City Beat

Report: Sacramento ranks high on transparency

The city of Sacramento is the second most “open” city in the country, according to a report judging public access to government data.

Sacramento ranked behind only San Francisco in the U.S. City Open Data Census, released today. The census was gathered in conjunction with Sunshine Week by transparency groups Code for America, The Sunlight Foundation and The Open Knowledge Foundation.

The groups noted Sacramento’s launch last fall of a data portal on the city website that gives residents easy access to thousands of documents, including city contracts, budget numbers, 311 call data and police statistics. The portal – found at portal.cityofsacramento.org/opendata –is managed for the city by software company Junar.

“It’s been important for us to provide not just open data, but data in a format that people can use,” said Maria MacGunigal, the city’s chief information officer. “We’re delighted it’s getting recognition and is getting used by the community.”

The recognition comes just a week after the city came under some scrutiny for a proposal to do away with a policy that requires city contracts over $1 million to be posted 10 days prior to City Council action on those contracts. Council members rejected doing away with the 10-day window before the idea received much traction, but just the mention of reversing the year-old policy raised concern among local watchdogs.

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