MORGANTOWN, W.Va. (WBOY) — West Virginia State Auditor J.B. McCuskey has committed to providing transparency in public spending, moving the Mountain State from one of the least transparent in the country to the most transparent.
The state approached a milestone ensuring the residents have access to that information on state spending through the website WVCheckbook.gov and the Mountaineer Project. Auditor McCuskey and OpenGov CEO, Zack Bookman celebrated their achievement with a roundtable discussion at the Waterfront Hotel. Bookman discussed the modernization of administrative software to put the state at the forefront of transparency.
“We’re celebrating that we’ve reached the 40-county milestone. So, every single dollar that the state spends is on the checkbook, every dollar that the state brings in is now in the checkbook, and citizens in 50 cities, 40 counties, and all 55 county school boards now have first-class immediate transparency for voters,” McCuskey said. “I think right now this is important this is important as people in the next couple months are going to be entering the voting booth and holding every single person who puts their name on that ballot accountable.”
In the discussion with community leaders and government officials, both McCuskey and Bookman mentioned how Project Mountaineer has built trust with constituents across the state.
“We are the number one most transparent state in the United States,” McCuskey said. “For us when the outside world is looking at us now and we have all these amazing economic development opportunities we want to show all of our new West Virginians as well as the West Virginians that are here that you’re getting a square deal from your government. But more importantly than that, we have so many parts of our government that needs to be fixed. We need to make sure our DHHR is doing what it can do, we need to make sure our roads are right, we need to make sure our infrastructure is right, and we need to make sure our education system is doing everything it can and should to educate our students.”
McCuskey said that begins and ends with good data, taxpayers taking control over their government, and admitting that there are some things that need to be worked on in reforming the government to make it effective. He also said that there are other states who are calling to speak with him about becoming transparent.