Community college will put expenditures on Web site Written – Kristin Babcock, Johnson County Sun

College will put expenditures on Web site Written by Kristin Babcock
Wednesday, 26 November 2008 00:00

Soon everyone will be able to see exactly how Johnson County Community College spends its money.

The college, 12345 College Blvd., Overland Park, plans to add to its Web site a page that details how tax dollars are spent. The site is http://www.jccc.net.

Most of the information should be searchable online by mid to late January, JCCC President Terry Calaway said. The goal is to be as transparent as possible about how tax dollars are spent, he said.

“We’re headed down the path of doing the best we can,” Calaway said. “We hope someone will be able to see just about anything they are looking for. We hope to get there and we think we can.”

Right now some information about the budget is already online, but that information cannot be searched. What will not be available is much of the school’s revenue information. Most of that information would include details about student tuition and fees, Calaway said.

“We wanted to protect their privacy rights,” Calaway said.

The site is being developed with help from the information technology and public relations department at the college. KanView is being used as a model. KanView allows searches of state expenditures and revenue.

JCCC Trustee Ben Hodge suggested the college develop such a Web site.

“With technology as advanced as it is I don’t think it is unreasonable for local governments to be encouraged to provide a maximum level of transparency,” Hodge said.

“If we can hit 80 percent at every level of government that’s better than where we are right now.”

JCCC may be the only government entity at the college, city or county level in Kansas to have such a Web site, Hodge said.

“I hope that we can set a good example at the community college for other levels of government including boards of education,” Hodge said.

Hodge served in the Kansas Legislature when that body passed a resolution that led to KanView.

“We have one full-time auditor on staff but now we’re going to have 300,000 auditors,” Hodge said. “I think that’s a good thing for government. It will remind us that we need to be looking over our shoulders when we’re spending the taxpayers’ money.”

Contact Kristin Babcock at 385-6011 or kristinbabcock@npgco.com

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