Earlier this month, Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker signed an executive order pledging to “go above and beyond the requirements of the Public Records Law and promote easier, fairer and broader access to public records.”
That order creates a system for citizens to monitor the performance of state agencies. He debuted his Open Book website in 2014, which has gotten favorable reviews for user friendliness and how it catalogs state spending, though it does not offer specifics on what services or goods were purchased.
These initiatives stand in contrast to a pattern of attempts by the Walker administration and the Republican-led Legislature to eliminate or diminish mechanisms of accountability across state government. With wide majorities in the Assembly and Senate, Republicans have said changes are needed to modernize state government so that it can operate more efficiently and spur job growth and economic investment in the state. Continue…