Ten organisations, including Publish What You Fund, have this week praised US congressional and administration efforts to improve federal financial transparency.
In a letter sent on June 21st, the organisations state that the recently introduced Digital Accountability and Transparency Act of 2011 (or DATA Act), and President Obama’s June 13, 2011, Executive Order would transform federal spending transparency.
The DATA Act would establish a federal transparency board, with the mission of expanding spending transparency to the entire government and identifying government-wide data standards.
President Obama’s executive order also immediately establishes a Government Accountability and Transparency Board that in the coming months will develop a plan to integrate government spending data.
These are encouraging developments, however the letter also notes that the DATA Act would sunset after seven years. Similarly, President Obama’s Executive Order has a lifespan that relies on the willingness of his administration to pursue transparency objectives. For these reasons, Publish What You Fund and the other organisations that have signed the letter urge that these commitments be extended indefinitely.