In a continued effort to be as transparent as possible, the city of Huber Heights is opening up its checkbook and revealing online every penny spent and collected for the public to view.
The city has contracted with OpenGov — a company that enables governments to share financial data with the public — that will transform raw data into a user-friendly, interactive digital format.
Huber Heights plans to roll out its site Monday, and the financial information will be updated monthly, city officials said. The city’s budget will be released first, then the checkbook feature a few weeks later, assistant city manager Donnie Jones said.
“Huber Heights has always been dedicated to providing the facts,” City Manager Rob Schommer said. “There has been some misinformation presented in the past, and to clear up any confusion, we want to make certain that our residents have access to timely and accurate information straight from the city.”
The platform can be accessed at www.huberheightsoh.opengov.com, and it also will be linked from the city’s main website at www.hhoh.org.
The city will pay OpenGov $8,500 annually to host and maintain the site. Schommer said Huber Heights is OpenGov’s first client from the Dayton area.
Emery Phipps Jr., who runs the Brick City Watchdogs Facebook page, is strongly in favor of this project. He said this may ease some concerns that residents have, including not knowing how to make a public records request.
“This will not only help our city and staff to run things a little better, they know now they’re being held accountable,” Phipps said. “Council will be on their toes as well. I would encourage people to go out and use it. Now that the tools are there, start doing something with it, or stop complaining.”
Users will be able to view historical revenue and expenditure trends dating back to 2006, while exploring multiple views of budget data, including by fund, department, expense or revenue.
A frequently asked questions section also will be featured.
“This will be an asset to the community,” Jones said. “We think $8,500 is a good bargain, and it’s going to accomplish what we want.”
More than 250 governments across 37 states use OpenGov’s services, according to its website.
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