Today, Sunshine Review launched a new website called Sunshine Standard, which is a new online platform designed for legislators and activists that will become a national model for launching transparency reforms across the country and will assist Americans in holding their legislators accountable.
Mike Barnhart, President of Sunshine Review, said in a statement:
“Most state and local governments do not embrace transparency. Even fewer proactively share information.”
Transparency exists largely at the munificence of officials, with the burden of negotiating complex and costly FOIA petitions resting squarely on the shoulders of citizens and journalists.
Barnhart stressed that “state and local governments, and school districts, have an affirmative obligation to transparency reforms that proactively share the information people need to hold officials accountable for how tax money is spent and how the people’s business is conducted. We must set the bar for state and local government transparency.
Sunshine Standard is a guide to these reforms being implemented across the country.”
Sunshine Standard model transparency legislation was endorsed by state legislators, who attended the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) Annual Meeting earlier this year.
Transparency, at the local, state, and federal levels, is needed now more than ever. When Barack Obama was campaigning for President in 2008, he promised the nation that he would allow people to access a more transparent government. Unfortunately, this has been a promise that has been mostly unfulfilled by the President and Congress.
Cross posted at Bearing Drift