Gov. Andrew Cuomo's open.gov.ny just got a major data dump. The transparency section of the site has been updated with campaign contribtuion and expenditure records dating back to 1999, lobbying and enforcement data from the Joint commission on Public Ethics, attorney registrations as far back as 1898 as well as a log of state employee phone numbers.
"Today, we have added millions of records on campaign finance, lobbying, ethics enforcement, the state budget, and other information related to public integrity," said Cuomo in a statement. "It is another example of how the State is using technology to bring the people back into government – empowering voters, strengthening our democracy and promoting transparency and accountability in the Empire State.”
Cuomo touted his new open-date tool in his State of the State Address in January of this year and officially launched it in March. The Cuomo administration has been criticized for a lack of transparency. Cuomo officials have fought to keep some records from his time as Attorney General secret and Cuomo's promise to make his schedules public has been seen as incomplete by many in the press. The administration also keeps close tabs on press calls.
But a number of open data enthusiasts trumpted the latest data push from the administration.
"Credit Governor Cuomo for using the state's powerful open data website, Open NY, to make it easier for New Yorkers to find and use the state's wealth of information. Data set by data set, Open NY is giving New Yorkers a more complete picture of how our government works," said John Kaehny, executive director of Reinvent Albany, in a statement.
Tim Hoefer, director of the Empire Center for New York State Policy, echoed those sentiments: “The Governor's commitment to get more, better data proactively disclosed is encouraging. As more and more diverse data become available, our governments become more accountable and in turn run better and more efficiently.”