PA releases interactive performance dashboard for state agencies

In releasing his administration’s fourth Report on State Performance, Pennsylvania Governor Ed Rendell unveiled an interactive dashboard that monitors agency activities, priorities and challenges. The 2009-10 report helps citizens and other interested readers evaluate Pennsylvania’s efforts to deliver services during the national economic downturn, the governor said.

“It is more important than ever for state government to serve taxpayers as efficiently as possible,” the Governor said. “This emphasis on accountability is especially important when public resources are stretched thin and every cent must be spent wisely.” According to officials, state employees fell by nearly 5,000, or six percent, between 2003 and 2010 – this despite an increased demand for public services, Gov. Rendell noted.

Gov. Rendell said the new format will further the goals of transparency and efficiency in state government by presenting dozens of state goals, ranging from education, economic development, and public safety to health and human services, consumer protection and government efficiency. Some of measurements available in the report include the percentage of students proficient in math and reading, the number of individuals served by the Emergency Food Assistance Program, or the number of State Police sobriety checkpoints over the last several years.

Budget Secretary Mary Soderberg said the new online “dashboard” version is itself a demonstration of how the state is doing more with less. The report is only available online, saving on printing and distribution costs.

The new dashboard format not only allows readers to explore and review the activities of government agencies in detail, it helps everyday citizens understand key priorities through easy-to-understand visual aids and intuitive navigation.

“By closely monitoring the results of the programs and services they provide, state agencies can see which work best and focus efforts on those that need improvement,” the Governor said.