City adds accountability pages to website

By Kate A. Hallock
Resident Community News

Last month, City of Jacksonville Mayor Alvin Brown launched two new webpages that will provide residents information on accountability, performance and progress.

The Mayor laid the groundwork two years ago, establishing the Public Accountability Office to better manage public information and build stronger avenues of access for Jacksonville residents. In August 2012, he appointed Alexis Lambert as the new Public Accountability Officer. Lambert previously served as the Florida Attorney General’s Sunshine counsel.
One of the first projects was a collaborative effort between the Public Affairs Office and the Information Technologies Division to launch JaxScore 1.0, a public-facing dashboard to provide information on the city’s performance and progress toward the administration’s top priorities. The online tool was previewed by COJ’s Deputy Chief of Administration Cleveland Ferguson with a JAX2025 subcommittee back in November 2013 and then launched in early March.

JaxScore currently offers 35 static “scorecards” with specific performance information, such the percent of live releases under Animal Care & Protective Services (80.98 percent as of October 2013). In future versions, the City intends to provide more in-depth and interactive access to finances and performance measures that will provide more transparency and accountability into City operations.

Clicking on a scorecard (www.coj.net/jaxscore-1-0.aspx) will serve up 2013 data as a PDF. The data is primarily quarterly, year over year back to 2011; however some of the information has not been updated since June 2013.

• High transparency score

Later in March, during Sunshine Week, the City announced that the First Amendment Foundation rated the City of Jacksonville’s website as the most transparent city website in Florida with a high score of 80 (the average score in the survey was 50 out of 100 points), and Mayor Brown announced the launch of a new transparency web page. The new web page (www.coj.net/Transparency or www.coj.net/public-accountability.aspx) provides a central location for information about the city budget, public meetings, the Mayor’s Office, City Council, and city departments.

Five of the 11 buttons take the user to another page on coj.net, where navigation to one’s desired goal can be more than a few clicks. The other six buttons open up a new browser window for independent websites, such as the city’s Procurement Division, Building Inspection Division, the Clerk of Courts, the Property Appraiser,
630-CITY, and the Duval County Tax Collector.

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