Free Access to State Legislative Information Paves Way for Political Action

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BillTrack50 opens the door for increased government transparency and more informed voters

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Whether it is hydro-fracking, significant budget changes or a simple traffic law change on the line, being able to access information in a centralized, easily searchable location and look at trends across states is more important than ever.

From the NonProfit Technology Conference 2012, LegiNation, today announced open access to the BillTrack50 database of state bills to help individuals find relevant legislation across states, get informed and take action regarding new and proposed laws that impact their personal freedoms, interests and daily life.

Recent efforts such as the Occupy movement and proposed federal legislation such as the Protect Intellectual Property Act (PIPA), the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) have captured the attention of the media and served to mobilize individuals who might not normally follow politics. In a Presidential election year with a significant number of new bills and issues, voters and special interest groups have an increased need to stay informed of new legislation and make decisions about candidates.

Adriel Hampton is founder of Government 2.0 Radio, an outspoken advocate for government transparency and sits on the board of Denver-based LegiNation. He says it is often possible to spot legislative trends by looking across state bills and then take appropriate action to block or support similar legislation in your state.

“It’s always important that people have the best possible access to information for legislation that affects them and it’s especially important in an election year and congressional cycle with more legislation being introduced. You can see how the recent spate of voter ID laws has spread from state to state. Whether it is hydro-fracking, significant budget changes or a simple traffic law change on the line, being able to access information in a centralized, easily searchable location and look at trends across states is more important than ever,” Mr. Hampton said.

Visitors to http://www.billtrack50.com have access to an unlimited number of state by state searches on keywords to find bills on topics that are important to them. BillTrack50 searches the full text of the bills not just the headline or bill’s title making it significantly easier to discover relevant legislation that can be hidden within seemingly unrelated bills. Bills can then be reviewed in full and shared with others via email, Twitter, a Web site or blog by a permanent link. Users can then review the bill and find the contact information for sponsors, cosponsors and other legislators to take further action.

Karen Suhaka, president of LegiNation , says responses such as that to the Susan G. Komen controversy show how political or issue-based advocacy has the power to impact government and businesses. While federal action can be a lengthy process, response at the state level legislation can have a more direct and immediate impact.

“The time for voters to be informed and act on state legislation is now – this is the year for participation. Recent events have damaged the American public’s trust and people are realizing that they must help keep organizations accountable. By staying informed, they can participate in political process, have a meaningful dialogue and act to ensure the issues important to them are addressed."

For free access to bills across the 50 states please visit http://www.billtrack50.com

About LegiNation
LegiNation, Inc. was founded with the goal of making state level legislation more readily available to the professionals who need it, and even more importantly to the public at large. We are building products and Web sites to spark a renaissance in American politics, leveraging the Internet to create the dialog so desperately needed amongst our elected officials, legislative professionals, and everyday citizens.

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Tamarie Johnson
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