For release: IMMEDIATELY
Release Date: 11/06/2017
Mayor-President Broome Releases Draft Open Data Policy for Public Comment
BATON ROUGE, La. — In keeping with her commitment to government transparency and data-driven decision making, Mayor-President Sharon Weston Broome today released a draft open data policy for the City of Baton Rouge and Parish of East Baton Rouge and announced the availability of the draft policy for public comment. The policy is a direct byproduct of the City-Parish’s work with Bloomberg Philanthropies and the Sunlight Foundation through the What Works Cities program that began earlier this year with a focus on enhancing the use of data and evidence in local government.
“I am excited to take our Open Data BR program to an entirely new level through the introduction of this open data policy,” Mayor-President Broome said. “It is my sincere hope that by taking this latest step in public transparency in our City-Parish government that we continue to demonstrate accountability to our citizens and identify new ways to utilize data that create efficiencies, spur innovation, and catalyze growth.”
The purpose of this and related policy measures is to expand the City-Parish’s open data program and make all publishable City-Parish data and information easily available to the public, thereby helping to improve service delivery, increase transparency and access to public information, and enhance coordination and efficiency among departments, partner organizations, and residents.
In March, Mayor-President Broome announced the launch of the Open Neighborhood BR platform, located at http://my.brla.gov. The platform serves as a digital resource for Baton Rouge residents that provides residents with up-to-date, map-based information on recent incidents involving City-Parish agencies — from recent police, fire, and traffic incidents to 311 requests for service and building permits. This policy will serve to continue that work and ensure the City-Parish establishes its commitment transparency and open data.
All residents and members of the public are encouraged to review the draft policy and provide comments via https://mymadison.io/documents/baton-rouge-open-data-policy no later than Nov. 24. The City-Parish is seeking feedback on the governance and processes that the policy will define for the release of open data in the future. The platform is a free, open-source tool that allows users to support or oppose the open data policy text, leave comments, annotate specific content, and interact with other Baton Rouge residents on the proposed policy. All comments submitted by the Nov. 24 deadline will be reviewed closely and considered for incorporation by the Office of the Mayor-President and Department of Information Services.
Once all public comments have been received and incorporated or addressed as necessary, Mayor-President Broome will submit the final proposed policy to the Metropolitan Council for formal adoption and a resolution expressing the support of its implementation. The Office of the Mayor-President will then work with all relevant City-Parish departments to ensure ongoing compliance with the related policy requirements, with data to published to the City-Parish’s Open Data BR portal located at http://data.brla.gov.
When formally adopted, this open data policy will help to spur additional innovative uses of data beyond Open Neighborhood BR that help to better connect residents with information on the government services they receive, as well as internal applications that help City-Parish departments make better decisions and create more efficient operations in the process.