Daily Rules, Proposed Rules, and Notices of the Federal Government
The purpose of this final rule is to provide a new policy for the Internet GOV Domain that will be included in the FMR. The final rule is written in a plain language question and answer format. This style uses an active voice, shorter sentences, and pronouns. Unless otherwise indicated in the text, the pronoun “we” refers to the General Services Administration (GSA). A question and its answer combine to establish a rule. You must follow the language contained in both the question and its answer.
This final rule establishes FMR part 102-173, Internet GOV Domain, and provides policy for registration of domain names. A proposed rule was published in the
Jurisdiction of the Internet GOV (dot-gov) domain was delegated to GSA in 1997 by the Federal Networking Council with guidance in the form of Internet Engineering Task ForceInformational RFC 2146. Since then, the U.S. Government use of the Internet has evolved and is rapidly emerging as an electronic government without boundaries. Federal organizations are choosing dot-gov domain names to reflect the type of service being rendered and are collaborating to form portals that cross boundaries of agencies, departments, and other U.S. government entities. GSA reserves the right to make exceptions to the naming conventions described in this subpart on a case-by-case basis in unique and compelling cases.
In addition, there is increasing interest from non-Federal U.S. government entities, such as State and
This is a significant rule and was subject to Office of Management and Budget review under section 6(b) of ExecutiveOrder 12866, Regulatory Planning and Review, dated September 30, 1993.
We certify that the amendments will not have a significant economic impact on a substantial number of small entities, because the registration and renewal fees, and paperwork collection burden will be small.
The Paperwork Reduction Act does not apply because this final rule does not contain any information collection requirements that require the approval of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) under 44 U.S.C. 3501,
This final rule is not a major rule under 5 U.S.C. 804.
This final rule does not significantly or uniquely affect small governments or tribal governments. It does not result in expenditures by State, local, or tribal governments, or to the private sector, of $100 million or more in any one year.
This final rule does not have Federalism implications.
There are no substantial direct effects on the States, on the relationship between the national government and the States, or on the distribution of power and responsibilities among the various levels of government.
Archives and records, Computer technology, Federal information processing resources activities, Government procurement, Property management, Records management, Telecommunications.
40 U.S.C. 486(c).
Internet GOV Domain refers to the Internet top-level domain “dot-gov” operated by the General Services Administration for the registration of U.S. government-related domain names. In general, these names reflect the organization names in the Federal Government and non-Federal government entities in the United States. These names are now being used to promote government services and increase the ease of finding these services.
Jurisdiction of the Internet GOV (dot-gov) domain was delegated to the General Services Administration in 1997 by the Federal Networking Council with guidance in the form of Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) Informational RFC 2146, which can be obtained on the Internet at:
This part addresses the registration of second-level domain names used in the Internet GOV Domain. This registration process assures that the assigned domain names are unique worldwide.
This part applies to Federal, State, and local governments, and Native Sovereign Nations. You do not need to register domain names with the General ServicesAdministration if you will be using some other top-level domain registration, such as dot-us, dot-org, or dot-net.
The following definitions apply to this part:
Registration in the dot-gov domain is available to official governmental organizations in the United States including Federal, State, and local governments, and NativeSovereign Nations.
Domain names must be authorized by the Chief Information Officer (CIO) of the requesting or sponsoring governmental organization. For Federal departments and agencies, the General Services Administration (GSA) will accept authorization from the CIO of the department or agency. For independent Federal government agencies, boards, and commissions, GSA will accept authorization from the highest-ranking Information Technology Official. ForState and local governments, GSA will accept authorization from appropriate State or local officials,
For Native Sovereign Nations, GSA will only accept authorization from the Bureau of Indian Affairs, Department of the Interior. In most cases, GSA will not make determinations on the appropriateness of the selected domain names, but reserves the right to not assign domain names on a case-by-case basis. Non-Federal government domain names must follow the naming conventions described in §§ 102-173.50 through 102-173.65. For other government entities, CIO's may delegate this authority by notification to GSA.
