Archive | Transparency

New law aims at better access to Md. government data as state gets B- for transparency

April 8, 2014

Some people don't like how much Maryland spends or how it spends it, but an outside group says the state is getting a little better at reporting on where taxpayer dollars go. At the same time, a bill passed unanimously and signed by Gov. Martin O'Malley Tuesday is designed to make more of Maryland's government data more available and searchable to everyone through creation of a new Council on Open Data. [...more]

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House sends hundreds of bills to Senate; public information, Common Core among topics

March 18, 2014

In a flurry of activity to meet Monday's deadline for bills sent to the Senate for action, the House of Delegates passed over 210 bills since Friday, most of them with unanimous or near unanimous votes. [...more]

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Senators object to bill that would force most legislators to commute

February 23, 2014

Sen. Allan Kittleman’s colleagues on a Senate committee were clearly unhappy with his legislation that would force most of them to commute and no longer reimburse their lodging in Annapolis during the session. Kittleman, R-Howard and Carroll, has again introduced legislation that would restrict the housing stipend legislators are permitted during session – a maximum $101 per day – to those living more than 50 miles from Annapolis. [...more]

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Marylanders unhappy with information flow on laws, regs, taxes

August 15, 2013

Two thirds of voters are not satisfied with the information they get about Maryland laws, regulations and taxes, according to the results of a mobile phone survey being released Thursday by the OpenGov Foundation. The foundation, a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization focused on using technology to make public information more accessible, also found that 78% of Maryland voters want advance notification about Maryland policies that will impact them. [...more]

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Legislative Watch website provides voting records for Assembly members

August 14, 2013

The website, Maryland Legislative Watch, has released newly aggregated voting records for each delegate and senator in the General Assembly. Previously, those votes were not available by member, said founder and coordinator Elizabeth Myers. [...more]

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Gansler proposes new inspector general to take ‘back room’ out of state spending

July 24, 2013

As he prepares to run for governor, Attorney General Doug Gansler is proposing a six-point Good Government overhaul to beef up accountability and transparency on state spending. This includes a new public information inspector general to ensure taxpayer dollars are spent efficiently and effectively. [...more]

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Spending on state lobbying shifts from gambling to health care

June 26, 2013

Eight out of the 10 highest paid lobbyists in 2012 are on track to retain their titles in 2013, while business spending on lobbyists shifted from gambling to health care, according to a post-session report released by the State Ethics Commission. For the six month reporting period from Nov. 1, 2012 to April 30, 2013, lobbyists have reported earning $23 million. [...more]

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Analysis: StateStat measures much, but delivers less than promised

June 12, 2013

StateStat is a substantial part of Maryland state government’s transparency enhancements relating to performance measurement. The program was much touted in the early days of the O'Malley-Brown administration, but now chugs along in obscurity. While StateStat conveys much information, it can be substantially improved so that it comes close to living up to the high expectations inherent in the governor’s StateStat messaging. [...more]

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Commentary: More NSA disclosures cause loss of trust

June 11, 2013

Who will protect us from those who are supposed to protect us? That is the question that lingers after the disclosure of two programs that monitor the phone records and Internet use of millions of Americans by the National Security Agency, based at Maryland's Fort Meade in Anne Arundel County. [...more]

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Foundation aims to improve Maryland legislative website

May 23, 2013

To better understand the state’s challenges to political transparency, the OpenGov Foundation and MarylandReporter.com teamed up to lead a small focus group last Thursday to analyze the access point to all of Maryland’s State House information -- the state legislative website. The conclusion? Transparency in Maryland has a long way to go. [...more]

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