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Federal Government Resources on the Internet: An A-to-Z Sampler

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This guide provides just a small sample of the wealth of federal government information available on the Internet.

A   American Indian Tribes

American Indian Tribes that are officially recognized by the federal government. A list is found at the Interior Department’s Bureau of Indian Affairs website. The Bureau’s Puget Sound Agency maintains a website that includes a list of and contact information for the tribes in this area.

B   Bonds

Bonds, T-bills, and government securities information is provided by the Bureau of Public Debt. Learn how much your old U.S. Savings Bonds are now worth, discover the size of the public debt today or at any date in the past, and read interpretations of the Government Securities Act regulations.

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C   Criminal Justice Statistics

Criminal justice statistics are collected and processed by the Justice Department’s Bureau of Justice Statistics. The Bureau’s website contains many full-text statistical reports on capital punishment, crime victims, drugs, juvenile offenders, law enforcement, prisoners, prosecutors, sentencing, sex offenders, and related issues. This site also links to the Sourcebook of Criminal Justice Statistics maintained by the University of Albany.

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D   Death Penalty

Bureau of Justice Statistics, Capital Punishment Statistics

The Ninth Circuit Capital Punishment Handbook

Judicial Conference of the United States, Federal Death Penalty Cases: Recommendations Concerning the Cost and Quality of Defense Representation

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E    ECDIC

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Environmental Enforcement Compliance Docket and Information Center (ECDIC) contains “rulemaking dockets, special (non-rulemaking) dockets, policy and guidance documents, and enforcement and compliance assistance publications.” Enforcement policies and guidance documents are also available under specific topics, including chemical accidents, cleanup enforcement, and RCRA (Resource Conservation and Recovery Act) enforcement.

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F    FDSys

FDSys is a resource for many federal government legal resources, and it replaced GPO Access (below) as of November 2011. FDSys contains many of the documents found on GPO Access and includes other items of note such as the Budget of the United States Government for the years 1996–2013 and analysis and interpretation of the U.S. Constitution.

Foreign Countries

map.JPGThe CIA’s The World Factbook has information on communications, economy, geography, government, military, people, statistics, transnational issues, and transportation.

The State Department’s Countries and Regions website offers a comprehensive list of independent countries, Background Notes, the Diplomatic List, chiefs of state and cabinet ministers, and U.S. embassies and consulates. The State Department also prepares the annual Country Reports on Human Rights Practices with country-by-country summaries, 1999 to date, and the Country Commercial Guides series, with detailed analysis of foreign countries’ commercial, economic, and political environments; and trade agreements between the U.S. and foreign countries concerning manufactured goods and services can be found at the Commerce Department’s Trade Compliance Center.

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G   GPO Access

GPO Access (Government Printing Office) is an archive of federal government legal resources through 2011, including material from all three branches of government.

Government Ethics

The Office of Government Ethics sets ethics standards and resolves conflict of interest issues for federal employees working in the executive branch of government. The office website provides judicial decisions and guidance regarding conflict of interest issues, model practices for executive branch agencies, and offers education and training for federal employees and ethics officials.

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H   Homeland Security

homeland.JPGHomeland Security houses a numerous federal agencies, including U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, U.S. Customs and Border Protection, the U.S. Coast Guard, the Transportation Security Administration, and the Ombudsman’s Office for Citizenship and Immigration Services. Homeland Security also includes a variety of information on topics such as cybersecurity and internet scams, Federal Air Marshals, and applying for natural disaster assistance.

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I     Intellectual Property

Intellectual property, generally comprised of copyrights, trademarks, and patents, can be found on a variety of federal websites. The U.S. Copyright Office enables users to learn about copyright law, search copyright records, and file copyright applications. Similarly, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office enables users to learn about patent and trademark law, search patent and trademark records, and file patent and trademark applications.

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J    Judicial Biographies

judiciary.JPGJudicial biographies are posted at the Federal Judicial Center’s History of the Federal Judiciary website. The Federal Judges Biographical Database contains basic biographical and judicial service information for judges serving on Circuit, District, and Supreme Courts since 1789, arranged by judge's name. See also the Gallagher guide on judicial biographies.

