Please join us on GODORT Blog!

April 4, 2009 by

This blog was started to promote the State Agency Databases Across the Fifty States project. This is a project of the State and Local Documents Task Force of the American Library Association Government Documents Roundtable (ALA GODORT).

ALA GODORT has launched its own blog at Now that ALA GODORT has its own blog, Rebecca Blakeley and I are going to posting the project’s state agency database highlights there. We hope this will raise the profile of the highlights and draw more documents librarians as contributors to this project.

We hope you’ll be interested in all of the ALA GODORT postings, but if you only want to see posting about state agency databases, please visit

This blog will no longer be updated, but will be left as an archive of database highlights and as a partial subject index to state agency databases.

Thank you for your interest in state government information.


SC: Safe Eats

March 23, 2009 by

Does your favorite South Carolina restaurant keep clean? How about the sanitation at your child’s school? Or the prison that cousin Jim has been locked up in? With today’s State Agency Database Highlight, you can check how a food server stacks up against state health standards:

Restaurant Inspection Scores Search by restaurant name or street name in a city to find current regular (unannounced) or followup inspection scores.

Results include date of latest inspection.

The South Carolina page of State Agency Databases Across the Fifty States is maintained by Elaine Sandberg.

PA: Rural Development

March 16, 2009 by

If you live in rural Pennsylvania, you can find business and other development assistance with today’s State Agency Database Highlight:OK

Rural Access Guide – Find agencies and assistance with rural projects. From the website, “The Guide was designed to help local government officials, nonprofit organizations, community groups and individuals find the assistance they need for projects and programs. Information in the database was originally compiled in 1999/2000 and continues to be updated regularly. Information in the guide is meant to be used as a basic outline of available programs.”

Records contain contact information, websites when available and a basic description of the assistance program offered.

The Pennsylvania page of State Agency Databases Accross the Fifty States is maintained by Suzanne Leers.

OR: Verify Lender License

March 9, 2009 by

If you live in Oregon, today’s State Agency Database Highlight will help you determined whether your mortgage lender is actually licensed to do business:

  • Mortgage Lenders – A database of licensed mortgage lenders, searchable by name or location. Also allows downloading of the data file.

Here is a sample record:

Main Office: License No: ML-3080
SALEM, OR 97302
County: MARION
Phone: (503) 881-0959
Start Date: 12/02/2003
Expire Date: 12/04/2010

The Oregon page of State Agency Databases Across the Fifty States is maintained by Tom Stave and Jane Kirkland.

OH: Local Gov’t Audits

March 2, 2009 by

If you live in Ohio and wonder if your school, country or other local government agency is in top fiscal or operative shape, check out today’s State Agency Database Highlight:

Audit Search – Conveniently review the financial information of units of state and local government such as schools, cities, counties, etc., to see how Ohioans’ tax dollars are being spent. Types of audits and reports included are: Financial – Annual or biennial reviews of the financial activity, legal compliance and fiscal controls of a government. Issued for the nearly 5,000 units of state and local government. Special – Reviews of questioned transactions to determine if fraud, waste or abuse has occurred. Performance – Reviews assessing the economy, efficiency and effectiveness of government business operations or programs. Provider – Reviews of Medicaid provider services to determine compliance with program regulations. Fiscal Analysis – Financial forecasts, fiscal watch/emergency review.

The Ohio page of State Agency Databases Across the Fifty States is maintained by Audrey Hall.

ND: Business Licenses

February 23, 2009 by

Live in North Dakota and want to know if your local dry cleaners has a current business license? Check out today’s State Agency Database Highlight:

Business Record Search – From the website, “This database reflects current information on record with the Secretary of State. It includes database records of all corporations, limited liability companies, limited partnerships, limited liability partnerships, limited liability limited partnerships, partnership fictitious names, trade names, trademarks, and real estate investment trusts. The database includes all active records and those records inactivated within the past twelve months and may be useful to assess Name Availability for new business registrations to be filed with the Secretary of State.”

The North Dakota page of State Agency Databases Across the Fifty States is maintained by Kathryn Thomas.

NM: Film Locations

February 16, 2009 by

Let’s suppose you’re a filmmaker with a yen to film at a genuine New Mexico library. How would you scout out a location? Drive around the state? Call every library in New Mexican phone books? It’d probably be easier to use today’s State Agency Database Highlight:

Search Film Locations – Find filming locations in New Mexico. Database can be searched by category, sub category, location name, region, county or town. Result list shows location photos. Records have maps plus additional photos and link to request additional information about the location.

The New Mexico page of State Agency Databases Across the Fifty States is maintained by Timothy Skeers.

NJ: Projects for Pedestrians & Bicyclists

February 9, 2009 by

Is non-motor friendly the first phrase you think of when you think of New Jersey? How about bicycle and pedestrian projects? After you look at today’s State Agency Database Highlight, you may think again:

  • New Jersey Bicycle/Pedestrian Project Database – Activated in 2005 to provide information to assist in planning, designing, building and maintaining facilities for bicyclists and pedestrians, the database contains information submitted by individuals and agencies on project type, location, cost and funding. The database is not all-inclusive.

The NJ Bicycle/Pedestrian Project Database was added to the New Jersey page of State Agency Databases Across the Fifty States by Stephanie Bartz. The page as a whole does not yet have a volunteer to keep it up to date. Will you take up the challenge? If so, please e-mail Daniel Cornwall at dnlcornwall *AT* alaska *Dot* net.

AK: Plans Library

February 2, 2009 by

Government at all levels involves a lot of planning. In the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, unadvertised municipal plans were kept in locked basements that were only open to the public a few hours a month. Fortunately in the age of the internet, plans are easier to find. Just look at Today’s State Agency Database Highlight:

  • Plans Library– From the website, “The Library contains a wide assortment of plans submitted to the Division of Community & Regional Affairs (DCRA) by communities, agencies and contractors. The database contains Community Plans, Comprehensive Plans, Economic Development Plans, and Strategic Plans among many more general and project related plans (such as Water Waste Plans, Relocation Plans etc).”

Aside from being worthwhile documents in themselves (check out a few if you don’t believe me), plans are a valuable source of local history. Communities that have never had their local history set down in book form often have several pages worth of local history in plans. There are also often descriptions of current local conditions and lists of leading people and organizations in the community. Plans are useful to the historian and sociologist as well as to the community planner. Go check them out.

The Alaska page of State Agency Databases Across the Fifty States is maintained by Sheri Somerville.

NH:Live Free and Fish

January 26, 2009 by

If you live in New Hampshire or have just made a New Year’s Resolution to do more fishing, you might be interested in today’s State Agency Database Highlight:

The New Hampshire page of State Agency Databases Across the Fifty States is maintained by Linda Johnson, Betsy Holmes and Linda Jayes.