OMB stops issuing .gov URLs

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The federal government has stopped issuing .gov URLs in an effort to cut back on confusing, duplicate or unnecessary websites, including several President Barack Obama poked fun at in a video message that accompanied the launch of the Campaign to Cut Waste. Any request for a .gov URL will now require a written waiver from Federal CIO Vivek Kundra, writes Macon Phillips, the White House new media director, in a June 13 blog post on WhiteHouse.gov.

OMB is also requiring every agency to report on the URLs they maintain and seek public feedback on each registered domain, said Phillips. A task force is also being formed to develop a government-wide policy for websites, he added.

"Today, there are nearly 2,000 top-level federal .gov domains," explained Phillips. "Under many of these domains are smaller sub-sites and microsites resulting in an estimated 24,000 websites of varying purpose, design, navigation, usability and accessibility."

The Campaign to Cut Waste was announced June 13 and will be led by Vice President Joe Biden. It aims to get "rid of the pointless waste and stupid spending that doesn't benefit anybody," according to Obama.

An executive order also created an 11-member Government Accountability and Transparency Board that will help agencies identify areas where waste can be cut and performance can improve. The board will be chaired by former Interior Department Inspector General and Recovery Board Chair Earl Devaney, said Biden during the June 13 kickoff at the Eisenhower Executive Office Building in Washington, D.C.

For more:
- see the blog post
- see a video of the announcement
- view the executive order

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