Law Day

May 1, 2018

Since 1958 our Nation has celebrated a unique holiday every year on May 1. According the American Bar Association (ABA), Law Day is held on May 1 every year to celebrate the role of law in our society and to promote a deeper understanding of the legal profession.

The foundation of Law Day is the annual appreciation of the deeper meaning behind President Dwight D. Eisenhower’s quote that, “If civilization is to survive, it must choose the rule of law.” Eisenhower was the first president to officially recognize Law Day.

The ABA announces a theme every year to guide the celebration and offer a specific focus. This year’s theme is “Separation of Powers: The Framework for Freedom.” The U.S. Government Publishing Office (GPO) offers a great resource for teaching children about this topic on Ben’s Guide to the U.S. Government.

If you’re looking for something more, perhaps you can dive deep into the Code of Federal Regulations or peruse through the list of Public and Private Laws. These are hosted digitally by GPO at govinfo.gov along with the Congressional Bills and the Statutes At Large.

There are so many aspects of the law to review for your annual celebration, and GPO has you covered if you need a good place to start. Between govinfo and the Catalog of U.S. Government Publications (CGP), GPO has digital copies of just about anything you could think of.

GPO also offers access to several items that can help your organization celebrate this unique history. The Government Bookstore offers several titles about this topic. Some of those include:

  • Compilation of Federal Ethics Laws This compilation of Federal ethics laws has been prepared by the Office of Government Ethics (OGE) for the ethics community. In preparing this book, they have included not only the laws within the jurisdiction of the ethics program, but also other related statutes on which ethics officials are often called upon to provide advice to agency employees. OGE hopes that this book will be a useful tool to ethics officials in carrying out their important work of helping Federal employees to fulfill the public trust placed in them when they enter public service.

This compilation includes all provisions signed into law through the end of the 114th Congress.

  • How Our Laws Are Made, 2007 This brochure is intended to provide a basic outline of the numerous steps of our Federal law making process from the source of an idea for a legislative proposal through its publication as a statute. The legislative process is a matter about which every person should be well informed in order to understand and appreciate the work of Congress.
  • How a Bill Becomes a Law (Poster) – Displays an outline of the many steps in our Federal law making process from the introduction of a bill by any Member through passage by the U.S. House of Representatives and U.S. Senate and approved by the President of the United States. 8.5 x 11 in.

GPO’s commitment to Keeping America Informed will continue to strive to provide access to Government information on all issues that affect the public in all aspects of their life.

The GPO Online Bookstore – Easy Access to Federal Publications

HOW DO I OBTAIN THESE RESOURCES?

Shop Online Anytime: You can buy eBooks or print publications —with FREE Standard Shipping worldwide— from the U.S. Government Online Bookstore at https://bookstore.gpo.gov.

Shop our Retail Store: Buy a copy of any print editions from this collection at GPO’s retail bookstore at 710 North Capitol Street NW, Washington, DC 20401, open Monday–Friday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., except Federal holidays, Call (202) 512-0132 for information or to arrange in-store pick-up.

Order by Phone: Call our Customer Contact Center Monday through Friday, 8 am to 5:30 pm Eastern (except US Federal holidays). From US and Canada, call toll-free 1.866.512.1800. DC or International customers call +1.202.512.1800.

Visit a Federal depository library: Search for U.S. Government publications in a nearby Federal depository library. You can find the records for most titles in GPO’s Catalog of U.S. Government Publications.

About the author: Blogger contributor Scott Pauley is a Writer and Editor in GPO’s Library Services and Content Management offices.


Goodbye GPO Access, Hello FDsys

March 16, 2012

Guest blogger Kelly Seifert, Lead Planning Specialist for GPO’s Library Services & Content Management Division, writes about the final switchover from GPO Access to FDsys, GPO’s state-of-the-art digital database of Federal information.

Farewell, GPO Access! GPO’s Federal Digital System (FDsys) is here to stay and is better than ever.

Today, March 16, 2012, marks a momentous occasion for the Government Printing Office and its groundbreaking service, GPO Access. After 16 years of keeping America informed, the GPO Access website is shutting down and been replaced by its successor, GPO’s Federal Digital System (FDsys).

Image: Switchover notice from GPO Access to FDsys

All of the information the public had access to on GPO Access and more is available through FDsys (pronounced by “those in the know” as “F – D – sis”).

While not the traditional “Government book” discussed on this blog, we at GPO thought it only appropriate to blog about a service that provides free access to a vast number of Federal Government publications. FDsys provides the American public with free online access to about 50 different collections of U.S. Government information ranging from the Code of Federal Regulations to the U.S. Government Manual to the U.S. Budget.

Image: GPO’s Federal Digital System (FDsys) home page, www.FDsys.gov

GPO Access introduced electronic access to Government information

In 1993, Congress passed the U.S. Government Printing Office Electronic Information Access Enhancement Act (Public Law 103-40), which expanded GPO’s mission to provide access to Federal Government information not only in print, but also electronically. In June 1994, in response to that legislation, GPO launched GPO Access.

FDsys takes electronic access to new levels

Even the best of information systems have to evolve. Thus it was in January 2009 that GPO unveiled the next generation of Government information online with FDsys. The countdown to the shut-down of GPO Access began on December 20, 2010, when FDsys became GPO’s official system of record for free access to information and publications from all three branches of the Federal Government. In November 2011, GPO Access entered its “archive only” state and transitioned its status to historical reference archive. From that point forward, FDsys was GPO’s only resource for access to current, updated information, and now, GPO Access has shut down for good.

Image: FDSys Advanced Search results page

FDsys offers new, improved features to find Government publications

FDsys boasts key enhancements to GPO Access that allow users from librarians to scholars, researchers, lawyers and the public to:

  • Easily search across multiple Government publications;
  • Perform advanced searches against robust metadata about each publication;
  • Construct complex search queries;
  • Refine and narrow searches;
  • Retrieve individual Government documents and publications in seconds directly from each search result;
  • View more information about a publication and access multiple file formats for each search result;
  • Access metadata in standard XML formats;
  • Download content and metadata packaged together as a single ZIP file;
  • Browse FDsys alphabetically by collection, by Congressional committee, by date, and by Government author; and
  • Utilize extensive help tools and tutorials.

Image: List of collections of Federal Government publications available on FDSys

Links to printed versions of Government publications

In addition to providing free access to almost 50 different Government publications online, FDsys also directs you to GPO’s Online Bookstore, where you can buy those same publications, if you wish to have a bound and printed official copy.

As a GPO employee who has worked extensively with FDsys, I think you will really enjoy it and the new, enhanced features that are provided by FDsys for navigating Government information.

How do I find Federal Government publications?

  • Search GPO’s Federal Digital System (FDsys) at www.FDsys.gov.
  • Search GPO’s Catalog of Government Publications (CGP) at http://catalog.gpo.gov.
  • Shop GPO’s Online Bookstore at http://bookstore.gpo.gov/, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and 365 days a year.
  • Visit GPO’s Retail Bookstore at 710 North Capitol Street NW, Washington, DC 20401, open Monday through Friday, 9am to 4pm, except Federal holidays. Call (202) 512-0132 for more information.

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