Although it’s true that basically no media outlets bother to mention bill numbers when writing about legislation, I really have to give credit to the always-vital Capital News Service, run by Jeff South at the VCU School of Mass Communication. Every one of their articles about legislation provide bill numbers for every single bill that they refer to, as well as other bills on the same topic. It’s no coincidence that these stories are written by students. Because their stories are distributed directly to media outlets, and not published on their website, so I can’t link directly to an example, but you can download a Word file containing all of their stories from the past week.
You might think that you’ve never heard of CNS, but you have. Remember when Del. Bob Marshall claimed that women who have abortions end up having handicapped kids, due to God’s wrath? That was a CNS scoop—every other media outlet at that press conference overlooked that comment.