February 26, 2016
Data Coalition News
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The latest:

  • Coalition Calls on OMB to Reject DUNS Proposal
  • Congress Publishes Bill Status as Open Data
  • State and Federal RFIs Raise Two Opportunities for Standardized Reporting

Coalition Calls on OMB to Reject DUNS Proposal

The Coalition has filed a comment letter calling on the OMB Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs to reject the GSA's proposal to continue using the proprietary DUNS Number to identify federal contractors.

Under the Paperwork Reduction Act, GSA must secure approval every three years to continue requiring federal contractors to register with Dun & Bradstreet, Inc., and secure a proprietary DUNS Number from D&B. Approval has been routinely granted since 1997.

However, the Coalition's comment letter argues that the availability of the nonproprietary Legal Entity Identifier and the passage of the DATA Act since the most recent approval mean that the situation has changed. The Coalition is asking OMB to instruct GSA to modify its proposal to include a pathway to liberate federal contractor information from the proprietary DUNS Number.

Congress Publishes Bill Status as Open Data!

On Wednesday, the Government Publishing Office announced that Congressional bill status information will be made available as bulk data for the 113th and 114th Congresses.This latest Congressional open data announcement is incremental but no less good. For the tech companies and entrepreneurs who want to build platforms to create, analyze, and automate legislative information, the Holy Grail would be the adoption of an open data format for the text and substance of laws, bills, and amendments. Reforms like Rep. Brat and Moulton's Statutes at Large Modernization Act are needed to accomplish that. For now, though, it's significant progress that bill status will now be published as open data.

Read the the Government Printing Office's full announcement here

State and Federal RFIs Raise Two Opportunities for Standardized Reporting

Our Coalition has long pointed to the potential of data standardization to consolidate and automate government reporting. By adopting a consistent data structure across multiple reporting requirements, governments can reduce compliance costs in two ways.

First, data standardization allows multiple regimes to be fulfilled simultaneously. For example, the United Kingdom’s Companies House and tax authority adopted an inline XBRL format that allows all UK companies to fulfill financial reporting requirements to both agencies in a single filing.

Second, moving from document-based to data-centric reporting allows software to automatically pull information from business systems and compile it for submission. Standardized data replaces manual compliance with lines of code.

The Dutch Standard Business Reporting (SBR) program exemplifies both benefits.

Two new Requests For Information (RFIs) show that governments in the United States are taking notice.

First, on February 19 the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) issued an RFI seeking information about ways to consolidate farmers’ acreage and crop reporting obligations to two of its sub-agencies: the Farm Service Agency and the Risk Management Agency. By adopting “a common USDA framework for producer commodity reporting,” the Department of Agriculture hopes to reduce administrative costs through both consolidation and automation.

We told Federal Computer Week yesterday that the USDA’s project could both simplify and liberate U.S. agricultural reporting.

Second, on the same day, the Multistate Registration Filing Portal, Inc. (MRFP) - a joint project of twelve states’ attorneys general - issued an RFI seeking input on how to create a filing system for nonprofits’ reporting requirements to multiple states. Most U.S. states require nonprofit organizations to register if they intend to solicit donations within the state, which means nonprofits must comply with multiple overlapping yet distinct state-based reporting regimes.

The MRFP’s vision is for a single electronic system that allows nonprofits to automatically import the information they file with the federal Internal Revenue Service and simultaneously discharge their registration and ongoing reporting requirements with every state in which they operate. The vision is summarized in a one-page document here.

March 1: California Data Demo Day, Sacramento, CA

Confirmed Speakers

The California Data Demo Day, hosted by the Data Coalition in Sacramento, is an opportunity to explore all three benefits of open data: better accountability for citizens, data-driven management for public-sector leaders, opportunities for private sector growth. Executive-branch and legislative-branch speakers will explain how they’re accelerating open data through policy reforms. Members of the Data Coalition will show how they can use open data to transform government and society.

When: Tuesday, 1 March, 2016, 8:00am - 12:00pm (PT) 
Where: Capitol Event Center, Sacramento, CA

Join us, register today!

March 29: Financial Data Summit, Washington, DC

Confirmed Speakers

U.S. financial regulatory agencies have only just begun to modernize the information they collect from disconnected documents into transparent, standardized data.

The Data Coalition’s second annual Financial Data Summit will bring together supporters of this crucial transformation. As financial agencies move from plain-text documents to open formats like XBRL, and embrace interoperable data fields such as the Legal Entity Identifier (LEI) across multiple reporting requirements, they enable better transparency for investors, data-driven analytics for investigators, and cheaper compliance for the industry. 

When: Tuesday, 29 March, 2016, 8:00am - 5:00pm
Where: JW Marriott Washington, Washington, DC

To register click here!
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Research Data Group
RR Donnelley

Booz Allen Hamilton
Morgan Franklin Consulting
StreamLink Software

BackOffice Associates
Center for Organizational Excellence
CGI Federal
Elder Research
Global IDs
Grant Thornton
Information Builders
IRIS Business Services
Merrill Corporation
PR Newswire

BCL Technologies
Gov-PATH Solutions

Trade Association
Object Management Group 


About Us

The Data Coalition advocates on behalf of the private sector and the public interest for the publication of government information as standardized, open data.
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