Legislative Research Librarians—LRL Newsline, Fall 2012

Volume XXXVII, No. 3, Fall 2012

PDF Version (formatted, with photos)

Table of Contents

Chair’s Column: From the Chair's Seat...
LRL Does Chicago!
Authoritative Informational Resources Webinar
State News
Notable Documents
NCSL Publications
Copyright Webinar

From the Chair’s Seat…

On Oct. 25, Library Research Librarians (LRL), with the help, cooperation and co-sponsorship of NCSL's  Research & Committee Staff Section (RACSS) presented a webinar on Authoritative Informational Resources. Please join me in thanking (and praising) Sabah Eltareb, Kristin Ford, and Tracey Kimball for their incredible work and preparation for this webinar. They were wonderful presenters and made the webinar fun and entertaining.
We had an astounding 73 log-ins (and 111 total participants) for this webinar. An archived version, with additional material, is now available on NCSL’s web site.
Also please join me in thanking Jeanne Mejeur and Heather Plush for all their hard work behind the scenes and computer screens. And with credit (and apologies) to Thomas Paine…
These are the times that try librarians’ souls. The summer information professional and sunshine reference specialist will, in this crisis, shrink from the service of their profession; but we that stand by it now deserve the love and thanks of man and woman.
While we may not receive the love and thanks of anyone, our profession is under siege. There are daily threats to access to information and what information that may be found may be so slanted and corrupted as to be of less than no use.
We have reached a time when “researching an issue” is equated by many people with “clicking a button,”  when trust in a source is proven by Google rankings.
As librarians, we have fought against spin, against limits to information, and against misinformation, and we must continue to do so. We have a duty as librarians and as legislative staff to train others in spotting biased information and using only trusted sources of information.
We must use authoritative informational resources and teach others how to use them and how to recognize them. We must train others to question the accuracy of all sources, to research and to prepare information.
And we must take the lead in all these activities not because we are librarians, not because we are legislative staff, but because there is no one else.
We may fail, but we will not fail without a fight. And if we succeed ... 
I started with Thomas Paine and I’ll end with him:  “We have this consolation with us, that the harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph.”
Coming up in the next issue of Newsline:  my decision for LRL to form a touring country folk band. Banjo players needed immediately.
Your Fearless Leader,

LRL Does Chicago!

See the PDF version for photos!

NCSL's 2012 Legislative Summit in Chicago was filled with beneficial meetings and networking. Our LRL group was small, but twice the size of last year’s group in Austin. Our intimate Dutch Treat Dinner at Trattoria No. 10, a premier dining spot with superb homemade Italian cuisine, was a perfect way to kick off the week.
The offsite tour to Kurt Gippert Books was a delightful adventure. Although taxicabs were plentiful at the McCormick Center, so were the lines of people waiting for them! We soon realized that if we waited much longer, we’d miss our session that necessitated a 40 minute journey. Like manna from heaven, a black limousine pulled up and parked across the street. Jeanne walked over, talked to the driver, and motioned for us all to follow, so like little ducklings we all crossed the street. Ten of us packed like sardines into a limousine designed to hold six passengers, me on top of the hot drive train with several legs and feet under mine.
Our cozy drive filled with lively dialogue ended in a neighborhood that made the limousine driver nervous. Kurt met us inside the entry of the somewhat spooky warehouse and led us up the stairs to his second floor shop revealing a sunny area surrounded by a wide range of books and interesting ephemera.
With welcoming heart, wife, floral bouquet, refreshing hors d'oeuvres, and background music, Kurt showcased several rare books. Among the highlights: a book autographed by Thomas Jefferson ($7,500); Murray's "Poems" 1779, containing fore-edge paintings ($2,500) (my personal favorite); Baum's "Wizard of Oz" 1900, first edition, restored with clamshell box ($7,500); and Arthur Miller's "Death of a Salesman" 1949, signed first edition with dust jacket ($3,500). It was a treasure trove for all of us! Kurt had stories to please, amuse and inspire all of us and guaranteed an intriguing cultural exchange for our intimate and diverse group. We were delighted to see and hold all he had to share.
Attendees included Florida State Representative Michelle Rehwinkel Vasilinda and her husband, Michael Vasilinda, Julie Pohlman (Wisc.), Judy Best (Wash.), NCSL Exhibitor Jan Towers and her husband, Sonia Gavin (Mont.), Shelley Day (Utah and Eddie Weeks (Tenn.).
(Kurt Gippert is a member of the Antiquarian Bookseller’s Association of America, Midwest Antiquities Bookseller’s Association and International League of Antiquarian Booksellers. Kurt Gippert Bookseller.) 
The joint sessions we sponsored were informative. Eddie stole the show with two phenomenal presentations. He has a natural flair and I wish all our members could have been there for “Researching Legislative History and Intent” moderated by our own Mary Camp (sponsored by LRL, RACSS, and Legal Services Staff Section) and “Avoiding Bias and Preparing Balanced Research” (sponsored by LRL and RACSS). Eddie moderated “Libraries: Solution Providers for State and Local Government” with ALA guest speaker, Cathleen Bourdon. Kristin Ford and Sonia Gavin presented at the “Records Retention-What to Keep and How to Keep It” session, (sponsored by RACSS, LRL, and the Clerks/Secretaries) and provided valuable information.
Chicago is such a vibrant city, making it fun to play when not working. Sonia and I took the Chicago Architectural Foundation's boat tour, explored the city at night on foot, and dined at several flavorful neighborhood eateries. I was also able to see the Lichtenstein and Fashioning the Object exhibits at the Art Institute of Chicago.
The opening reception at the Museum of Science and Industry and closing reception at Millennium Park provided a “Taste of Chicago” in every sense of the word, the latter with rain pouring so hard that the live band had to take shelter and we all donned the plastic raincoats provided for just such an event. Overall, it was an excellent Summit and the experience reminded me how fortunate we all are in our work environments, especially as NCSL’s LRL staff section members, to be working with such high caliber staff in all states.

