Partners Write in Support of Free Access to Material Incorporated into Law by Reference

OpenTheGovernment.org joined the Association of Research Libraries (ARL) and the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) in sending a letter to Cass Sunstein, the Administrator of Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA) at the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), in support of comments filed by Public.Resources.Org arguing that any material incorporated into an agency's regulations should be made freely available, with no purported copyright restrictions and downloadable on a government agency’s website. Currently, copyrighted material can be "incorporated by reference" into an agency's regulations, meaning the agency refers to the copyrighted standards or criteria, but does not link to them. Once material is incorporated by reference, people must pay often exorbitant fees to access what is essentially the law of the land. Fundamental principles of American democracy dictate that citizens must have free access to the laws which govern them.

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