Delaware Gazette: County joins transparency program
Treasurer Mandel promoting ‘OhioCheckbook.com’
By Dustin Ensinger
May 08, 2015
Delaware on Thursday officially became the first central Ohio entity and the third of Ohio’s 88 counties to join a transparency initiative spearheaded by State Treasurer Josh Mandel.
The county is set to take part in OhioCheckbook.com, an online database of government spending.
“We’re trying to create and army of citizen watchdogs,” Mandel said at an event in Delaware County. “This is all about empowering taxpayers to hold public officials accountable.”
The website launched late last year with details on more than $408 billion spent at the state level over the last seven years. Mandel expanded the program to all 3,962 local governments in the state last month.
The state information has received more than 200,000 page views.
“This is about empowering taxpayers and shining a light on government spending,” Mandel said.
Mandel said he hopes to have Delaware County’s financial information online by July.
County Auditor George Kaitsa said the information could be updated on a monthly or quarterly basis.
The program is designed to be at no cost to the local governments that participate.
“We’re really proud to be one of the first to implement it,” said Commissioner Barb Lewis.
Mandel said he believes that the more local governments that get involved, it will put pressure on others that may be on the fence or choose not to participate.
Orange Township officials are also exploring the possibility of taking part in the program.