Business.gov — the government’s business portal/site/thing — announced today new state and local search capabilities. There’s an explanation page with several example searches at http://www.business.gov/about/search-engine.html .
Basically you can do a search and then add a zip code, county, or city name to your search and get “intelligent” results. You can mess with it if you want to (building permit springfield) but it seems to respond pretty well to zip codes and full location information (electrical code 90210).
State browsing is still available if you want to get larger sets of information, but you know what I’d really like to see? I’d like to see an on-the-fly list of Web sites that come up when you do a search. For example, if I do a search for restaurant inspections Santa Monica CA I’d like to see a list that reads something like: “The information presented here was pulled from the following sites: lacounty.info, smgov.net,” and so on, so I would have some places to start if I wanted to pursue the matter further.