Nassau County Launches Open Checkbook

Image: Socrata

County controller pledged to open and modernize finances so that anyone could see how public tax dollars are spent.

PLANO, TEXAS – Tyler Technologies, Inc. (NYSE: TYL) announced today that Socrata Open Expenditures has launched in Nassau County, New York.

The new finance app supports Nassau County’s plan to improve trust in government with transparency, public engagement, and data. The county is developing a robust financial reporting, internal data sharing, and open data program to revolutionize the way it uses data as a strategic asset.

The county’s more than 7,000 employees and 1.4 million residents can now access transaction details of the county’s expenditures, including checkbook-level details; payments to vendors across departments, funds, and expense categories; and spending based on categories over time.

“Our vision is to create a Nassau County where everyone can transparently see the county’s finances just like they can with their own. We are putting the county’s checkbook onto people’s phones and into their living rooms in an easy-to-understand format,” said Nassau County Comptroller Jack Schnirman. “Opening up and modernizing the County’s finances is key to a government that uses data to find efficiencies and to ask and answer questions. That’s why we’ve invited residents, students, reporters, and researchers to join us in looking at this data for opportunities to improve.”

Over the past year, the county has made strides in developing a data strategy to improve resource allocation, operational efficiencies, and economic development. It hosted a Socrata Data Academy in December to train staff in data analysis to deliver better services to residents, and the county is in the process of implementing Socrata Connected Government Cloud (SCGC), an advanced internal data-sharing platform.

SCGC will serve as a self-service, centralized data repository for Nassau County employees. The extensible, cloud-based, data sharing platform, which was built specifically for governments, streamlines data governance and access across organizations.

Schnirman is a long-time supporter of implementing technological solutions to enhance government operations. As the city manager in Long Beach, NY, he implemented a 311-style smartphone application for residents.

Along with Open Expenditures and SCGC, the county plans to launch another public-facing portal, Open Payroll. These cloud-based applications will track performance across the county and serve as a library for public datasets.

“The first step to building a data-driven government is making data discoverable, usable, and actionable,” said Kevin Merritt, president of the Data & Insights Division of Tyler Technologies. “By approaching problem-solving with the use of data — whether for resource allocation, staffing, or engaging with the public — Nassau County is demonstrating impressive leadership in the government data sphere.”

Nassau County is the sixth largest county in New York. Tyler also provides its iasWorld® appraisal and tax software, CLT Appraisal Services™ mass appraisal services, and Brazos™ e-citation solution to the county.

About Tyler Technologies, Inc.

Tyler Technologies (NYSE: TYL) is a leading provider of end-to-end information management solutions and services for local governments. Tyler partners with clients to empower the public sector – cities, counties, schools and other government entities – to become more efficient, more accessible and more responsive to the needs of their constituents. Tyler’s client base includes more than 15,000 local government offices in all 50 states, Canada, the Caribbean, Australia, and other international locations. Forbes has included Tyler on its “Best Small Companies” list eight times, and ranked Tyler on its “Best Midsize Employers” list in 2018.

Read more about Open Checkbook implementation:

CTO Download: Achievements in Open Government

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EfficientGov Staff

EfficientGov is an independent information service providing innovative solutions to fiscal and operational challenges facing cities and towns around the world.