The U.S. Government Printing Office (GPO) and the University of Memphis opened a gateway site giving the public free access to many of the Nation's most important Federal documents via an Internet connection or a phone call.
The Congressional Record, Federal Register, Congressional Bills, U.S. Code and other Federal databases are now available to off-site users through the University of Memphis Libraries, Memphis, TN. The library, one in the nation's system of nearly 1,400 Federal depository libraries, is offering free public access to the GPO databases as part of an expanding gateway program. Each gateway operates through a cooperative arrangement with one of the Nation's Federal depository libraries.
Users may access the Memphis gateway through a telnet session (msuvx1.memphis.edu; login as library; confirm choice of VT100 terminal emulation; connect to University Library; from the menu select Find; then choose database; select GPO Access); or users with a personal computer, a phone modem, and telecommunications software may connect from home or office by dialing (901)678- 3600; login as guest and follow the instructions above. Gateway users may search the databases as frequently as they like, without charge. For local user support, contact Saundra Williams, (901) 678-2206 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
"It is our goal to establish local outlets to the GPO electronic system in every State," said Public Printer Michael F. DiMario, the head of the GPO. "We want these important Government publications available to the American public around the clock, 7 days a week."
The available databases are already available for free electronic searches to walk-in patrons of some 490 of the Nation's depository libraries under the "GPO Access" program authorized by law and launched in June 1994. There is at least one Federal depository library in every Congressional District.
GPO is working with depository libraries to develop model gateways for no-fee public access to GPO's databases. Built on existing campus and public networks, these gateway depositories serve as models for the nationwide depository library system.
Using the existing depository libraries is the best way to link the public with the GPO system," DiMario said. "Public libraries, other universities and colleges, and community networks will be added rapidly to get our information out." Gateways have been established in Alaska, Georgia, Missouri, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Virginia, Washington, Indiana, California, Arizona, Colorado, Oregon, Texas and the District of Columbia. Other depository gateways are being developed in nearly every state in the nation.
Local depository libraries will sponsor the program and assist in supporting users. The libraries will connect to GPO through the Internet. The new GPO initiative permits libraries to provide free off-site access through their own computer systems or those of partner networks in their areas..
GPO Access online interactive system consists of three individual services:
The Federal Register Service: the Federal Register database includes proposed and final Federal regulations and Presidential documents as well as meeting and grant notices and the semiannual Unified Regulatory Agenda database.
Congressional Record Service: Congressional Record database includes the activities and debates of Congress dating back to January 1994, the History of Bills database and the Congressional Record Indexes from 1983 forward.
Legislative Service: the Congressional Bills database includes all published versions of House and Senate bills from the 103d and 104th Congresses, Public Laws of the 104th Congress, the U.S. Code database and the History of Bills database.
The full text of the documents is available the day of publication. Also available is the GPO Access Users Manual.
Other Online Databases: GAO Reports, all published reports, except correspondence and reports that are restricted or classified, is a free database sponsored by the General accounting Office. The FY 1995 database is updated two business days after the reports are released. Other databases will be added as they become available.
The GPO Access services are authorized by Public Law 103-40, the Government Printing Office Electronic Information Access Enhancement Act of 1993. Under this law, depository libraries have access to the GPO service without charge. The online publications are available separately with low-cost subscriptions for anyone who wishes to purchase directly from GPO.
Inquiries about the availability of GPO Access services should be directed to the GPO Access User Support Team at Tel: (202) 512-1530; Fax: (202) 512-1262; or Internet e-mail: <email@example.com>. Information about the GPO Access and GPO products and services can also be obtained via U.S. Fax Watch, the GPO's fax-on-demand service, by dialing (202) 512- 1716.
William Thompson: (202)512-1002
Internet e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org --_-+-_-07/12/95 19:05:31-_-+-_--