New website increasing transparency for Cambria County

Local News
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Cambria County officials launched a new website to better manage taxpayer money and increase transparency.

If you open up the Cambria County website and click on ‘County Transparency’ you can check out the new OpenGov system. It puts the county’s financial information in easy-to-read graphs and charts.

“This gives us the ability to react quicker to financial data. If we’re experiencing any revenue decreases or expense increases,” said Ed Cernic, Jr., the county’s controller.

Depending on the different information, it will be updated every week, quarter or once a year. The site tracks budgets, revenue and spending, as well as retiree data and overdose statistics.

The three-year contract with OpenGov to create the website costs the county $45,000 a year.

Currently, the county can’t post confidential information, like forfeiture accounts through the district attorney’s office. Next year, thanks to new state legislation, more of that information will be made public.

The OpenGov website also monitors growing expenses, like the judicial system and the prison.

“The criminal system that we have to take care of with the prison and the prosecutions, those costs are not going down. So, we have to monitor them more frequently than we’ve ever had to,” Cernic said.

The controller’s office says it’s a tool to manage taxpayer money and be transparent.

“This is the people’s government and they have a right to know that information so they can see how their money’s being spent and where it’s being spent and what it’s being spent on.”

Later this summer, all county department heads will be trained how to use the website’s budgeting tool to create their budgets for the following year.

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