15 Dec: Buono Bill To Enhance Transparency At Authorities Clears Senate

TRENTON – Legislation sponsored by Senate Majority Leader Barbara Buono and Sen. Jennifer Beck to require all independent authorities to maintain an online presence to allow public access to basic financial and other information was passed out of the full Senate today and sent to the governor’s desk.

This measure (A-3908/S-2765) is based on a state Comptroller recommendation that local agencies – from municipal utilities authorities (MUAs) to parking authorities – maintain a website that puts certain basic information at the public’s fingertips. In a report released earlier this year, the Comptroller found that while 65 percent maintain a website of some kind, only 8 percent of the 587 local agencies that have independent fiscal authority and responsibility for more than $5 billion in taxpayer and ratepayer money provide useful public information via the internet.