By John Pinkney
According to recent Canyon News, the City of Santa Monica has been uniquely committed to “Transparency, Collaboration and Third Party Applications Through Open Data,” and has now received national recognition for it in the Technology Solutions area, from The Public Technology Institute – a non-profit organization with a focus on technology issues such as those the Coachella Valley government law firm also believes will impact our locality.
Working in the areas of research and education, PTI provides research, education, executive-level consulting services, and draws attention to best practices through its national recognition programs.
Other regions receiving Awards in the category of Data & Performance Metrics, included Williamsburg, VA; Alameda County, CA; Durham, NC; Boston, MA; Sacramento County, CA; and San Mateo County, CA. Specific programs ranged from the basic ‘use of technology to foster open government and community engagement,’ to a Performance Management System; and the use of a ‘Business Intelligence Platform to Transform Public Assistance Programs.’
The City now divides its ‘Open Data Portal’ datasets into 6 categories: Finance, Permits & Licenses, Public Assets, Public Safety, Public Services, and Transportation. Also featured are lists of names and locations of current and proposed wireless ‘hotspots;’ as well as a ‘comprehensive record of more than 35,000 trees comprising Santa Monica’s Urban Forest.’ The response of police to calls made by the public and those initiated by officers are on record and are also available here, as well as detailed information concerning the City’s operating budget and and capital improvement budget are there, also at Santa Monica’s OpenGov Finance Portal.