Pennsylvanians can now track how the state spends and earns money with a new site called PennWATCH.
The online database, built by the Governor’s Office of Administration, has been in the works for a year and a half, the PA Independent reported, following legislation that passed in the summer of 2011. The data will be updated monthly, according to the site, except for employee compensation, which will be updated annually.
The state does not seem to have posted the raw data (or an API for it) on the site, limiting what local developers can do with the information.
Visit the site here.
“You’re going to be able to see just about everything you’re legally allowed to see,” said Governor Tom Corbett of PennWATCH, according to the PA Independent. Read the whole story here.
While Philly has been applauded for its recent data releases, a similar city-level interactive database with visualizations like those on PennWATCH (as well as the raw data and an API) would no doubt be invaluable. The heart of this is that the sharing of public information online is continuing to happen more widely, so what was innovative a year ago (say, the release of OpenDataPhilly.org, which could soon be an official city data portal) is now very much in need of more to keep pace with an effort to transform transparency.
Knowledge is power!
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