LRL Webinar: Authoritative Informational Resources

On Oct. 25, the Legislative Research Librarians, in conjunction with the Research and Committee Staff section, sponsored the webinar Authoritative Informational Resources in an Age of Social Media: Or, Does the Truth Matter Anymore?  The webinar was moderated by LRL Chair Eddie Weeks, Legislative Librarian for the Tennessee General Assembly.  The faculty were:

  • Sabah Eltareb, Assistant Director, Research Bureau, California
  • Kristin Ford, Legislative Librarian, Legislative Reference Library, Legislative Services Office, Idaho
  • Tracey Kimball, Librarian, Legislative Council Service, New Mexico

With the current flood of information bombarding us on a daily basis from the Internet, tweets, Facebook, email, and other media, the researcher must be diligent in checking the authenticity of information. There are over 4 million tweets per day, and groups can pay to have their organization rank higher on Google. Add to this “mockumentaries” being produced by the Discovery Channel, Merck publishing a fake journal and Internet character assassination and we learned it is more important than ever to check your sources.
Remember to check currency, reliability, authority and purpose/perspective. Trust and verify sources and carefully evaluate search results. For researching law, remember Lexis, Westlaw, and Thomas, the Law Library of Congress website. The thorough researcher should use more than one search engine. And if you have questions about an issue or a resource, you can always contact the source.
The panel provided some excellent resources for the savvy researcher. These include sites to check for hoaxes, such as Snopes and FactCheck. Other sites for authoritative information include government and public interest websites.
A hierarchy of trust in Internet sources include:

  • NCSL, the Council of State Governments, and legislative research offices 
  • Congressional Research Service reports 
  • Federal and state government agencies 
  • Professional associations and academic sites 
  • Databases through your local public library or state library
  • Go to Think Tanks

Sources for evaluating websites:

Take heart, fellow researchers, there are good resources out there, but always remember to trust but verify. The truth still matters!
Watch the recorded webinar and find additional resources on the Webinar Archive page

