Feds to Launch Government Resource Portal

President Clinton has announced plans to create a Web site that will centralise in one user-friendly site all the resources the U.S. government currently maintains online.

The site, firstgov.gov, which Clinton said will be running within 90 days, will be a central clearinghouse for data and links to other government resources.

The site will be able to search a half-billion federal Web documents and handle at least 100 million searches a day, the White House said.

The site will also be designed to make it easier for citizens to ask for government services or keep up with paperwork. It will allow people to register for grants online, for example, and will move other paperwork-intensive processes to the Web.

"Moving this enormous volume of business online will save a great deal of money and time for our taxpayers. It will also expand opportunities for community groups, small businesses and citizens who never before have had a chance to show what they can do," Clinton said in the Webcast.

The president also offered $50,000 to the person who comes up with the most innovative idea for advancing the electronic government.

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