January 28, 2022

Government Data: “Sunlight Labs: A New Face For Open States”

Awesome, wow, and kudos to Sunlight Labs.

From the Sunlight Labs Blog:

Wonder what the Open States team has been working on since we finished our initial goal of providing information for all 50 states back in March? As promised, we’ve been focusing on a new OpenStates.org and expanding our API to support full text search and we’re finally ready to show you the results.

If you head over to OpenStates.org now you’ll see that we’ve released a beta version of our site, currently available for 20 states. The remaining states are on their way later this year, but we wanted to make sure we took our time and did things right. As you explore the site you’ll see all of the information we’ve been making available via our API. You’ll also notice some enhancements made in the last few months like full-text search and enhanced support for legislator photos and contact addresses.

For an example of what you can do, check out the following links:

A few other features we’re particularly proud of and hope you check out:

  • Every page has a list of sources in the footer that can be used for checking our data against the official state website or for directly citing the state.
  • The search box at the top of OpenStates.org searches across all of our bills and legislators; type in a name or the number of a bill you’re interested in and we’ll take you to the relevant detail pages.
  • Where available we provide full contact information: address, email, fax and phone number for your state legislators.
  • Bill searches will also link you over to the relevant page on Scout. Similarly, whenever possible we’ll link to a legislator’s campaign finance profile on Influence Explorer.
About Gary Price

Gary Price (gprice@mediasourceinc.com) is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at Ask.com, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.