Recently, in a victory for open data, both chambers of Congress passed with bipartisan support the Digital Accountability and Transparency Act. The bill now heads to the White House for President Barack Obama’s signature. The DATA Act would drastically improve the public’s access to federal spending data by expanding the universe of information the government is required to post online and creating government-wide financial data standards.
Leading the effort to implement the law’s provisions will be the Treasury Department and the Office of Management and Budget. Treasury is a promising open data steward, but unfortunately the OMB’s history doesn’t inspire confidence in its commitment to the law.
Treasury has made good-faith efforts to answer questions, accept feedback and collaborate on designing the new face of federal spending. It reached out to a broad community of users and established avenues for public input. These efforts, combined with its expertise in government financials, have all the makings of a vastly improved system. Continue>>>