Hawaii gets to enjoy Governor Abercrombie’s refusal to disclose the names of judicial nominees forwarded to him by the Judicial Selection Commission, and his administration’s somewhat lame defense of his position put forward in court this week. Meanwhile, in Chicago, long thought of as the Mecca of back room deals, its a new era of openness.
Starting Wednesday, millions of crime statistics dating to 2001 will be posted online in a searchable database. It will be updated daily, providing fodder for residents to evaluate their own neighborhoods, academics to study crime and techie types to create websites or apps.
The release is the latest attempt by the administration of Mayor Rahm Emanuel, who took office in May, to make city dealings more open and counter Chicago’s reputation for entrenched systemic corruption and backroom deals. Chicago officials recently posted online the salaries of city employees, city contracts and lobbying data, with more information expected in coming months.
“It’s a whole new era of openness and transparency,” said Brett Goldstein, the city’s chief data officer and former police officer. “You determine your own analysis.”
Did you catch that? Contracts online. Scanned copies.
To search for and view scanned copies of awarded contracts (2003 to date), please search the Contract Award & Vendor Database.
Our governor needs some coaching from Rahm Emanuel on the political benefits of this kind of openness, as does Honolulu’s mayor.