Reflecting on the success of his DATA Act, which mandates government-wide data standards for federal spending, Darrell Issa (R-CA) vowed to pass the Financial Transparency Act, which makes the same changes in financial regulatory reporting. “This is the opening round for open data,” said Issa. “There are companies that will take advantage of it and make fortunes. There are nonprofits that will take advantage of it and embarrass people in the administration, not just this one but the one to come.”
Meanwhile, executive branch speakers gave attendees a first look at how the DATA Act is changing federal spending. Fiscal Assistant Secretary Dave Lebryk showed the first public images of the future spending transparency platform, a successor to USASpending.gov. The Department of Health and Human Services’ DATA Act program management office introduced an interactive data dictionary that will be used to automate grant reporting. Small Business Administration Deputy Chief Financial Officer Tim Gribben led attendees through the SBA’s process for applying the new government-wide data standards for insights into its own spending.
Beyond the DATA Act and Financial Transparency Act, conference sessions also covered innovations in utilities reporting and in data structure for legislation itself. Washington Utilities and Transportation Commission senior advisor Danny Kermode explained his agency’s plan for open-data reporting by utilities, replacing the current PDF-based process.
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