FirstGov launching site to help federal webmasters

The Firstgov.gov team at the General Services Administration on Sept. 29 will launch a portal with information to help federal webmasters improve their sites.

The Web Content Managers Online toolkit, at www.webcontent.gov, will feature laws and regulations, best practices, online discussion areas, frequently asked questions, and a calendar of events and deadlines, all related to the building and maintenance of federal sites.

'This will help agencies replicate the most successful sites. We want federal Web sites to be the most accessible and user-friendly in the world,' said Beverly Godwin, director of FirstGov, the federal government's main portal.

She spoke today at a luncheon in the diplomatic reception room at the State Department marking the fourth anniversary of Firstgov's launch, complete with tuxedoed waiters serving a birthday cake with candles.

In his remarks, GSA administrator Steven Perry said his goal for FirstGov was to reach 300 million visitors per year, up from the current 70 million, and to increase the page views from 200 million per year to 1 billion. At the birthday party, he read a letter from President Bush congratulating the creators of FirstGov.

'FirstGov can help people find the needle in the haystack of 24 million government Web pages,' said M. J. Jameson, GSA's associate administrator for citizen services and communications.

Sen. Larry Craig (R-Idaho) and Rep. Joe Wilson (R-S.C.) also praised FirstGov.

(Posted Sept. 15 and corrected Sept. 16)

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