Case Study: National Center for State Courts


Kay Farley and her team of four staff members have to stay on top of a wide range of legislation, since a large slice of federal policy directly impacts state court operations and the administration of justice.

The possibility of missing something important used to keep them up at night.

“I think people are sometimes surprised by the number of issues we track on behalf of the courts,” says Farley. “There’s a whole host of issues that could affect the way state courts do their business, so we need to identify those and help policy leaders understand what the impact is.” CQ’s in-depth keywords and alerts system makes her job easier.

“We all have our keywords for what we’re tracking. Based on those we get an alert when something happens on a topic. We’ll set up an alert for a particular bill, for example, and monitor its progress and then do analysis on whether or not it looks like it’s something that’s going to move, or just get introduced,” says Farley.

A lot of issues Farley’s team tracks come up in committees. These can range from the Judiciary Committee, House Ways and Means Committee, Senate Finance Committee, Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions, and the Appropriations Committee.

“But sometimes issues can pop up in other unexpected places,” says Farley.

“It could be detrimental in that [state courts] have difficulty implementing a policy that’s come down that they didn’t anticipate or have any involvement in. Or there could be a requirement coming down from Congress in some federal funds, but the courts aren’t included in the funding, even if they have a responsibility for implementing,” says Farley.

Luckily, she’s able to stay on top of even the unexpected issues. “I honestly don’t know how I would do my job without those alerts,” she says.

While CQ’s legislative tracking tools are among the best, Farley, like most subscribers, is charged with doing more than just tracking legislation.

“It’s not only tracking, but also identifying whether or not the conferences want to take a policy position, and if they do, letting folks know what those positions are,” says Farley. Along with CQ’s tracking services, she and her colleagues also utilize CQ Bill Text, Committee Reports and Testimony and Bill Analysis.

“The analysis that comes out on bill tracker, and the projections, and just understanding the process is very valuable for us. We just don’t have that in-depth knowledge ourselves, so having that extra piece available to us is very valuable,” she says.

For Farley and thousands of our other subscribers, CQ is more than a legislative tracking tool. It equips them to make a bigger impact within their organizations, and it provides peace of mind. If you’re wondering how you can accomplish more at work and worry less, log into CQ and see what’s new. We think you’ll like what you find.

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