Meigs Independent Press: Meigs County participates in State Treasurer Mandel’s transparency program, OhioCheckbook.com
Meigs Independent Press
By Carrie Gloeckner
March 30, 2017
POMEROY, Ohio – Meigs County is the latest to join OhioCheckbook.com, following an announcement during the Meigs County Commissioners’ meeting March 30, 2017.
Jamie Barker, public affairs liaison with the Ohio Treasurer’s Office, addressed the Meigs County Commissioners concerning the website which will allow the public access to see how the county is spending government funds. According to Barker, the website went live just prior to his attendance to the weekly commissioners’ meeting.
“I believe the people of Meigs County have a right to know how their tax money is being spent, and I applaud local leaders here for partnering with my office to post the finances on OhioCheckbook.com,” said Treasurer Mandel. “By posting local government spending online, we are empowering taxpayers across Ohio to hold public officials accountable.”
The Meigs County Commissioners praised the efforts of Meigs County Auditor Mary Byer-Hill and her staff for making the participation in OhioCheckbook.com possible.
“Meigs County is pleased to partner with the Ohio Treasurer’s Office to post our spending on OhioCheckbook.com at no cost to the county,” said Auditor Byer-Hill. “Thanks to this transparency tool, the people of Meigs County can now see how their hard earned tax dollars are being spent.”
Meigs County Treasurer Peggy Yost and her staff were also instrumental in making the project possible. Both Yost and Byer-Hill were present for the presentation.
Barker explained that one full year of data is available on the website currently and going forward all of Meigs County’s spending will be on the website. The data begins with 2016. He said on the website, specific items can be viewed through categories such as equipment. The website has a “check” image with details of what was spent by the County on equipment in 2016.
“Meigs is the 28th county, I believe, to have a live website,” Barker said during the meeting. He commended the Commissioners for Meigs County participating in the transparency program.
According to a statement from Ohio Treasurer Josh Mandel, the announcement was made of “the launch of the Meigs County online checkbook on OhioCheckbook.com. In December 2014, Treasurer Manuel launched OhioCheckbook.com, which sets a new national standard for government transparency and for the first time in Ohio history puts all state spending information on the internet. OhioCheckbook.com recently earned Ohio the number one government transparency ranking in the country for the second year in a row.”
According to Barker, the villages of Pomeroy, Racine, and Middleport also participate in OhioCheckbook.com. Barker hopes that other villages and townships would sign on to the free service through the state. “It’s catching on. We have several here in Meigs County,” Barker said.
To view Meigs County’s site click on MeigsCounty.OhioCheckbook.com.