State News

Thanks to discussion among the LRL officers, LRL Regions now have names!!  Thank you to our new and returning Regional Coordinators, who have done a great job in gathering news from the states.
For this issue, the Regional Coordinators posed the following questions to the states in their regions:
1.  What issues do you foresee coming up in your state in 2013?
2. What issues would you like to see addressed in future LRL webinars?
3. What is your level of interest in attending a 2013 LRL Professional Development Seminar?
Atlantic Northern Region: Carrie Rose, Connecticut
Things were a bit busy in the Northern Atlantic region, as several of the states experienced significant impacts from Hurricane Sandy.
1. Hot Issues for 2013:
The budget is going to be the biggest issue facing the Connecticut legislature this year. We are already running a deficit larger than expected. There was also mention of energy issues and education reform modifications. A colleague also suggested that the Uniform Electronic Legal Material Act (UELMA) may be proposed again which might be of interest to our fellow librarians.
2. Future Training Topics:
We don't have any suggestions for webinars (sorry)!
3. Interest in a 2013 PDS:
Out of three of us in the library, two of us would be interested in attending a 2013 LRL Professional Development seminar if the state budgets allowed while the other would only attend if it was in close proximity and if she liked the topics covered.
Atlantic Central Region: Julia Covington, North Carolina
1. Hot Issues for 2013:
From Cathy Martin, North Carolina: My crystal ball is “in hiding” these days so I can’t even guess about the substantive issues! Institutionally, the Legislature is working toward a more paperless environment, so the Library will be modifying bill filing, indexing, retention and archiving processes.
2. Future Training Topics:
See #1  Having others share their experiences and receiving expert instruction in handling the transition from paper to paperless would be very helpful.
3. Interest in a 2013 PDS:
Cathy Martin says, “Very high. I’m hopeful we could send at least one staff member and perhaps more to a 2013 seminar.”
Other News:
Julia Covington shares these staff updates from North Carolina:  Library Research Assistant, Belle Fite, retired as of Oct. 31. Belle began work at the legislative library back in 1977 and officially retired in August 2000. She came back part-time in January 2001 and has worked regularly since then. Belle has been one of the finest employees ever in the General Assembly and we’ll miss her very much.

Becky Cook, boards and commissions assistant,  has resigned her position with us effective Nov. 1. She and her husband are embarking on a new work venture in their home state of Nebraska. Becky joined the Research Division in November 2010 and has been an exceptional employee, so we’re quite sad to see her go.
Julia also noted that many of the mid-Atlantic states were a bit preoccupied this time around with the impact and clean-up from Hurricane Sandy but will share news from additional states in the next issue.
Gulf Coastal Region: Elisa LeJeune, Louisiana
1. Hot Issues for 2013:
From Eddie Weeks, Tennessee: Education funding (both higher and K-12), charter schools, child services.
From Frances Thomas, Louisiana: Medicaid funding, tax law reform (odd years are restricted sessions for mainly fiscal issues), budget cuts and privatization of state prisons and services
From Diane Clincy, Mississippi: state budget, education, health care.
From Helen Hanby, Alabama:
I don’t know what issues the Legislature plans to deal with in 2013. I would guess more job production and crafting a budget with lower revenues as in the last couple of years.
2. Future Training Topics:
Eddie Weeks, Tennessee: Core collections, selecting legislative sources, prioritizing, dealing with difficult staff, dealing with difficult deadlines.
Frances Thomas, Louisiana: Web design for legislative libraries and indexing of legislation
Diane Clincy, Mississippi: Collection Development and Budget cuts for Legislative Libraries
3. Interest in a 2013 PDS:
Eddie Weeks says, “Very high, if someone will pay for it...”
Frances Thomas says, “One librarian is expected to attend, possible second librarian from the Poynter Library, Senate librarian will not attend.”
Diane Clincy says, “We would love to attend a professional development seminar, but funding is not available at this time.”
Helen Hanby reports she is “not really interested in a 2013 seminar.”
Editor’s Note: Welcome to Elisa LeJeune, who is a new legislative librarian in Louisiana.
Great Lakes Region: Anne Rottmann, Missouri
1. Hot Issues for 2013:
Debbie Tavenner, Ohio: Fracking and how the shale oil drilling companies will be taxed, election matters, such as how early voting is organized and response to the federal health care law

Anne Rottmann, Missouri: Education funding for both lower and higher education. Coming up with a “formula” to distribute money to state funded higher education institutions. Examining the tax credits in Missouri and possibly initiating caps on amounts awarded. Election issues, including voter ID and campaign finance. The Missouri General Assembly now has a “veto proof” majority in both the House of Representatives and the Senate. The House of Representatives has the greatest number of Republicans they have ever had: 110 Republicans to 53 Democrats.
Julie Pohlman, Wisconsin: Mining, Medicaid/Badgercare (health exchanges) and education funding.
2. Future Training  Topics:
Debbie Tavenner’s suggestions on topics for PDS are these: Westlaw Next and LexisAdvance – what’s behind the new search systems? Digital documents and how we are dealing with them in our collections. Some “innovative” programs at State Libraries or Legislative Libraries.  What’s new in Library education?
Anne Rottmann, Missouri: Archiving in a digital age. Roundtable discussion on what services your library provides to the legislature. What’s new? Finding the library’s niche.
Julie Pohlman, Wisconsin: How will Resource Description and Access (RDA), the new cataloging rules, affect your library?
3. Interest in a 2013 PDS:
Debbie Tavenner says Ohio has a high interest in attending a future PDS. Travel seems to be a possibility now for them.

