Good news, folks—Benton county officials have pulled something pretty cool out of their bag of tricks. No, not a stripper… a web application designed to give citizens much improved access to the county budget! Available as of Tuesday, April 14, conspiracy theorists and concerned citizens alike will have easy access to the what, where, and how of the budget in a way that is promised to far exceed the old PDF releases.
Developed by Socrata, Inc., said web app will offer both proposed and historical budget data in interactive as well as graphical layouts. There will also be maps aplenty, laying out locations for major capital projects. I don’t know about you, but cartography gets me weak in the knees.
While this may not strike too serious a blow in the minds of those seeking greater transparency in government, it’s still an excellent move that will help create a more informed citizenry. And really, it’s our money anyway, so bravo. Though Corvallis may suffer an above-average tendency towards band-wagoneering and self-propagandizing, we’re also a highly informed and community-driven populace, electing leaders who are often the same. One can only believe that this general attitude is directly behind moves like this. So a pat on the back to everyone involved.
You will be able to view the app by visiting www.co.benton.or.us/budget/
By Johnny Beaver