EPA increases transparency of proposed regulations

April 20, 2010 | General RCAP News

WASHINGTON (EPA)–The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is launching a new website giving the public additional opportunities to participate in the agency’s rulemaking process, part of President Barack Obama’s desire to provide a more transparent and open government.   The Rulemaking Gateway serves as a portal to EPA’s priority rules, providing citizens with earlier and more concise information about agency regulations. It also allows users to search for EPA rules that relate to specific interests, including impacts on small business; children’s health; environmental justice; and state, local and tribal government.   Rulemaking Gateway provides information as soon as work begins and provides updates on a monthly basis as new information becomes available. Time-sensitive information, such as notice of public meetings, is updated on a daily basis.    Rulemaking Gateway complements Regulations.gov, the federal government’s main portal for tracking rules from all federal agencies, by providing brief overviews of specific EPA rules and additional ways to search rules based on the phases they are in (e.g., pre-proposal, proposal), the topics they relate to (e.g., air, water), and the impacts they might have (e.g., impacts on small businesses or environmental justice). The new website offers a distilled “snapshot” of a rule, with just enough information for a citizen to determine his or her interest in the rule. The individual then can use Rulemaking Gateway links to Regulations.gov and to other EPA sources where comprehensive information is available.   In addition, EPA has established a Rulemaking Gateway discussion forum to allow the public to suggest enhancements to the site. The forum will be open through July 16, 2010, after which EPA plans to make enhancements based on ideas received.    More information on Rulemaking Gateway and the discussion forum   More information on Regulations.gov website