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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.

New Congress.gov Homepage with Recent, Contact Your Member, and Search Tips.

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.

RSS and Email Alerts now with Appropriations Tables Email.

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.

November 2016

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:

Congressional Record Year and Volume Facet.
Enhancements – Congressional Record:

Enhancements – Committee Reports:

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

Legislation Advanced Search Date of Introduction.
What other enhancements would you like to see on Congress.gov? Leave comments here, or share feedback via our survey. This post was originally published on the In Custodia Legis blog of the Law Library of Congress.

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