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Category Archives: Legislation

Harms of AI

NBER – Harms of AI, Daron Acemoglu, Working Paper 29247 DOI 10.3386/w29247 Issue Date “This essay discusses several potential economic, political and social costs of the current path of AI technologies. I argue that if AI continues to be deployed along its current trajectory and remains unregulated, it may produce various social, economic and political harms. These include: damaging competition, consumer privacy and consumer choice; excessively automating work, fueling inequality, inefficiently pushing down wages, and failing to improve worker productivity; and damaging political discourse, democracy’s most fundamental lifeblood. Although there is no conclusive evidence suggesting that these costs are imminent or substantial, it may be useful to understand them before they are fully realized and become harder or even impossible to reverse, precisely because of AI’s promising and wide-reaching potential. I also suggest that these costs are not inherent to the nature of AI technologies, but are related to how they are being used and developed at the moment – to empower corporations and governments against workers and citizens. As a result, efforts to limit and reverse these costs may need to rely on regulation and policies to redirect AI research. Attempts to contain them just by promoting competition may be insufficient.”

Republicans seek Pennsylvania voters’ personal information as they try to review the 2020 results

The New York Times: “Pennsylvania Republicans moved on Wednesday to seek personal information on every voter in the state as part of a brewing partisan review of the 2020 election results, rubber-stamping more than a dozen subpoenas for driver’s license numbers and partial Social Security numbers. The expansive request for personal information, directed at Pennsylvania’s… Continue Reading

Recent Steps Toward Improved Access to Federal Legislation

Information Today – Barbie E. Keiser – “During recent virtual meetings, representatives of several government entities showed how they had used the time during the pandemic to increase the public’s access to legislative information. The real takeaway from each online meeting is the degree to which these entities collaborate on projects. The Library of Congress… Continue Reading

Climate Change and U.S. Financial Regulators: Overview and Recent Actions

CRS Insight – Climate Change and U.S. Financial Regulators: Overview and Recent Actions, Updated August 26, 2021: “Under the Biden Administration,financial regulators have announced a range of new measures to address financial risks associated with climate change. The Department of the Treasury, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), and the Federal Reserve have each announced… Continue Reading

Congress.gov August 2021 New, Tip, and Top

In Custodia Legis: “At the end of July, Andrew shared the enhancements from the last Congress.gov release, which included adding Key Word In Context (KWIC) search results for the Bound Congressional Record and new customization options for bill alerts. With this month’s release, a link to the treaty errata tab from the overview section on… Continue Reading

Senators unveil full text of bipartisan infrastructure bill

CBS: “Senators on Sunday unveiled the legislative text of the $1 trillion bipartisan infrastructure bill during a rare weekend session as lawmakers rush to begin the amendment process ahead of an expected vote on final passage by the end of the week. The bipartisan group of senators that negotiated the deal released the legislative language… Continue Reading

Tracking Federal Awards: USAspending.gov and Other Data Sources

Tracking Federal Awards: USAspending.gov and Other Data Sources Updated July 30, 2021 – “USAspending.gov, available at https://www.USAspending.gov, is a government source for data on federal awards by state, congressional district (CD), county, city, and zip code. The awards data in USAspending.gov are provided byfederal agencies and represent contracts, grants, loans, and other forms of financial assistance.… Continue Reading

LC Upcoming US Law Webinars – August 2021

In Custodia Legis: [In August 2021], the Law Library of Congress will present a webinar on federal statutes. Attendees will have the opportunity to learn about the legislative process and how to trace federal statutes from their publication in the U.S. Code to their origins as bills. Participants will also learn about the difference between… Continue Reading

New Browse, Updated Bill Alerts, and More: Congress.gov New, Tip, and Top for July 2021

In Custodia Legis: “Earlier this month, Margaret shared the exciting news that we added bills and resolutions from 1799-1873 to Congress.gov. There was also a press release to highlight this new feature of content from Century of Lawmaking. We previously added Key Word in Context (KWIC) to Legislative Text on the Quick Search Form. With… Continue Reading

Senate Bill Aims to Create National Database of Restrictive Property Covenants

WSJ (paywall – see alternative full text): “A new bill backed by a slate of Senate Democrats would allocate competitive grants to colleges and universities to analyze, digitize and map historic housing discrimination records, creating the first national database of its kind. The focus of the effort is to research covenants attached to housing deeds,… Continue Reading

LSC Eviction Laws Database

Legal Services Corporation – “An online tool that allows users to explore the entire legal process of eviction – from pre-filing to post-judgment – in communities across the country. As directed by Congress, a key component of Legal Services Corporation’s (LSC) Effect of State & Local Laws on Evictions Study is to better understand the… Continue Reading

House Bill Would Create Long-Awaited Software and Data Roles at Federal Agencies

NextGov: “The federal government would finally be able to hire specifically for “software development,” “software engineering,” “data management,” and “knowledge management” positions under new legislation before the House. Over multiple administrations, the federal government has tried to get better at hiring and retaining tech-savvy employees but continues to meet challenges, including the lack of specific… Continue Reading