Congress.gov Homepage Highlights, Alerts, and More Enhancements
This has been an exciting and successful year for Congress.gov. We accomplished a major milestone when we retired THOMAS in July. Over the course of 2016, we completed a number of enhancements to Congress.gov. In April we expanded quick search to include the Congressional Record, Committee Reports, Nominations, Treaty Documents, and Communications.
In May we launched several new RSS feeds and email alerts and added saved search email alerts soon after in June. This is a feature that was never available on THOMAS. Also added in June was a powerful new advanced search for legislation. This search form provides greater access to the underlying data than was available on THOMAS. The September release added new nomination alerts and provided more consistency across the site.
With today’s update we have added additional items that users have requested. We frequently get questions on how to contact your member of Congress. There is now a prominent section for contacting your member. Another addition is the Recent section circled below. The first link for Yesterday in Congress was a favorite on THOMAS that users missed.
Occasionally, we receive requests for a function that is already available on Congress.gov. There is now a featured Search Tip to share and highlight such items. You can also subscribe to search tips from the RSS and Email Alerts page.
Also included in this set of enhancements is the ability to subscribe to an Appropriations Table email from that same RSS and Email Alerts page.
See Congress.gov Enhancements for the complete rundown of this release. The page also provides a nice overview of all the enhancements since the site’s launch back in September 2012.
Enhancements – Homepage Links:
- New “Recent” set of links for “Current Legislative Activities”
- “Yesterday in Congress”
- “Bill Texts” received today
- “Calendars and Schedules”
- “Presented to President”
Enhancements – Alerts and Saved Searches****:
- Subscribe to appropriations update email alerts from RSS and Email Alerts
- Edit an existing saved search title
Enhancements – Legislation:
- Subject Term links – Links from terms open lists of other bills and resolutions to which the term has been assigned. EXAMPLE: Subject Terms Assigned to S.524
- Search bill texts by Versions Published from Legislation Text search form
Enhancements – Congressional Record:
- Web-friendly display of Congressional Record Index entries. EXAMPLE: National Park Service
- Quick Search link from most recent issue page
- Year/Volume facet. See it from this results list
Enhancements – Committee Reports:
- Find committee reports associated with law numbers from Committee Reports search form
- Display improvements. See them at H.Rept.114-33
Enhancements – Legislation Advanced Search Guided Form:
- Collapse sections of the search form
- Your Selections displays Subjects, Actions, Sponsors, Cosponsors, and Committees
- Date of Introduction search