- By Elizabeth Sikorovsky
- Jun 23, 1996
If you want to know how your representative voted on a particular issue, the Library of Congress has it covered.
Point your Web browser to http://lcweb.loc.gov/global/legislative/voting.html. The resource, located at the new Library of Congress Internet Resource Page, points users to a series of private organizations, including C-SPAN and Congressional Quarterly, that tally the ayes and nays and put them on-line. The Congressional Quarterly offers a way to query for representatives' votes using a keyword search by last name, voting district, zip code, bill name or subject. The same site offers ratings of members by special interest groups, including the Christian Coalition and the League of Conservation Voters.
The LOC Internet Resource Page offers much of the same resources as the Thomas Web page, including background on the history of Congress, links to legislators and committee home pages, and on-line versions of the Congressional Record. Unlike Thomas, however, the LOC Internet Resource Page also offers links to on-line publications and services maintained by private organizations. For example, on the LOC Internet Resource Page, you'll find a link to Roll Call Online - at http://www. rollcall.com - the Internet version of one of the most prominent Capitol Hill papers provides news relating to Congress and election commentary.
Rep. Anna Eshoo (D-Calif.) has instituted a new way to communicate with constituents on her home page at http:// www-eshoo.house.gov. Previously, constituents would send e-mail and then wait for a printed letter sent through regular postal mail. Now Eshoo's constituents can get temporary mailboxes on her home page to correspond with the congresswoman's office. A visitor receives a password, Eshoo's office sets up a mailbox for the visitor, and then the visitor sends and receives messages via the mailbox. Only residents of California's 14th congressional district receive mailbox privileges.
Highway 1, founded last June, offers legislators and agency officials ways to try out high-tech communications. Some legislators have used the Highway 1 office facility to conduct videoconferences with schools in their districts. The office of Highway 1 also features a series of cubicles, set up to be used by a hypothetical legislative staff. The cubicles, each titled with a desk marker such as Member of Congress, Chief of Staff, Legislative Assistant or Press Office, are fitted with computer technology relevant to each particular duty. In this way, legislators and their staff members can try out the latest technology and relate it to their work on Capitol Hill.
Highway 1, a non-profit organization dedicated to helping government leaders "understand how technology can enhance their ability to communicate with the American people," is using its Web page to encourage technology use during the 1996 campaign. Access the site at http://www.highway1.org.
Also on the home page, click on the entry marked "Schools, Communities and Libraries," and you'll connect to http://www.highway1.org/community.html, a collection of "success stories" highlighting new ways community organizations are taking advantage of the Internet and other network resources. For example, you'll find a link to Smart Valley, based in Santa Clara, Calif. Smart Valley, formed to nurture information infrastructure projects relating to education, health care, government and business in the Silicon Valley area, has put its 1996 business plan on-line. The plan includes a proposal to help law enforcement incorporate new technology by adopting such applications as video arraignment and Internet access to police reports.
NASA Ames is using a Web site to offer the latest information on technology transfer opportunities and alliances. The Ames Commercial Technology Electronic Network can be reached at http://ctoserver.arc.nasa.gov.
The General Accounting Office's report, "Information Security: Computer Attacks at Department of Defense Pose Increasing Risks," is available on the Government Printing Office's Web site at http://www.access.gpo.gov/su_docs/aces/aaces002.html. Choose "GAO Reports."