Gov. Gary Locke Launches Web Site to Make Washington State Government Even More Accessible to Businesses and Citizens

Gov. Gary Locke today announced the launch of a
new Web site that will make it easier for businesses and citizens to access
state government regulations, permitting requirements and rule-making

The Web site, , is a service of the
Office of Regulatory Assistance (ORA), which was created out of legislation
passed last year as part of the effort to make Washington even more business
friendly. The legislation is a result of a recommendation from the
Washington Competitiveness Council, which the governor convened in 2001 to
examine Washington’s ability to compete in the global economy of the 21st

"This new Web site is one more way we’re cutting government red tape," Locke
said. "It will provide citizens with access to information regarding our
state’s regulations, permit requirements and rules. It will make state
government even more transparent to our citizens."

ORA’s goal is to improve citizens’ and businesses’ interactions with
agencies and to increase their understanding of government purposes and

The Web site was developed to help businesses and citizens locate rule
information, and to help discover information on environmental permitting.
It provides links to cities, counties, economic development councils,
business license information, agency rulemaking information, and
environmental permitting.

Today’s launch is of Phase I of the Web site. Future improvements are
planned, including enhanced searching abilities for rules and laws, more
links and more content on permitting.

"We hope this Web site will serve as a helpful ‘front door’ to government
for businesses and citizens – to answer questions and give people the
information they need," said Claire Hesselholt, director of the ORA.

ORA was created as an expansion of the existing Office of Permit Assistance.
ORA’s duties include permit assistance and providing access to information
regarding state regulations as rulemaking processes. The function of the
office is to provide facilitation, coordination and education. ORA is part
of the Office of Financial Management and is administered by the Governor’s

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