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Office of Management and Budget
News Release


October 18, 2001

OMB Expands use of Internet in Regulatory Review Process

Washington, DC -- The Office of Management and Budget announced plans to make greater use of the Internet to increase transparency in its regulatory and paperwork review processes. OMB-Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs Administrator John D. Graham has directed a multi-year expansion in the amount and scope of information that OIRA discloses to the public through the Internet. The objective of the new approach, according to Graham, "is to increase public understanding of OMB's regulatory review responsibilities, thereby allowing public scrutiny, criticism and praise of what we do. If OMB is to be a credible advocate of E-government, we must practice E-government ourselves."


In the short run (by November 1, 2001), OMB's new policy will simply provide the public greater access to information on regulatory review through OMB's current web site and through the Government's portal at (rather than rely solely on a public docket room in Washington, DC). Information to be provided includes: lists of regulations under review updated daily, monthly statistical summaries on reviews undertaken by agency and economic significance of the rule, copies of review-related letters from OMB-OIRA to agencies (including "prompt" letters, "return" letters, and "post-clearance" letters), information on meetings with outside parties that are required to be disclosed under Executive Order 12866, a list of written correspondence received from outside parties on rules under review, and copies of important policy communications such as the OIRA Administrator's recent memorandum to the President's Management Council on "principles and procedures" regarding regulatory review.


The long-term goal is to integrate regulation and paperwork reviews with OMB's E-government policies. Specifically, funds have been committed to the development of a new computerized tracking system to manage the reviews of both regulations and information collection requests (paperwork burdens). The system will replace an outmoded 20-year old tracking system with electronic capabilities for submission of public comments and dissemination of OIRA documents. The system, through full query capability, will allow a citizen to search for and view information about "transactions" under review and to review records as they are made public in response to OIRA's public disclosure obligations. When fully operational, the system will also integrate electronically the semi-annual regulatory agendas prepared by agencies in collaboration with the General Services Administration and the Administration's E-government initiative related to online rulemaking.



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