New regulatory Web site debuts

The federal government has unveiled a new Web site, www.regulations.gov, that allows the public to find, review and submit opinions on federal documents that are open for comment and are published in the Federal Register, the Government’s legal newspaper. Visitors to the site can search by agency or by keyword to find Federal Register documents open for comment. The government’s 160 agencies have over 4,000 new rules issued each year to implement laws passed by Congress. The new Web site is designed to encourage comments from those impacted by the laws, giving the public a larger say in the regulatory process. The site is set up to handle as many as 2,000 users at a time, or 16,000 comments per hour. There are currently 436 rules open for comment on the Web site.