States with spending online
On June 3, 2008, Senator Obama, along with Senators Carper, Coburn and McCain, introduced follow-up legislation: Strengthening Transparency and Accountability in Federal Spending Act of 2008. The legislation would have built on the Federal Funding Accountability act by requiring more information to be posted on USAspending.gov and by making the information more "readable," but it never became law.
For the new administration, OMB Watch has produced suggestions to increase transparency and government openness. Read the report by clicking here. President Obama has stated he hopes to oversee the "most open, honest, and accountable government ever."
The U.S. Census compiles a comprehensive annual survey of state spending information.
Spending information online
Since S. 2590 passed, states have increasingly developed and updated websites in order to disclose information about state government spending. The state websites vary in how much information they offer. Some state websites are comprehensive, while others are limited.
In some cases, a state may not have a well-developed transparency website, but an independent government watchdog within the state will have such a website. In the case of Maine, for example, the state's website offers limited spending information, but a website (MaineOpenGov.org) run by a government watchdog within the state, Maine Heritage Policy Center, offers lots of information.
Below, a table evaluates the comprehensiveness of various state and, in some cases, privately run websites that offer spending information.
- Bills would boost spending transparency, Stateline.org, March 6, 2009
- "Bill Gates Says More State Budget Transparency Needed: Video," Washington Post, June 9, 2010
- Government Spending: State by State Breakdown, Shrinkage is Good, 2009
- Budget Transparency Advances Across Country, Progressive States Network
- USA Spending Online
- Federal Funding Accountability and Transparency Act of 2006, Wikipedia
- govtrack.us, S. 3077: Strengthening Transparency and Accountability in Federal Spending Act of 2008
- DC Examiner, "Obama Should Move Government Into 21st Century Transparency," December 17, 2008
- State Government Finances - U.S. Census Bureau