Recipients of the LINCS/NALIT Online Democracy Award
The Online Democracy Award recognizes the following state legislative websites that stand out for making democracy user-friendly.
Utah State Legislature
The Utah State Legislature's website, “an information powerhouse,” won over the panel of judges with its simple interface and intuitive navigation that facilitates the public’s access to the Legislature. View the NCSL press release.
The Massachusetts Legislature's website was honored for outstanding achievement in using design, content and technology to bring democracy closer to the citizens of Massachusetts. The selection committee noted the site’s elegant and attractive design, excellent search functionality and bill tracking feature, useful civic and educational information, and transparent budget information.
The Hawaii Legislature's website won the 2012 Online Democracy Award. The judges were impressed by the website’s consistent, clean and attractive layout; simple navigation, extensive information and good search capability; extensive educational and jargon-free resources; features that invite citizen involvement; easy-to-find links to calendars, caucus sites, and committee hearings. View the NCSL press release.
The Florida Senate took home the 2011 Online Democracy Award for providing a simple, clean and fresh design, easy navigation, and a wealth of information for constituents and the public. Some of the other notable winning features of the website include a bill tracking feature,detailed background and contact information on each legislator, educational materials, use of social media widgets and RSS feeds. This is the first time a legislative chamber has been awarded this national honor. The press release provides additional details.
The Washington Legislature's website was recognized for providing extensive information that is easy to find and understand. The website's notable features include excellent search functionality, detailed explanations on web pages about available functions and features, Spanish language translations and printer-friendly versions of web pages. The site also was designed to be universally accessible and includes prominent ADA information. See the award description and NCSL press release.
Tennessee General Assembly
Tennessee's website stood out for its ease of navigation, depth of content and openness, and availability of information to the public. Key features of Tennessee's website that contributed to this year's award include: prominent educational resources; well-organized information; a simple, fresh design; integration of archived streaming video clips with agendas and bill information. See the award description, a video of the award being presented at the 2009 Legislative Summit and the award press release.
The Texas Legislature's website was honored for its wealth of information on the members’ pages, search capabilities, streaming video and audio services and an outreach to kids. In addition, this site is easy to navigate, making it friendly to the novice user and valuable for the experienced user. See the NCSL press release.
New Jersey Legislature
New Jersey's website stood out for its ease of navigation, depth of content and openness and availability of information for the public.
Minnesota's website was recognized for its ease of navigation, advanced searchability and multitude of content.
Utah State Legislature
The Utah State Legislature was honored for its outstanding achievement in using design, content and technology to bring democracy closer to the citizens of Utah. The selection committee specifically noted the site's use of RSS feeds and its audio and video technologies.