 Anne Rottmann says her interest is high in attending a PDS. She just hopes that the powers that be grant permission.
Julie Pohlman has moderate interest. She attended two NCSL events in 2012 so funding might not be available for 2013.
Central Northern Region: Robbie LaFleur, Minnesota
It's been a dramatic week in Minnesota, with both bodies shifting power after the elections and the defeat of both constitutional amendments. The library is hosting a reception in the library with 42 new House members and their families and anyone else who shows up.
1. Hot Issues for 2013:Among our central northern states, the most often mentioned issue for 2013 was education. If we had seen one another's answers, I'll bet we all could have come up with more issues in common.
Jonetta Douglas, Iowa: Education reform will likely be considered after much interim work on the issue.
Sonia Gavin, Montana: Oil production, medical marijuana, wildfires and health care.
Clare Charlson, South Dakota: Education issues, including funding for K-12 and higher education, teacher salaries, Medicaid and other health insurance issues, budgetary and tax issues and issues regarding hunting, fishing and state parks.
Wendy Madsen, Wyoming: Revenue is one of the biggest issues, since the state relies on natural gas revenue and prices have dropped.
Betsy Haugen and Jess Hopeman, Minnesota: Health care exchanges, election law changes, Sunset Committee recommendations, election law changes, school funding and teacher seniority and civil unions/gay marriage.
2. Future Training Topics:
Webinar ideas include using social media and constituent relations (Sonia Gavin), issues surrounding historic preservation (Clare Charlson), records management (Wendy Madsen) and team building efforts across departments (Betsy Haugen).
3. Interest in a 2013 PDS:
Responses about attending a PDS varied. Jonetta hopes to attend. As a staff section officer, Sonia Gavin may have to choose among meetings. Betsy Haugen has high interest as do other Minnesota librarians. Wendy Madsen belongs to other staff sections too, so she is interested in a Super PDS to attend a wide scope of sessions. Clare Charlson is unlikely to be able to go.
Additional Staff Updates From the Region:
Jonetta Douglas from Iowa reported that she still has library duties but is now working within the tables and indexing unit of legislative services. They are responsible for indexing the documents that are produced by legislative services.
Wendy Madsen, the Legislative Information Officer for the Wyoming Legislature, contributed. Wyoming doesn't have a legislative librarian but she serves in that role to a limited extent.
Central Southern Region: Molly Otto, Colorado
1. Hot Issues for 2013:
From Tracey Kimball, New Mexico: We expect our 2013 session issues to include corporate taxes of all flavors, from lowering corporate income tax rates to "combined reporting" for big box retailers, public employee retirement funds solvency, "social promotion" for students not proficient in reading by the end of third grade and drivers' licenses for foreign nationals. Even before the general election we know that about 25 percent of our members will be new and bring additional issues to the mix.
From Shelley Day, Utah: Well, working in a nonpartisan office, it's not really my call to make. So I'll just mention an article posted in the Deseret News in which Republican political consultant LaVarr Webb says limited government and low taxes. Democrat and Former House Minority Leader Frank Pignanelli compares the question to visiting Costco. How's that for being safe?
From Molly Otto, Colorado: Since I also work in a nonpartisan office, I am not in the position to accurately predict what will be the "hot" issues in the legislature next session. It is possible that same sex marriage, medical marijuana and fracking may be topics that are addressed.
From Mary Camp, Texas: Water policy, school finance and transportation are expected to be major issues. Other issues that may be addressed include school vouchers, educational accountability, the juvenile justice system and the state budget process.
2. Future Training Topics:
Tracey Kimball, New Mexico: This thought may be more on the level of a PDS roundtable than a webinar but I wonder if any legislative libraries try to capture and preserve news or analysis from political bloggers' web sites?
