Utah’s commitment to transparency getting kudos

Ensuring public training, accessibility is the next step
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Salt Lake City — It’s easier to find what you’re looking for in government records in Utah than it is in 44 other states, according to a new report that ranks Utah’s commitment to transparency.

The Center for Data Innovation, a non-profit, non-partisan research institute that works to ensure open data policies, gave Utah a perfect score for its work to bring transparency to governing institutions–even though some of those policies are still being fleshed out.

“Utah has made serious and remarkable strides in its commitment to an open and transparent state government,” said Maryann Martindale, executive director of the good government group Alliance for a Better UTAH. “Lawmakers should continue their commitment to transparency by ensuring that the potential of these policies is made fully available to the general public.”

The state was judged on four criteria, including the presence of an open data policy, the quality of that policy, how that data is accessed, and whether or not that data is easily accessed. Utah tied with Hawaii, Illinois, New York, Maryland and Oklahoma.

Utah’s high ranking came in part from a law sponsored by State Senator Deidre Henderson earlier this year. That law significantly increased the state’s commitment to big data transparency, even though much of the bill’s details are still being worked out.

“Senator Henderson has worked hard on transparency issues, she should be commended,” said Martindale.

The full report is available on the center’s website: http://www.datainnovation.org/2014/08/state-open-data-policies-and-portals/

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Contact:
Isaac Holyoak
Communications Director, Alliance for a Better UTAH
801.664.9751 | isaac@betterutah.org

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