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Federal Register: Home

A short guide on how to locate and use the Federal Register (FR).

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The UCSB Library collects official government publications from the United States, the State of California, and Santa Barbara City and County.  If you would like to learn more about these collections, please take a look at some of our other Library Guides!

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The Federal Register

Is this is your first time using the Federal Register?

Check out this tutorial from the National Archives.

What is the Federal Register?

Published by the Office of the Federal Register, National Archives and Records Administration (NARA), the Federal Register is the official daily publication for rules, proposed rules, and notices of Federal agencies and organizations, as well as executive orders and other presidential documents.

Learn more about the history of the Federal Register!

Who uses the Federal Register?

Reading the Federal Register is vital:

  • If you need to know about the day-to-day operations of the Federal Government
  • If your business is regulated by a Federal agency
  • If you are an attorney practicing before a regulatory agency
  • If your organization attends public hearings or meetings or applies for grants
  • If you are concerned with Government actions that affect the environment, health care, financial services, exports, education, or other major public policy issues

The Federal Register also informs citizens of their rights and obligations and provides access to a wide range of Federal benefits and opportunities for funding.

Where can I find the Federal Register at UCSB?

UCSB Library has microfilm holdings for old issues of the Federal Register, and provides access to more recent issues (1994+) through the Government Publishing Office (GPO)'s digital repository FDsys. Recent editions are easily browseable at Historical editions are available through the Law Library of Congress

See more about our holdings information!

How can I find information in the Federal Register?

If you already have a citation number, you can consult our holdings to see if you will need to look at a print or electronic version of the Federal Register. If you need an issue from 1994 to the present, you can find your citation online using FDsys. If you need an issue from 1936–2001, then you can use our microfilm copies located in the Government Information collection. 

If you do not have a citation, you may need to consult an annual index. We have Annual Indexes for the years 1955–2009 available in the Government Information reference collection to use. There are also online indexes from 1998+ available on the NARA website.

Learn more about using the Indexes!

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