Gov. Eric Greitens is ramping up his efforts to deregulate Missouri.
"We're taking aim at burdensome regulation," the governor said. "And we're listening to the people again."
Online comments are filtered into positive and negative experiences, so people can either tell the governor about specific regulations that benefited them or describe in detail how a rule hurt them or a business. Comments will be made public, though commenters can choose not to include personal information with their feedback.
The site follows an executive order from Greitens that expressed the need to repeal "ineffective, unnecessary, or unduly burdensome" regulations so as to "make Missouri more attractive to businesses and encourage job growth."
The order was one of Greitens' first actions in his brief career as a politician and instructed all state agencies to stop making rules except in emergency cases.
Agencies have until May 31, 2018, to do a full review of their regulations and prove that the regulations do not do more harm than good, and similar cost-benefit analyses will be required for any future rule, according to the order.
The governor's new website also includes a calendar of state agencies meetings, which spokesman Parker Briden said will allow interested parties to see "red-tape cutters" in action.
Some state agencies have already set up their own methods of gathering feedback from Missourians:
- The Department of Insurance, Financial Institutions and Professional Registration has created a page on its website showing a broad range of regulations dealing with insurance licenses, banks, sports, barbers and dentists, each with their own comment section
- The Department of Higher Education has a similar input system for comments on the state commissioner of high education, the University of Missouri, the University of Central Missouri, and the Fertilizer Control Board
- The Department of Labor and Industrial Relations is accepting comments on workers' compensation, the Human Rights Commission, various labor regulations and employment security
- The Department of Public Safety has asked for comments on its rules regarding the Missouri National Guard, fire safety, gambling, veterans and other topics
- The Department of Revenue is ready for feedback on rules dealing with taxes and motor vehicles
- The Department of Elementary and Secondary Education wants to hear about its regulations on K-12 learning, the Commission for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing, and the Assistive Technology Advisory Council
- The Department of Agriculture is accepting comments on animal health, farming and the state fair.
The governor's websites include point people for state departments and their contact information as well as a count of how many regulations each has.
According to the site, the Department of Natural Resources leads the way with 24,370 rules, while the Department of Corrections has a relatively scant 171 restrictions.