City of Lakeland launches budget transparency tool

LAKELAND —

The City of Lakeland has launched a new digital platform powered by OpenGov that provides residents, elected officials, and staff unprecedented access to the city’s finances and performance information.

The OpenGov platform transforms complex financial data into an interactive, digital format that enables better analysis and understanding of the city’s finances. The intuitive design makes it easier to explore how taxpayer money is collected.

The OpenGov platform displays 10 years of government spending and revenue detail in a user-friendly portal. Users can view historical revenue and expenditure trends over time and explore multiple views of financial data, including by fund, department, expense, or revenue type.

For example, visitors to the platform may answer frequently asked questions such as “What did the city spend on public safety over the past 10 years?” or “How much did the city collect in taxes?

Users can review revenues and expenses along with budget history to get a better understanding of the City of Lakeland’s finances. The tool also allows users to share information directly from the platform via email or on social media.

City Manager Tony Delgado and the City’s Finance Department led the initiative to make the City’s finances more transparent and understandable.

Delgado said, “One of my major goals is to provide a customer centric philosophy to local government and understanding a complex issue like budgeting and finance is important for our citizens and our local officials. By making financial data easily accessible in an intuitive, digital format, I really feel that Lakeland is demonstrating our commitment to efficient, data-driven and open government.”

Beyond sharing information with the public, the City will be able to use OpenGov internally to create custom reports, manage operations to budget, and keep administrators informed.

With the launch of OpenGov, the City of Lakeland joins a growing list of more than 1,000 leading cities, counties, state agencies, school systems, and special districts across the country that leverage OpenGov technology. Users are invited to review budgets using a series of filters and views.

There is a tutorial video on the City’s OpenGov landing page to help users get started using the budget transparency tool.

By OpenGov
Published: August 15, 2016
Source: City of Lakeland launches budget transparency tool