NEW WEBSITE LAUNCHED IN ANTICIPATION OF 106TH GENERAL ASSEMBLY

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact: Darlene Schlicher

January 10, 2009

Phone:  (615) 741-6336

or Kara Watkins

Phone: (615) 741-1975

SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE
JAMES O. “JIMMY” NAIFEH
HOUSE DISTRICT 71

LIEUTENANT GOVERNOR
RON RAMSEY
SENATE DISTRICT 2

The Tennessee General Assembly
For Immediate Release: January 8, 2009

NEW WEBSITE LAUNCHED IN ANTICIPATION
OF 106TH GENERAL ASSEMBLY
E-mail addresses upgraded with new domain name for easier communication

Nashville, TN—On Thursday House Speaker Jimmy Naifeh (D-Covington) and Lieutenant Governor Ron Ramsey (R-Blountville) announced the launch of the newly upgraded website for the Tennessee General Assembly.

“In
this new era of online information, we as legislators must continue to
give Tennesseans the ability to see their government at work,” said
Speaker Naifeh. “This new website will give people improved access and
a better view of what we do here in Nashville.”

Beginning
in the summer of 2008, both chambers of the Tennessee General Assembly,
along with the help of Tennessee Legislative Information Services
Department, began studying ways to improve communication with
constituents via the Internet. A survey was commissioned asking website
users what they wanted from the General Assembly website. Hundred of
individual ideas were submitted and many were used in the final version.

“These
changes continue the evolution of making our government more open and
transparent,” said Governor Ramsey. “This website will give the people
of Tennessee a better opportunity to know their legislators, follow
important bills and let them be a part of the process.”
Upgrades to the new site include:

  • “My Bills” –
    Individualized list of bills for tracking for the public. User that
    create a log-in can list up to 30 individual bills and receive RSS
    updates on the status of their bills as they progress through the
    Legislature.
  • Browse Legislation by Subject – Visitors who don’t know a bill number can now search for legislator based on the subject, rather than just a keyword.
  • Enhanced Voting History – Constituents will now be able to see more easily how an elected official voted on a bill.
  • Enhanced Calendar & Schedule
    Changes to committee meetings can happen frequently during session, and
    now those changes will be reflected quickly thanks to enhanced calendar
    and scheduling controls.
  • “Find Your Legislator”
    – The new search program will allow a citizen to enter his or her
    address and find out who represents them in both the House and the
    Senate.
  • Standardized Member Pages – Each member page is redesigned and will provide a link to a Senator’s personal web page.
  • New District Maps – Included in every House and Senate member’s page is a highly-detailed, street-level map

The
new website was created by NICUSA-TN. NICUSA-TN designs, manages, and
markets eGovernment services and Web sites on behalf of state and local
governments. They partner with government leaders and establish local
offices to provide customized solutions for each government we serve.

“NICUSA-TN
and the state of Tennessee have had shared a long history of working
together, and it has been an honor being able to take the General
Assembly’s website into the 21st Century,” said Kelly Berg, NICUSA-TN
Director of User Experience.

The website is slated to go
online officially on Friday, January 9, 2009 and the final cost of the
project is expected to be just over $52,000.

In addition
to the new website, all legislative officials and staff will now have a
new e-mail address domain. The new domain, capitol.tn.gov, replaces the much longer legislature.state.tn.us. Both domains will continue to be active for a time during the transition.

For
more information regarding the TGA website changes or other technical
questions, please contact Director Steve Kriegish, Office of
Information Services, at (615) 741-1552 or e-mail at [email protected].

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