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 Collection: Congressional Research Service Reports
Access to Government Information In the United States

Access to Government Information In the United States

Date: January 23, 2003
Creator: Relyea, Harold C.
Description: The Constitution of the United States makes no specific allowance for any one of the co-equal branches to have access to information held by the others and contains no provision expressly establishing a procedure for, or a right of, public access to government information. Nonetheless, Congress has legislated various public access laws. These include two records access statutes — the Freedom of Information Act and the Privacy Act — and two meetings access statutes — the Federal Advisory Committee Act and the Government in the Sunshine Act. This report provides background on the issue of government transparency and examines relevant litigation.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Access to Government Information In the United States

Access to Government Information In the United States

Date: December 5, 2007
Creator: Relyea, Harold C. & Kolakowski, Michael W.
Description: The Constitution of the United States makes no specific allowance for any one of the co-equal branches to have access to information held by the others and contains no provision expressly establishing a procedure for, or a right of, public access to government information. Nonetheless, Congress has legislated various public access laws. These include two records access statutes — the Freedom of Information Act and the Privacy Act — and two meetings access statutes — the Federal Advisory Committee Act and the Government in the Sunshine Act. This report provides background on the issue of government transparency and examines relevant litigation.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Access to Government Information In the United States

Access to Government Information In the United States

Date: January 7, 2005
Creator: Relyea, Harold C.
Description: The Constitution of the United States makes no specific allowance for any one of the co-equal branches to have access to information held by the others and contains no provision expressly establishing a procedure for, or a right of, public access to government information. Nonetheless, Congress has legislated various public access laws. These include two records access statutes — the Freedom of Information Act and the Privacy Act — and two meetings access statutes — the Federal Advisory Committee Act and the Government in the Sunshine Act. This report provides background on the issue of government transparency.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Access to Government Information In the United States: A Primer

Access to Government Information In the United States: A Primer

Date: August 31, 2009
Creator: Ginsberg, Wendy R.
Description: The U.S. Constitution makes no specific allowance for any one of the three branches of the federal government to have access to information held by the others. No provision in the U.S. Constitution expressly establishes a procedure for public access to government information. Congress has legislated various public access laws. Among these laws are two records access statutes, The Freedom of Information Act, the Privacy Act, and two meetings access statutes, the Federal Advisory Committee Act, and the Government in the Sunshine Act. This report offers an overview of the four information access laws noted above, and provides citations to additional resources related to these tools.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Access to Government Information in the United States: A Primer

Access to Government Information in the United States: A Primer

Date: March 18, 2016
Creator: Ginsberg, Wendy & Greene, Michael
Description: This report offers an introduction to the four access laws and provides citations to additional resources related to these statutes. It includes statistics on the use of the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) and the Federal Advisory Committee Act (FACA) and on litigation related to FOIA. In addition, this report provides some examples of the methods Congress, the President, and the courts have employed to provide or require the provision of information to one another, as well as a list of resources related to transparency, secrecy, access, and nondisclosure.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Census 2000: Sampling as an Appropriations Issue in the 105th Congress

Census 2000: Sampling as an Appropriations Issue in the 105th Congress

Date: September 1, 1998
Creator: Williams, Jennifer D
Description: The 105th Congress has debated the decennial census sampling issue mainly in the appropriations process, beginning with FY1997 supplemental appropriations legislation for disaster relief. In FY1998 appropriations for Commerce, Justice, and State, the Judiciary, and Related Agencies (CJS), the Senate (S. 1022) instructed the Bureau of the Census not to make “irreversible” Census 2000 sampling plans, while the House (H.R. 2267) sought a moratorium on these plans, pending expedited judicial review of their constitutionality and legality.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Publishing Scientific Papers with Potential Security Risks: Issues for Congress

Publishing Scientific Papers with Potential Security Risks: Issues for Congress

Date: July 12, 2012
Creator: Gottron, Frank & Shea, Dana A.
Description: This report discusses the publication of federally-funded research results including positive aspects (wide dissemination that may drive innovation, job creation, technology development, and the advance of science), and the negatives (that some research results could also be used for malicious purposes). This report describes the underlying controversy, the potential benefits and harms of publishing these manuscripts, the actions taken by domestic and international stakeholders, and options to improve the way research is handled to minimize security concerns.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Researching Current Federal Legislation and Regulations: A Guide to Resources for Congressional Staff

Researching Current Federal Legislation and Regulations: A Guide to Resources for Congressional Staff

Date: August 31, 2012
Creator: Mansfield, Jerry W.
Description: This report is designed to introduce congressional staff to selected governmental and nongovernmental sources that are useful in tracking and obtaining information federal legislation and regulations. It includes governmental sources such as the Legislative Information System (LIS), THOMAS, the Government Printing Office's Federal Digital System (FDsys), and U.S. Senate and House websites. Nongovernmental or commercial sources include resources such as HeinOnline and the Congressional Quarterly (CQ) websites. It also highlights classes offered by the Congressional Research Service (CRS) and the Library of Congress Law Library.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Presidential Claims of Executive Privilege: History, Law, Practice, and Recent Developments

Presidential Claims of Executive Privilege: History, Law, Practice, and Recent Developments

Date: August 21, 2012
Creator: Garvey, Todd & Dolan, Alissa M.
Description: This report discusses the background of claims of executive privilege, ending with a look into how President Obama has used them.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Researching Current Federal Legislation and Regulations: A Guide to Resources for Congressional Staff

Researching Current Federal Legislation and Regulations: A Guide to Resources for Congressional Staff

Date: November 9, 2015
Creator: Mansfield, Jerry W.
Description: This report is designed to introduce congressional staff to selected governmental and nongovernmental sources that are useful in tracking and obtaining information on federal legislation and regulations. It includes governmental, nongovernmental, or commercial sources, and highlights classes offered by the Congressional Research Service (CRS) and the Law Library of Congress.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department