Mass. finances go online

Massachusetts Treasurer Steve Grossman is making good on his campaign promise to bring the state’s finances online. Massachusetts Open Checkbook, a website detailing the state’s expenditures will go live later today in an effort to increase transparency. The website will contain not only expenditures, but contract details as the state works to lower overall contracting costs.

Grossman staked out several aggressive campaign positions to become treasurer. In addition to putting all of the state’s finances online, Grossman intends to move much of Massachusett’s public funds out of large financial institutions and into local community banks. Grossman also plans to look at reforms to the state pension that go further than those passed by the legislature last year.

He will announce the launch of Massachusetts Open Checkbook this morning. The legislature approved the website as part of the FY2011 budget and the treasurer has been working with the Comptroller’s office to ensure the completeness of all financial data.

According to guidance from the treasurers office, the website will detail vendor payments, including not only who was paid but who made the payment; all agency expenditures including state employee earnings and salaries. The only information withheld from the website will be payments of a sensitive nature such as payments to victims of domestic violence.