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K   Kids

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Kids will enjoy Ben’s Guide to U.S. Government for Kids. Grade-specific collections of links cover history, government, elections, citizenship, symbols, and other topics, along with games, activities, glossaries, and links to other kid-related federal websites.

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L    Legal Resources

Lots of legal resources are linked to from the Law Library’s Free Law Online / Internet Legal Resources page.

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M    Military Justice

Military Justice from the Air Force Judge Advocate General includes the text of the Uniform Code of Military Justice, the Manual for Courts Martial (containing the Rules for Courts-Martial), a glossary of terms, and links to other armed forces websites.

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N   Nuclear Power

energy.JPGThe Energy Information Administration provides a state-by-state list of nuclear reactors

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission and the Hanford Site are also important resources.

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O    OSHA

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Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) provides directives, interpretation letters, inspection data, statistics, and manuals.

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P     Prospective Legal Employers

Looking for a job with the federal government?

Jobs with the federal judiciary can be found in the Federal Law Clerk Information System.

America’s Job Bank has a Legal and Compliance job category.

Other potential employers include the Office of Personnel Management; the Legal Services Corporation, Employment Opportunities; and the Justice Department, Office of Attorney Recruitment and Management.

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Q     Quakes & Other Natural Disasters

fema.JPGQuake, flood, hurricane, tornado, and other natural disaster victims and potential victims will find useful information on emergency mitigation and disaster preparedness at the Federal Emergency Management Administration’s website.

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R    Recalls & Vehicle Defects

Recalls and vehicle defects notices are posted by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. The site also includes data on rollovers and crash-testing for a variety of vehicles.

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S    Sentencing Guidelines

Sentencing Guidelines, manuals, and amendments are made available by the U.S. Sentencing Commission. The website also includes interesting federal sentencing statistics, comparing sentencing in individual circuits, states, or districts against national averages.

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T    Tax Forms

irs.JPGTax Forms of the interactive variety are growing in number. For several years the IRS website has included copies of tax forms, instructions, and publications. The site has recently expanded the number and variety of fill-in-the-blank forms, using the interactive Portable Document Format. See also the Gallagher guide on researching federal tax issues.

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U   Unemployment Compensation

Unemployment Compensation and insurance information is provided by the Labor Department’s Employment and Training Administration. The site offers federal and state legal and statistical information, including a Comparison of State UI Laws and Significant Provisions of State UI Laws, research publications and bibliographies, and links to related federal sites. See also the Gallagher guide on conducting unemployment law research.

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V   Veterans Affairs

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Veterans Affairs Department provides a wealth of resources, including online benefit applications, special program information, demographic and other statistics, home loan programs, military funerals and burial benefits, and more.

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W   Women & Work

Small Business Administration, Office of Women’s Business Ownership has information on services, procurement opportunities, lending programs, and venture capital.

Labor Department, Women’s Bureau, provides fact sheets and statistical reports, equal pay information, child and elder care tips, regional information, and links to other federal agencies and programs.

National Child Care Information Center is a project of the Health and Human Services Department, Administration for Children and Families, Child Care Bureau. The website offers several directories, a searchable database of facilities and services by state or region, and numerous publications.

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X   X-Presidents & First Ladies

taylor.JPGX-Presidents and First Ladies information and portraits are available at several websites.

The National Portrait Gallery’s Hall of President.

The Library of Congress’s American Memory Project offers "By Popular Demand: Portraits of the Presidents and First Ladies, 1789–Present." Also available are pathfinders to documents and photographs on each of the Presidents.

Public Papers of the Presidents of the United States, 1993–1999, includes photographs as well as documents.

The State Department Historian’s Office provides information on the President’s foreign travels, dating from Theodore Roosevelt.

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The National Archives and Records Administration has posted “Tokens and Treasures,” an online exhibit of selected gifts to twelve former Presidents. NARA also maintains a list of Presidential libraries and links to their websites.

The Social Security Administration maintains a page of selected “Presidential Quotations.

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Y    Yellowstone and Other National Parks

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Yellowstone National Park information and information on other national parks and recreational opportunities on federal land can be found at the National Parks Service website.

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Z    Zip Codes

Zip Codes, including the Zip +4 are provided by the U. S. Postal Service.

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