Jul 17, 2017
From the Government Institute
Public accountability, transparency and open government are among the cornerstones of American democracy. In recent years, expectations have intensified as available reporting mechanisms continue to expand with rapid advances in technology and data analytic capabilities. Demands for instantaneous access to public information challenge the financial reporting practices historically used by governments. Over the past decade, several state and local governments have created “open checkbook” and government spending websites to provide real-time access to financial information. These governments have experiences varying levels of success in improving data quality and providing real-time information on how they spend taxpayer dollars.
This article, reproduced with the permission of the Association of Government Accountants, provides insights around two key questions. First: Is the government meeting the demands of the internal and external user community? Second: What is the current state of the professional standards; and what changes are needed to assure the reporting of real-time financial information?