic and coordinated plan that will prepare for the
      future technology needs of the institution. A 2006 report commissioned
      by the Chief Administrative Officer and the Committee on House
      Administration, entitled /Strategic Technology Road Map for the Ten Year
      Vision of Technology in the House of Representatives/ provided a
      suggested structure for an IT evaluation and decision-making process.
      No later than 90 days after the enactment of this Act, the Committee
      requests that the Chief Administrative Officer, the Clerk, and the
      Sergeant at Arms report to the Committee of their efforts to develop
      House-wide data-sharing standards; implement standard legislative
      document formats; address the increasing resource challenges of Member
      offices; and identify disparate systems throughout the institution,
      which prevent it from taking advantage of economies of scale.
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