Course Syllabus
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How To Write a Public Comment
Tasks for Writing a Public Comment
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Influencing Administrations:
How to Write a Public Comment

Below, the goal, objective, scope, and product for a position paper are specified along with a suggested strategy for writing a public comment.


Knowledge of administrative procedures for implementing law, including the public’s role in implementation

Communication objective

To influence the administration of a law by contributing information relevant to standard-setting, rule-making, or permitting


A formal written comment


Limited to the specific proposed administrative action.


Base comments on your authority to respond, whether based on personal experience, organizational advocacy, vocational or professional background, or specialized knowledge.

While expert commentary is always appropriate, you need not be an expert in order to comment. Administrators want and need to hear from anyone who can make a useful comment. There is no template for public comments, unlike legal briefs. A simple letter can have an impact. If friends or a community organization shares your views, you might want to present a collective comment. You might sign for the group, or all individuals involved might sign, or the organization’s officers might sign.

Learn about the specific tasks involved in writing public comments.


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Example 1

Professionals in the field of automotive safety submit a proposed change in motor vehicle safety standards during the rule-making process. Read more...

Example 2

The Penns Valley Conservation Association responds to a call for public input on a permitting process. Read more...

Example 3

The Aaronsburg Civic Club requests a public meeting.