Your Chief Information Officer (CIO) may vary according to the branch of government. For the Federal Government, the General Services Administration (GSA) recognizes the cabinet level CIOs listed at
The General Services Administration (GSA) reserves the right to charge for domain names in order to recover cost of operations. For current registration charges, please visit the GSA Web site at
(a) To register any second-level domain within dot-gov, State government entities must register the full State name or clearly indicate the State postal code within the name. Examples of acceptable names include virginia.gov, tennesseeanytime.gov, wa.gov, nmparks.gov, mysc.gov, emaryland.gov, and ne-taxes.gov. However—
(1) Use of the State postal code should not be embedded within a single word in a way that obscures the postal code. For example, Indiana (IN) should not register for win.gov, or independence.gov; and
(2) Where potential conflicts arise between postal codes and existing domain names, States are encouraged to register URL's that contain the full State name.
(b) There is no limit to the number of domain names for which a State may register.
(c) States are encouraged to make second-level domains available for third-level registration by local governments and State Government departments and programs. For example, the State of North Carolina could register NC.GOV as a second-level domain and develop a system of registration for their local governments. The State would be free to develop policy on how the local government should be registered under NC.GOV. One possibility might be to spell out the city, thus Raleigh.NC.gov could be a resulting domain name.
(a) To register any second-level domain within dot-gov, City (town) governments must register the domain name with the city (town) name or abbreviation, and clear reference to the State in which the city (town) is located. However—
(1) Use of the State postal code should not be embedded within a single word in a way that obscures the postal code; and
(2) Inclusion of the word city or town within the domain name is optional and may be used at the discretion of the local government.
(b)(1) The preferred format for city governments is to denote the State postal code after the city name, optionally separated by a dash. Examples of preferred domain names include—
(iv) Townofdumfries-va.gov; and
(2) GSA reserves the right to make exceptions to the naming conventions described in this subpart on a case-by-case basis in unique and compelling cases.
(c) If third-level domain naming is used, GSA reserves the right to offer exceptions to the third-level domain naming conventions described in this section on a case-by-case basis in unique and compelling cases.
(a) To register any second-level domain within dot-gov, County or Parish governments must register the County's or Parish's name or abbreviation, the word “county” or “parish” (because many counties have the same name as cities within the same State), and a reference to the State in which the county or parish is located. However, the use of the State postal code should not be embedded within a single word in a way that obscures the postal code.
(b) The preferred format for county or parish governments is to denote the State postal code after the county or parish, optionally separated by a dash. Examples of preferred domain names include—
(2) Pwc-county-va.gov; and
(c) If third-level domain naming is available from the State government, counties or parishes are encouraged to register for a domain name under a State's registered second-level (
To register any second-level domain in dot-gov, Native Sovereign Nations (NSN) may register any second-level
Registration is an online process at the General Services Administration's Web site at
The process can be completed within 48 hours if all information received is complete and accurate. Most requests take up to thirty (30) days because the registrar is waiting for Chief Information Officer (CIO) approval.
A registration confirmation notice is sent within one business day after you register your domain name, informing you that your registration information was received. If all of your information is accurate and complete, a second notice will be sent to you within one business day, informing you that all of your information is in order. If you are ineligible, or if the information provided is incorrect or incomplete, your registration will be rejected and a notice will be sent to you stating the reason for rejection. Registration requests will be activated within two business days after receiving valid authorization from the appropriate Chief Information Officer (CIO). Once your domain name has been activated, a notice will be sent to you.
Registrations will be held in reserve status for sixty (60) days pending Chief Information Officer (CIO) authorization from your sponsoring organization.
Yes, canonical names registration request must provide access coverage for the areas conveyed by the name. So the URL recreation.gov would not be approved for the state of Maryland, but the URL recreationMD.gov would be approved if it provides statewide coverage. The logic of the names adds value to the dot gov domain. GSA reserves the right deny use of canonical names that do not provide appropriate coverage and to arbitrate these issues.
The General Services Administration approves domain names for a specific term of time, generally two years unless otherwise stated, and under conditions of use. General conditions of registration and are posted at the registration Web site at