Legislative History of the USA Patriot Act in HeinOnline

Current Events, Exploring HeinOnline, Statutes at Large, U.S. Federal Legislative History
Shannon Sabo

In response to the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, Congress rushed to pass legislation to alleviate the fears and concerns felt by Americans, and to strengthen national security. The result was the USA Patriot Act, or the Uniting and Strengthening America by Providing Appropriate Tools Required to Intercept and Obstruct Terrorism Act of 2001, signed by President George W. Bush on October 26, 2001. The Patriot Act impacted several existing acts available in HeinOnline's U.S. Statutes at Large library, including:

The USA Patriot Act addressed these acts in multiple ways…

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How a City’s Drinking Water Became Toxic, and What’s Next

Current Events, Statutes at Large, U.S. Federal Legislative History
Shannon Sabo

The water crisis in Flint, Michigan has dominated national news since the story of contaminated water poisoning families, especially children, broke earlier this year when multiple states of emergency were declared. Adding fuel to the outrage is the fact that 57% of Flint’s residents are black, and nearly half of residents live beneath the poverty line.

In April of 2014, the state of Michigan decided to save money by changing Flint’s water supply from Lake Huron to the Flint River. This occurred during a financial state of emergency for Flint, and was supposed to be a temporary solution while a new state-run water supply line to Lake Huron was made ready for connection…

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Exponential Growth of the U.S. Federal Legislative History Library

Content News, U.S. Federal Legislative History
Shannon Sabo

We are committed to increasing the value of your HeinOnline subscription by adding content to existing libraries, creating new collections, and developing new features to improve our users' legal research experiences. Thanks to partnerships with Arnold & Porter and Covington & Burling, we have dramatically increased the number of compiled federal legislative histories available in HeinOnline's U.S. Federal Legislative History Library. January 2016 marks the completion of a massive project in which hundreds of new titles were added to this library with each monthly content release.

Legislative histories are often used to research legislative intent behind one or more provisions of a public law…

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Why Finance Jargon Is Actually Interesting and Should Matter to You

Exploring HeinOnline, Searching, Taxation and Economic Reform in America, U.S. Federal Legislative History
Shannon Sabo

Reading about or discussing banking laws, financial institutions, and accounting information probably defeats Ambien in the sleep-aid war for most people. However, what happens in and to the financial industry almost always affects things like the United States economy, the housing market, and our paychecks.

November 12 marked the 16th anniversary of the repeal of certain parts of the Glass-Steagall Act of 1933. Before your eyes glaze over, think about 2008 for a moment. What could repealing a portion of a 1933 Act in 1999 have to do with 2008, and why should we still care in 2015? Let's break it down.

The Glass-Steagall Act

The Glass-Steagall Act refers to four specific provisions of the U.S…

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Incredible Increase in U.S. Federal Legislative History Library Content!

Content News, U.S. Federal Legislative History, What's New
Shannon Sabo

In April 2014, we blogged about U.S. federal legislative histories in HeinOnline. At the time, we had a combined total of just over 1,000 compiled legislative histories in the U.S. Federal Legislative History Library and select a-la-carte collections. Since then, we have added 1,138 compiled legislative histories to this collection, more than doubling the number of available titles in less than a year and a half! The U.S. Federal Legislative History Library now contains 2,072 titles and more than 4.9 million pages.

Select a-la-carte HeinOnline collections also include legislative histories:

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Enhanced Discoverability of Legislative Histories in HeinOnline

FAQ, U.S. Federal Legislative History, What's New

We recently received a request to include a listing for all public laws in the U.S. Federal Legislative History Library.

HeinOnline contains the full text for hundreds of legislative histories in several HeinOnline collections.  We previously did a blog post on searching for legislative histories and the different collections in which they may be found.

Now we have made it even easier to search for Federal Legislation, by adding listings  for public laws in other collections for which we have full text to the "Browse by: Public Law No." and "Browse by: Popular Name" lists in the U.S. Federal Legislative History homepage.

To illustrate the enhanced capabilities of this feature, we'll do a search for the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act…

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How to find House and Senate Reports in HeinOnline

Exploring HeinOnline, FAQ, Searching, U.S. Federal Legislative History
Shannon Sabo

Are you looking for a particular House or Senate report in HeinOnline, possibly to help determine the legislative intent behind a law? Depending on the information you have, there are different ways to search for these reports, which are almost always going to be located inside a compiled legislative history.

The best and fastest way to find out if a House or Senate report is available in HeinOnline is to determine whether a compiled legislative history for the public law associated with the report is included in the database. For instance, if you are looking for House Report Number 106-778 from the 106th Congress, second session and you know that it pertains to Public Law Number 106-523

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U.S. Federal Legislative Histories and Sources of Compiled Legislative Histories in HeinOnline

FAQ, U.S. Federal Legislative History
Shannon Sabo

Are you conducting research on a particular public law or federal statute? HeinOnline’s U.S. Federal Legislative History Library and several a-la-carte collections contain a combined total of over 1,000 compiled legislative histories. Thanks to our friends at Arnold & Porterwe have added several hundred legislative histories since August of 2013 and will continue to add hundreds more within the next few months.

Compiled legislative histories are comprised of documents that are produced by Congress as a bill is introduced, studied and debated. These legislative documents are often used by attorneys, researchers and courts to help determine the intent behind a law or to clarify ambiguous statutory language. All domestic HeinOnline Core packages include the U.S…

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Tip of the Week: How to Find the Text of a Public Law When All You Have is the Popular Name

Miscellaneous, Statutes at Large, Tip of the Week, U.S. Federal Legislative History

Have you ever found yourself looking for the text of a public law or an act, but you don’t have the public law number or Statutes at Large citation?  This week’s tip will illustrate how you can utilize two different sources in HeinOnline to search for the text by the popular name.

Watch the Tip of the Week on YouTube, or continue reading below the video for the full-text version.

For our example, we are searching for the text of the Securities Act of 1933.

The first resource you can try is the U.S. Statutes at Large library in HeinOnline.  From the U.S. Statutes at Large landing page, click on Browse by Popular Name…

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Tip of the Week: Where can I find a House or Senate Report in HeinOnline?

Tip of the Week, Tips and Tricks, U.S. Federal Legislative History


Committee Reports are considered to be one of the most important documents of legislative history research.  All House and Senate Reports are published in the United States Congressional Serial Set, which is not a resource available in HeinOnline.  However, HeinOnline may still have a House or Senate Report available in it’s  U.S. Federal Legislative History collection which contains more than 1,000 full-text legislative histories. So, how do you determine if we have the report or not?

Check out this week’s how-to video on YouTube, or continue reading below the video for a full-text version.

  1. First, determine what public law the committee report is tied to.
  2. Then, navigate to HeinOnline’s U.S…

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