Below is a summary by Keely Merchant, Wisconsin Government Documents Librarian at the Wisconsin Legislative Reference Bureau, of her presentation on the new Legislative Reference Bureau Digital Collections:
In early 2015, The Wisconsin Legislative Reference Bureau Library launched a digital repository for legislative publications and reports. We have created collections for each of the Wisconsin legislative agencies as well as a collection for press releases and one for legislatively mandated reports. You are likely familiar with the publications from legislative agencies that are in their respective collections, so I would like to draw your attention to the latter two collections.
The Press Releases and Public Relations collection is for capturing legislative press releases before they disappear off the internet. We are currently adding the press releases that are already in our print collection, of which we have the years 1999-2003. We are also going through our News Clippings collection (available on the legislative network only) to find press releases and move them to the new collection. Going forward we would like to capture press releases from legislators’ websites as they come out. This collection has been getting a lot of interest from patrons researching political history.
The Legislatively Mandated Reports collection contains reports mandated by the Wisconsin Statutes and are submitted to the legislature by state agencies. We are especially excited about this collection because many of these reports have not been readily available outside of our library before. We are adding metadata to each record for the Wisconsin Statute and the law that created the statute, as well as which legislative biennium the report covers. For example, this issue of the Concealed carry annual report is for 2013, so 2013-2014 is in the “Biennium” field. You will also see that the statute and the act that created the statute are entered into the “Law & Legislation” field. Another metadata field to note is “URL”, clicking on the link there will open another window or tab that lists all the issues of this report.
The browse all mandated reports page allows for sorting by agency, biennium, law & legislation, subject, and date. Some statutes require more than one agency to submit reports so when you expand the “Law & Legislation” facet you will see that it is organized by quantity (and that there are always two that have the same number because they are in the same records). If you select “1991 Wisconsin Act 273” or “Wis. Stats. s. 1.11(2)(j)” you will get a list of reports submitted under that law/statute. If you then expand the “Agency” facet you will see that we have reports under that statute from five agencies. [screencast]
Many of the newer items in our digital collections will be on the Wisconsin Document Depository Program Digital Shipping List, all items have OCLC records that can be added to your library’s catalog. If your library has a page for government information, please add a link to the entire digital collections and/or to individual collections themselves:
Please contact the LRB library if you have any questions about the digital collections!