Massachusetts Comptroller Tom Shack has released a new transparency plan that he says will enhance the budget and spending information available to the public. The key part of the Comptroller’s initiative is a new online website called “CTHRU” which will be available to the public on September 14.
The new system, a cloud-based web platform, will provide data into how taxpayer’s dollars are spent. It will also give users the ability to search historical data as far back as 2010. The Comptroller says that the portal will give more information to the public while also reducing the burden on staffers when it comes to responding to public records requests.
Socrata will be providing the technology and has worked with state officials to institute lean development with the CTHRU project. CTHRU represents the first time a government entity within the Commonwealth has developed in a lean environment. By going lean, the Comptroller’s office and Socrata were able to stand up the new portal in seven months.
The Comptroller’s office oversees some $60 billion in public money for the Commonwealth. In a statement, Shack said the portal represents the latest step in a broader effort to shed more light on how taxpayer dollars are being sent. He added that the decision to go with a cloud based portal was in direct response to Governor Baker’s request that agency heads look for ways to utilize new technologies for the public good.