Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Where It's Happening: Tracking the States

In law and public policy, state legislatures often provide the impetus for cutting-edge innovation and reform. Tracking down new state laws and pending legislation on issues such as health care, identity theft, the environment, stem cell research and juvenile justice is easier if you take advantage of two free online resources. "The Government Domain: State Government Fundamentals," published this week on the legal information site, is a good place to start. This short guide by information consultant and author Peggy Garvin provides links to state government web sites, statistical and legislative tracking sites, and related sources. Another great tool is the "NCSL 50-State Legislative Tracking Web Resources" page, a topical listing of 50-state compilations covering many policy issues, with summaries of recently passed laws and current bills, links to state legislative and statutory databases, and state maps and charts. This free tracking resource is maintained by the bipartisan National Conference of State Legislatures.

Ernster, the Virtual Library Cat