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Syracuse has taken a step toward transparency in government, with city officials launching a new portal for open data.
DataCuse gives the public access to wide array of information on infrastructure, housing, neighborhoods, and lead paint, according to the Syracuse Post-Standard. The chief data officer, Sam Edelstein, hopes that the service will provide meaningful information to citizens who need it.
“We’ve asked people what sort of city data is useful for them,” Edelstein said. “If they’re filling for a grant or looking at the best way to provide a service, so we’re trying to respond to that kind of need.”
The statistics that are currently available on the site have details on potholes patched, water main breaks, road ratings, vacant homes, and lead paint risks.
Edelstein hopes that others will use this information to generate their own projects and share the results with the city.
The website also has a “Data Recommendations” portion at the bottom of the main page of the website which allows citizens to suggest a new dataset that they may deem helpful. It also allows people to voice their concerns with an existing dataset.
This website might also render waiting on FOIL request responses a thing of the past. Carol Dwyer said the site will also ease the burden of responding to FOIL requests as much of that information frequently requested is now available on the site.
Sites like DataCuse will allow engagement on local issues people care about – and give an up-to-date platform to people to hold those who represent them accountable
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