White House starts transparency Web site

Public to assist with creating open government directive

 The White House today started a new Web site through which the public can take part in the development of a plan for making government more open.

The Open Government Initiative Web site  includes a link for the public to submit ideas, a blog and an innovations gallery that features other federal transparency projects.

The site is intended to fulfill the goals of President Barack Obama’s Jan. 21 memorandum on transparency and open government. According to that order, the federal chief technology officer is to develop recommends for an open government directive.

The directive will instruct executive departments and agencies on what actions are needed to implement the principles in Obama's memo.

The public is invited to participate by submitting ideas on the Web site. A visitor to the site who clicks on the “Participate” link will be forwarded to a brainstorming Web site that publicly lists and offers popularity ratings for ideas.

A discussion phase for the directive begins on June 3, and the directive recommendations will be drafted starting June 15, according to the open government site.

Along with launching the Web site, the White House’s Office of Science and Technology policy published a Federal Register notice today calling for public comment on transparency initiatives. Comments may be received through the Web site, e-mail messages or mail by June 19, the notice states.

About the Author

Alice Lipowicz is a staff writer covering government 2.0, homeland security and other IT policies for Federal Computer Week.

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