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Finding Legislation and Regulations: Home

This short guide will provide guidance on researching


Code of Federal Regulations - The subject compilations of current final regulations. 

Committee Print - Documentation used by any Congressional committee in it consideration and deliberation of a bill.  

Conference Report - A report drafted by committees of both the House and Senate.

Emergency regulation - A regulation that bypasses the proposal process requiring an agency to act expediently due to a crisis or to address an immediate need.  Typically this regulation is to be short-term, but may still be in effect for a longer period than intended or expected.  

Engrossed bill - A bill that has passed one house of the legislature and then sent to the other house for consideration. 

Enrolled bill - A bill that has passed both houses of a legislature and sent to the executive either for passage or veto.

Federal Register - The government publication that contains proposed regulations, final regulations, interim regulations, emergency regulations, notices and any other miscellaneous information the government desires to impart to the public. The Federal Register is published on a daily basis with exception of weekends and Federal holidays. 

Final regulation - A regulation in its final form and is the rule to be enforced by the agency. 

House Report - a report drafted by the House committee charged with considering the bill that usually explains its purpose.

Interim regulation - A regulation that functions as a stop gap or bridge until a more indefinite regulation can be promulgated.  This regulation  too can sometimes last for a more indefinite period.

Preamble - Precedes the final regulation published in the Federal Register providing a summary of the regulation, explanations of its subsections and a summary of responses to concerns expressed by affected parties and the public at large. It provides a good resource to explain why the regulation exists. 

Promulgate - To create a regulation by a Federal or State agency to enforce legislation.

Proposed regulation - A regulation for the purpose of an agency to receive input from affected parties and the public at large preceding implementation of a final rule.  

Private Law - A law enacted by a legislative body that affects a specific individual or persons. 

Public Law - a law enacted by a legislative body that affects the public at large.

Senate Report - the same as a house report except done by the Senate.  


Federal websites

Virginia Resources

Misc. Resources