Shelley Day, Utah: I would love to see more joint webinars with other staff sections. I think mainly because we can benefit legislative staff in ways that are not quite or fully realized. With younger employees entering the legislative environment, I think it's critical that we maintain a strong and effective presence, showing them the way and providing services that are mind blowing!
Molly Otto, Colorado: Preservation and digitization of non-print media, such as audio tapes; CD's; computer files, etc.
Mary Camp, Texas: We would be interested in hearing more about the use of technology and social media in the Legislature.
3. Interest in a 2013 PDS:
Tracey Kimball says “My level of interest in a PDS next year is high and unless there's more economic bad news between now and then, it looks likely that I would be able to go. Someplace close by and relatively inexpensive would be perfect for me.”
Shelley Day says “My interest is high! We need to meet together. And a series of round table discussions would be great. We need the interaction more now than ever. Webinar presentations are improving and so can our professional development meetings when meeting together in one physical location.”
Molly Otto says, “I am definitely interested in attending the PDS, depending on the budget.”
Mary Camp says, “We might be interested, if funding allows.”
Other News From the Region:
Molly shares that the Colorado economy and state budget are slowly improving and growing. The Governor announced the other day that state employees may expect a 1.5% pay increase next year, after four years without a raise. Due to term limits, there are 18 state Senate races and 55 House  races this election season, so new candidates and the incumbents have been very busy campaigning!
West Coastal Region: Maeve Roche, California
1. Hot Issues for 2013:
From Sabah Eltareb, California: Reduced staff, the evolving nature of services, going-digital issues and concerns and good practices.
From Maeve Roche, California: Deficits--What happens if the two tax measures on the fall ballot do not pass? Propositions 30 and 38 are initiatives that would impose temporary taxes to support schools. If they don’t pass, potential cuts to K-12 funding would be deep and devastating. And, how will this impact our State Library budget?
From Kristin Ford, Idaho: Here in Idaho, we’ve had a very lively election season. Between redistricting and retirements, we anticipate at least a 30 percent turnover in the legislature, possibly as high as 45 percent new faces!  This in turn has us planning for our New Legislator Orientation program in early December. It will be a steep learning curve for all the new legislators and a lot of work for us getting them up to speed!  Also on the ballot are some very controversial education referendums and I expect that no matter which way the vote turns out, it will create the need for clean-up legislation in the area of education in  the 2013 session.
From Nan Bowers, Nevada: Nevada is still struggling with a slow economy, so revenue sources and taxation are high on the list for 2013. Education funding and implementation of the Affordable Care Act are sure to be scrutinized.  Our legal drafting staff has received 561 bill draft requests as of Oct. 1, ranging from interactive gaming to taxicabs to fishing.
2. Potential training topics:
Sabah Eltareb, California: Effective communications in legislative setting and the effect of reduction/elimination of print resources on our work/services.
Kristin Ford, Idaho: In future LRL meetings and webinars, I’d like to get tutorials/advice/hand-holding from the more technologically-savvy libraries. I’ve been working up a Facebook page for the Library, and thinking of using other technologies, but I just haven’t quite had the nerve to pull the trigger on it yet. We are a bit slow-moving and conservative here. Apparently there is this new thing called the telegraph that I was thinking of getting.
3. Interest in a 2013 PDS:
Sabah Eltareb reports that her interest is middle to high: "It's valuable to meet, but not sure this is the best return of funds for members, and wanting greater engagement by colleagues.”
Maeve Roche says, “It depends on the program and cost, but I think it might be interesting to attend a seminar.”
Kristen Ford says, “My level of interest in a 2013 NCSL seminar is extremely high. I am likely to attend, especially if the programs are full of practical and helpful information!”
Nan Bowers says, “I think Nevada will be sending a librarian to the PDS in 2013.”


