ALISON as League Advocacy Tool
A quick and dirty overview
ALISON, the Alabama Legislative Information System Online, allows you to identify
bills important to your League's positions and advocacy priorities. The
information about bills such as sponsors, history, fiscal notes,
amendments and substitutions, and status. Search bills by number,
keyword or content. Track their progress and use your knowledge to focus and time your advocacy effort. Here's how.
1. Using web browser, go to the ALISON website. In case you want to print in a publication, this is that ALISON web address:
2. Set the legislative session for which you want to search. If the Legislature is currently in session, ALISON should open with the current session set by default. BUT if the Legislature is not in session, click on the left-most item in the menu bar at the top of the ALISON window. It will say something like "First Special Session 2009" or "Regular Session 2010". You will be given the option to search the proceedings of any legislative session back to the Regular Session of 2001!
3. Find bills of interest
Search for bills by keyword or content: In the left column, click on Bills -> Search -> Keyword or click on Bills -> Search -> Content. Type in your search words, e.g. searchword1 AND searchword2 AND …
-- OR --
Search for bills by sponsor: Click on Bills -> By Sponsor to search by sponsor.
4. Make a list of the bills of interest for easy reference. Or explore the "Personal Instrument List" feature, linked in the left menu column of ALISON, to save bill numbers for later reference.
5. Find out more about a bill and it's status in the legislative process. In ALISON click on Bills -> Status in the left column. Type in the bill number (e.g. HB110) in the "Bill Number" box and click "Get Status". In the next window, highlight the bill’s button by clicking on it. Then click on History, Sponsors, Fiscal Notes, Amds/Subs and/or View for more information.
Now your League's Board or Advocacy Team can decide what advocacy steps to take!
6. Get contact information for legislators who need your advocacy attention. Go to the AL Legislature website at
to search do this search.
7. Advocacy in committee is very important. If your bill is in committee, click on House or Senate at on the legislative web site (address above), then click on “Standing Committees” for a list of committees and the legislators on each committee. Concentrate on the leadership and known opponents to your position. Keep close track of the bill's committee meeting schedule and agenda to see when your bill might be coming up for consideration. This will help your League to make a timely advocacy effort. To see committee schedules and agendae, click on "Committee Meetings" in the left menu column of ALISON.
8. If/when the bill has passed out of committee, check the Special Order Calendar to see when your bill might be considered by the whole body. To see this, click "Special Order Calendar" in the left menu column of ALISON.
9. If your bill makes it through one legislative body, congratulations! Repeat your efforts in the second house.
Important! Notify the LWVAL Advocacy Team (Anne Permaloff, Chair, firstname.lastname@example.org
or 334-270-0539) when you are advocating for/against a bill in the legislature even if it is a local bill. Good communication between Leagues helps to assure understanding and a good coordination of effort for all League advocacy efforts at the State House!