News and information useful to Cleveland-Marshall College of Law students, faculty and staff.


Complete Historical Congressional Record Now Available Online

cover of the Congressional Record On January 3, 2018, the Government Publishing Office (GPO) issued the final release of its project to digitize the historical Congressional Record. This release covers the first issue of the Congressional Record from March 5, 1873, through 1890. All releases in this digitization project are available on Govinfo, the website that will eventually replace the GPO’s FDsys.

The Congressional Record is an important and useful source when conducting legislative history research. It is published daily while Congress is in session, and is the official record of the proceedings and debates of the United States Congress. Each daily edition contains the Daily Digest, House Section, Senate Section, and Extension of Remarks. The daily editions are later collected, re-paginated, and re-indexed into a bound edition when each Congressional session has ended. These permanent, bound editions are now available on Govinfo, covering 1873-2009. The daily editions are also available online, covering 1994-present, on both Govinfo and FDsys. Prior to 1873, proceedings and debates of Congress were published in The Debates and Proceedings in the Congress of the United States (1789-1824), the Register of Debates in Congress (1824-1837), and the Congressional Globe (1833-1873). Those publications are available through the Library of Congress’s American Memory Project.

ProQuest Congressional: For All of Your Legislative History Needs

ProQuest Congressional provides users with efficient, targeted access to the most comprehensive collection of historic and current congressional information available anywhere online.

ProQuest Congressional [linked from our database page] is one of the best databases to use to answer any legislative history question. It is available on campus, or remotely with authentication (CSU ID and Pin). One great feature is compiled legislative histories.  A compiled legislative history means that someone else has gone to the trouble of gathering and organizing all the documents related to the passage of an important piece of legislation in one place.

For more information on conducting legislative history research, see our Legislative History Research Guide.

 

ProQuest Congressional

ProQuest Congressional provides users with efficient, targeted access to the most comprehensive collection of historic and current congressional information available anywhere online.

ProQuest Congressional [linked from our database page] is one of the best databases to use to answer any legislative history question. It is available on campus, or remotely with authentication (CSU ID and Pin). One great feature is compiled legislative histories.  A compiled legislative history means that someone else has gone to the trouble of gathering and organizing all the documents related to the passage of an important piece of legislation in one place.

For more information on conducting legislative history research, see our Legislative History Research Guide.

Ohio Legislative History and More with Hannah Capitol Connection

hannah-capitol-connectionHannah Capitol Connection for Ohio legislative history research is available remotely for Cleveland Marshall students, faculty and staff, for educational use only. Just use the link in this post, or a link from the library webpage (under Law Databases), and you can get in from home using your CSU ID and PIN. Capitol Connection provides one-stop shopping for Ohio legislative history documents corresponding to bills and acts from 1989 forward.

 

What does Hannah Capitol Connection have that is not on the Ohio General Assembly’s webpage or elsewhere on the Internet? Among other things …

 

  • Coverage back to 1989. The Ohio General Assembly’s page only goes back to 1997.
  • Summaries of hearing testimony (When you pull up a bill, click on “Bill History”).
  • Hannah Report news articles corresponding to each bill.
  • Executive Orders back to 1999.
  • A fifty state search to find legislation pertaining to particular topics in all or some of the fifty states.
  • A search for bills and acts that actually changed a particular Ohio Revised Code section, not that merely mentioned the section in passing.

For more information on researching Ohio legislative history, see our Legislative History Research Guide.

Resources for Conducting Multi-State Surveys

Multi color map of United StatesWhether you are researching in a developing area of law, or one that is well-settled, you may find that you need to compare and contrast laws in multiple states. Conducting a multi-state survey can be challenging and time consuming, but fortunately there are many tools available to help.

Westlaw offers 50 state surveys, located on the Secondary Sources page. There is one database for state statutes and another for state regulations. Each database is searchable by keyword and contains surveys on a variety of topics. Each survey provides links to the states’ statutes or regulations. Lexis Advance also offers 50 state surveys of statutes and regulations, and has a database dedicated to state tax charts with analysis. Users can search the databases or browse the table of contents. Bloomberg Law offers a State Chart Builder feature on a variety of topics that lets you select which states you want to compare and then displays your selected results. You can find the Chart Builder within each Practice Center. Hein Online offers a National Survey of State Laws that is browseable by topic or searchable by keyword.

There are great free tools available as well. For example, the Uniform Law Commission keeps track of which states have passed or are considering their proposed uniform laws, mentioned on this blog in the post about Digital Assets. Cornell LII offers a Topical Index of State Statutes, which is a compilation of state laws organized by topic, but does not provide comparison charts. Openstates.org is a project developed by the Sunlight Foundation, a nonprofit organization dedicated to governmental transparency. Openstates.org features  a searchable database of legislation from all 50 states, voting records, and bill tracking tools. Finally, the National Conference of State Legislatures compiles summaries, analysis, and charts of state laws on a variety of topics.