Text: S.Res.54 — 108th Congress (2003-2004)All Information (Except Text)

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Introduced in Senate (02/11/2003)

 
[Congressional Bills 108th Congress]
[From the U.S. Government Printing Office]
[S. Res. 54 Introduced in Senate (IS)]





108th CONGRESS
  1st Session
S. RES. 54

    To provide Internet access to certain congressional documents, 
including certain Congressional Research Service publications, certain 
     Senate gift reports, and Senate and joint committee documents.


_______________________________________________________________________


                   IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES

                           February 11, 2003

  Mr. McCain (for himself, Mr. Leahy, Mr. Lieberman, and Mr. Harkin) 
submitted the following resolution; which was referred to the Committee 
                      on Rules and Administration

_______________________________________________________________________

                               RESOLUTION


 
    To provide Internet access to certain congressional documents, 
including certain Congressional Research Service publications, certain 
     Senate gift reports, and Senate and joint committee documents.

Whereas it is the sense of the Senate that--
            (1) it is often burdensome, difficult, and time-consuming for 
        citizens to obtain access to public records of the United States 
        Congress;
            (2) congressional documents that are placed in the Congressional 
        Record are made available to the public electronically by the 
        Superintendent of Documents under the direction of the Public Printer;
            (3) other congressional documents are also made available 
        electronically on websites maintained by Members of Congress and 
        Committees of the Senate and the House of Representatives;
            (4) a wide range of public records of the Congress remain 
        inaccessible to the public;
            (5) the public should have easy and timely access, including 
        electronic access, to public records of the Congress;
            (6) the Congress should use new technologies to enhance public 
        access to public records of the Congress; and
            (7) an informed electorate is the most precious asset of any 
        democracy; and
Whereas it is the sense of the Senate that it will foster democracy--
            (1) to ensure public access to public records of the Congress;
            (2) to improve public access to public records of the Congress; and
            (3) to enhance the electronic public access, including access via 
        the Internet, to public records of the Congress: Now, therefore, be it
    Resolved, That the Sergeant-at-Arms of the Senate shall make 
information available to the public in accordance with the provisions 
of this resolution.

SEC. 2. AVAILABILITY OF CERTAIN CRS INFORMATION.

    (a) Availability of Information.--
            (1) In general.--The Sergeant-at-Arms of the Senate, in 
        consultation with the Director of the Congressional Research 
        Service, shall make available through a centralized electronic 
        system, for purposes of access and retrieval by the public 
        under section 4 of this resolution, all information described 
        in paragraph (2) that is available through the Congressional 
        Research Service website.
            (2) Information to be made available.--The information to 
        be made available under paragraph (1) is:
                    (A) Congressional Research Service Issue Briefs.
                    (B) Congressional Research Service Reports that are 
                available to Members of Congress through the 
                Congressional Research Service website.
                    (C) Congressional Research Service Authorization of 
                Appropriations Products and Appropriations Products.
    (b) Limitations.--
            (1) Confidential information.--Subsection (a) does not 
        apply to--
                    (A) any information that is confidential, as 
                determined by--
                            (i) the Director; or
                            (ii) the head of a Federal department or 
                        agency that provided the information to the 
                        Congressional Research Service; or
                    (B) any documents that are the product of an 
                individual, office, or committee research request 
                (other than a document described in subsection (a)(2)).
            (2) Redaction and revision.--In carrying out this section, 
        the Sergeant-at-Arms of the Senate, in consultation with the 
        Director of the Congressional Research Service, may--
                    (A) remove from the information required to be made 
                available under subsection (a) the name and phone 
                number of, and any other information regarding, an 
                employee of the Congressional Research Service;
                    (B) remove from the information required to be made 
                available under subsection (a) any material for which 
                the Director determines that making it available under 
                subsection (a) may infringe the copyright of a work 
                protected under title 17, United States Code; and
                    (C) make any changes in the information required to 
                be made available under subsection (a) that the 
                Director determines necessary to ensure that the 
                information is accurate and current.
    (c) Manner.--The Sergeant-at-Arms of the Senate, in consultation 
with the Director of the Congressional Research Service, shall make the 
information required under this section available in a manner that is 
practical and reasonable.

SEC. 3. PUBLIC RECORDS OF THE SENATE.

    (a) In General.--The Secretary of the Senate, through the Office of 
Public Records and in accordance with such standards as the Secretary 
may prescribe, shall make reports required under paragraph 2(a)(1)(B) 
and paragraph 4(b) of Rule XXXV of the Standing Rules of the Senate 
available on the Internet for purposes of access and retrieval by the 
public within 10 days (Saturdays, Sundays, and holidays excepted) after 
they are received.
    (b) Directory.--The Superintendent of Documents, under the 
Direction of the Public Printer in the Government Printing Office, 
shall include information about the documents made available on the 
Internet under this section in the electronic directory of Federal 
electronic information required by section 4101(a)(1) of title 44, 
United States Code.

SEC. 4. METHOD OF ACCESS.

    (a) In General.--The information required to be made available to 
the public on the Internet under this resolution shall be made 
available as follows:
            (1) CRS information.--Public access to information made 
        available under section 2 shall be provided through the 
        websites maintained by Members and Committees of the Senate.
            (2) Public records.--Public access to information made 
        available under section 3 by the Secretary of the Senate's 
        Office of Public Records shall be provided through the United 
        States Senate website.
    (b) Editorial Responsibility for CRS Reports Online.--The Sergeant-
at-Arms of the Senate is responsible for maintaining and updating the 
information made available on the Internet under section 2.

SEC. 5. CONGRESSIONAL COMMITTEE MATERIALS.

    It is the sense of the Senate that each standing and special 
Committee of the Senate and each Joint Committee of the Congress, in 
accordance with such rules as the committee may adopt, should provide 
access via the Internet to publicly-available committee information, 
documents, and proceedings, including bills, reports, and official 
transcripts of committee meetings that are open to the public.

SEC. 6. IMPLEMENTATION.

    The Sergeant-at-Arms of the Senate shall establish the database 
described in section 2(a) within 6 months after the date of adoption of 
this resolution.

SEC. 7. GAO STUDY.

    (a) In General.--Beginning 1 year after the date on which the 
database described in section 2(a) is established, the Sergeant-at-Arms 
shall request the Comptroller General to examine the cost of 
implementing this resolution, other than this section, with particular 
attention to the cost of establishing and maintaining the database and 
submit a report within 6 months thereafter. The Sergeant-at-Arms shall 
ask the Comptroller General to include in the report recommendations on 
how to make operations under this resolution more cost-effective, and 
such other recommendations for administrative changes or changes in 
law, as the Comptroller General may determine to be appropriate.
    (b) Delivery.--The Sergeant-at-Arms shall transmit a copy of the 
Comptroller General's report under subsection (a) to--
            (1) the Senate Committee on Rules and Administration;
            (2) the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and 
        Transportation;
            (3) the Senate Committee on the Judiciary; and
            (4) the Joint Committee of the Congress on the Library of 
        Congress.

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