Straight from the AALL Computing Services SIS listserv – the official press release:
Library of Congress taps LII for Expertise in Legislative Information
The US Library of Congress chose the Legal Information Institute at Cornell University (LII) to help develop new methods to preserve, analyze, organize, and present Congressional legislative information and materials digitally. The project is headed by LII Director Thomas R. Bruce. Dave Shetland, Sara Frug, and Wayne Weibel will make up the rest of the LII’s team of experts.
Long-time LII collaborators Metadata Management Associates will work with LII on this important project. “This project introduces the idea of a model that reflects the life cycle of legislation–a significantly different model than the one used in traditional library materials,” says Diane Hillmann, Partner at MMA. Hillmann’s team will be joined by John Joergensen, a law librarian at Rutgers University (Camden), and Robert Richards, each well known for their work in library-based legal informatics.
The work and research LII provides Library of Congress will form the foundation of the Library’s plans to improve digital access to historical and current Congressional legislative information. Important Congressional documents — bills, Presidential documents, committee reports, public laws, and the United States Code among others — will be better organized and easier to find online for scholars, researchers, and average citizens, alike. The project will significantly improve public access to Congressional materials through THOMAS — Congress’ main electronic point of access for the public, as well as the Legislative Information System (LIS) used internally by the Senate and the House of Representatives.
“We want to connect everything that’s known about a particular piece of legislation — no matter where it is in the process — to every other, and to information about the things and people that surround it — who sponsored it, the things it governs, the process by which it’s prepared, debated, and implemented,” said Tom Bruce, Director of the LII. “Our aim is to learn everything we can about what Congress, government, and citizens want to do with this information and design an architecture, centered on practical use of the Semantic Web, that will allow them not only to do those things, but things nobody’s thought of yet”.