2012 Notable Documents Awards Winners

The competition for the 2012 Notable Documents Awards saw a record number of nominations, with 45 documents submitted from 11 states.  Kristin Ford of Idaho served as chair of this year’s Notable Documents Awards Committee. Committee members were Carol Blackburn and Elizabeth Lincoln of Minnesota, Ingrid Hernquist of New Jersey and Frances Thomas of Louisiana.  The committee used a score sheet to rate each document on criteria such as organization, bibliographic strength, contemporary interest to legislatures and contributions to a field of knowledge.  Winners of the 2012 Notable Documents Awards were announced in Chicago at the LRL Business Meeting, held in conjunction with NCSL’s 2012 Legislative Summit.
2012 Notable Documents Awards Winners
Category: State Government History Compilation
Publication: California’s Legislature
Author: California State Assembly, Office of the Chief Clerk

Publication: Vetoed Bills of the Nevada Legislature 1899 – 2011
Author: Nevada Legislative Counsel Bureau Research Library

Publication: Amendments to the Texas Constitution Since 1876
Author: Texas Legislative Council

Category: Performance Evaluations
Publication: Lottery Operations and Charitable Gaming (Idaho)
Author: Idaho Office of Performance Evaluations

Publication: Compared to Other States’ Retirement Plans, TSERS is Well Funded and Its Plan Features Are Typical or Less Generous
Author: North Carolina General Assembly, Program Evaluation Division

Category: Statistical Analysis

Publication: Kentucky District Data Profiles School year 2010
Author: Kentucky Legislative Research Commission, Office of Education Accountability

Publication: The Wisconsin Scorecard: How Wisconsin Compares to Other States
Author: Wisconsin Legislative Reference Bureau

Category: Public Policy
Publication: Ash Management Guidelines for Private Forest Landowners
Author: University of Minnesota Extension; Minnesota Dept. of Natural Resources

Publication: The Coke Can from Columbus – An Analysis of Methods for Increasing Recycling and Solid Waste Diversion in Montana
Author: Environmental Quality Council, Montana Legislature

NCSL Publications

NCSL Reports

  • Natural Gas Development and Hydraulic Fracturing: A Policymaker’s Guide–Pless, Jacquelyn
  • On the Move: State Strategies for 21st Century Transportation Solutions–Shinkle, Douglas, Rall, Jamie, and Wheet, Alice
  • State Tax Update:  August 2012–NCSL Fiscal Affairs Program
  • State Budget Update: Summer 2012–NCSL Fiscal Affairs Program
  • Restoring and Protecting Floodplains: State Policy Options–Morandi, Larry
  • 2012 Immigration-Related Laws and Resolutions in the States (Jan.–June, 2012)–Morse, Anne
  • Preparing a Pipeline of Effective Principals–Shelton, Sara
  • Parliamentary Procedure: A Legislators’ Guide–Erickson, Brenda

July 2012

  • Teens and Distracted Driving: Learning to Drive in the Digital Age–Vol. 20, No. 25
  • Transit-Oriented Development–Vol. 20, No. 26
  • State-Tribal Relations: A Balance of Authority–Vol. 20, No. 27
  • National Prevention Strategy–Vol. 20, No. 28

August 2012

  • Managing Transportation Demand: HOV and HOT Lanes–Vol. 20, No. 31
  • Securing the Nation’s Energy Future–Vol. 20, No. 32
  • Performance-Based Funding for Higher Education–Vol. 20, No. 30
  • Primary Care and Public Health Working Together–Vol. 20, No. 29

September 2012

  • Helping Military Veterans With Their Transportation Needs–Vol. 20, No. 34
  • The Medical Home Model of Care: Reducing Costs and Improving Quality–Vol. 20, No. 33
  • Community Development Financial Institutions–Vol. 20, No. 35
  • States Renewing Attention to Prostate Cancer–Vol. 20, No. 36

October 2012

  • Dealing With Chemicals of Concern and the New Green Chemistry–Vol. 20, No. 37
  • Disproportionate Minority Contact–Vol. 20, No. 40
  • Children's Oral Health–Vol. 20, No. 38
  • Public-Private Partnerships in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program–Vol. 20, No. 39

November 2012

  • Healthy Housing–Vol. 20, No. 44 
  • Building Energy Codes–Vol. 20, No. 42 
  • End Stage Renal Disease–Vol. 20, No. 43 
  • State Innovations in School Nutrition–Vol. 20, No. 41


Copyright Webinar

Copyright Issues forA  Legislative Audience: Copy Right and Copy Wrong
Thursday, Dec. 13, 2012 
3 p.m. Eastern
Sponsored by LRL and the Legal Services Staff Section
Copyright is a complex set of intellectual property laws, designed to protect the rights of authors in their published and unpublished works.  Under federal and state copyright laws, authors can sue users who violate their rights without permission or compensation.  Legislative staff often have to deal with copyright questions, over what constitutes a fair use exception of materials or the extent to which materials are in the public domain and may be shared with the public.
Online registration will open by Nov. 26, 2012.  For more information, contact Jeanne Mejeur