Congressional Research Service

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Congressional Research Service

The Congressional Research Service (CRS) is a branch of the Library of Congress that provides objective, nonpartisan research, analysis, and information to assist Congress in its legislative, oversight, and representative functions. U.S. senators and representatives, and their staffs consult the CRS for timely and accurate information regarding major issues and policies. The CRS researches and advises on questions and concerns related to many subject areas. It is organized into six interdisciplinary research divisions: American Law; Domestic Social Policy; Foreign Affairs, Defense and Trade; Government and Finance; Information Research; and Resources, Science and Industry. Each division is organized into smaller sections, which focus on specific areas of public policy. The work of these divisions is supported by five offices: Congressional Affairs and Counselor to the Director; Finance and Administration; Information Resources Management; Legislative Information; and Workforce Development.

The CRS is made up of two reference divisions: the Congressional Reference Division and the Library Services Division. These provide reference, bibliographic, and other information services using advanced methods of computerized searching.

The CRS conducts a host of other support activities for Congress. It develops specialized reading lists for members of Congress and their staffs. It operates the Library of Congress's automated legislative information systems, including digests of all public bills and briefing papers on major legislative issues. It also attempts to anticipate congressional research needs, and it develops seminars that allow members of Congress, their staffs, CRS researchers, and outside experts to exchange ideas on timely issues. The CRS has produced programs on the congressional Cable Television system, and it provides language service support and translations for members of Congress.

The CRS is governed by a director, a deputy director, and a management team. The highest-level researchers are called senior specialists. They are often nationally and internationally recognized experts in their field of study. CRS offices include Special Programs, Operations, Policy, and Research Coordination.

The Congressional Research Service evolved from the Legislative Reference Service, which was created by the Legislative Reorganization Act of 1946 (codified as amended at Act of Aug. 2, 1946, ch. 753, 60 Stat. 812), and the Legislative Reorganization Act of 1970 (codified as amended at Act of Oct. 26, 1970, Pub. L. No. 91-510, 84 Stat. 1140). In the beginning of the twenty-first century, the CRS experienced tremendous growth as Congress sought to respond to the increasing scope and complexity of public policy issues. Specifically, the service expanded its website to enhance on-line research. In 2001, over 540,000 users accessed the CRS site to obtain reports and briefs. The CRS anticipates expanding web services as Congress demands 24-hour access to its research data.

Further readings

Congressional Research Service. 2001 Annual Report. Available online at <> (accessed May 20, 2003).

References in periodicals archive ?
Los objetivos principales del Congressional Research Service son tres: a) asesorar a las Comisiones del Congreso y los parlamentarios por medio de los analisis, evaluaciones y opiniones de los temas que se discutan en el interior del organo Legislativo; b) elaboracion de los dictamenes tecnicos, en los que se emiten recomendaciones sobre temas especificos y, c) evaluacion de los resultados de politicas aplicadas por los organos del Estado.
The Electronic Warfare Working Group (EWWG) released a Congressional Research Service (CRS) study on the state of EW as part of the US arsenal.
Questioning the legitimacy of recent reinvention initiatives--particularly as they relate to enterprise government, Ron Moe of the Congressional Research Service offers a critical review of the role and efforts of the National Partnership for Reinventing Government (NPR) to reform executive branch management.
8% share in 1992, according to the report compiled by the Congressional Research Service.
One such proposal, from the Congressional Research Service, suggests that Section 4734 be revised to make it illegal for a paid counselor to advise or assist an individual in not disclosing the disposition of assets to qualify for Medicaid.
I looked up the subject `conscience' recently in Respectfully Quoted, a dictionary of quotations requested by Senators and Representatives from the Congressional Research Service.
In addition to the Congressional Research Service and Senate Library, I made it a point to get first crack at the health staff office mail.
His credentials as a policy analyst include experience as head of the natural resources-policy research office of the Congressional Research Service in the Library of Congress, senior associate at the Conservation Foundation, executive director of the Open Space Institute, and president of the American Land Forum.
Despite a payroll of 37,000 to serve the Congress--including the staffs of the Congressional Budget Office, General Accounting Office, Congressional Research Service and Office of Technology Assessment--and more than two million people grinding away in the federal bureaucracy, official Washington seems to have no idea where it has been or where it is going.
On November 27, 1989, the Congressional Research Service (CRS) issued a report entitled "Value-Added Tax: Concepts, Policy Issues, and OECD Experiences.
The Congressional Research Service estimates that they now account for 47 percent of all federal pension payouts.
Yemen received 64 million dollars this year, compared to 134 million dollars last year, according to Congressional Research Service.

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