By Patricia Daddona
PBN Staff Writer
TIVERTON – The Rhode Island Center for Freedom & Prosperity has teamed up with the Tiverton Taxpayer Association to launch a Web portal showing municipal compensation data in the town.
Intended to increase transparency as part of the center’s open government initiative, the interactive database can be accessed at www.TivertonFactCheck.org. Information includes base, overtime and other pay for Tiverton town and school department employees. Users can search payroll data of all 580 municipal and school department employees by function or title.
“Citzens need tools like this to understand how their local government works and how to make it better,” said Rob Coulter, a driving force behind the formation of the Tiverton Taxpayer Association, in a press release.
The association would like to see more data, such as payments to vendors contracted by the town government, posted in the future.
The center, a non-partisan public policy think tank, is planning to accommodate citizens of any municipality that would like to see a similar service for their own cities or towns, said Justin Katz, editor of TivertonFactCheck.org. He is also research director for the center and managing editor of its news and commentary site, OceanStateCurrent.com.
“The Center’s research suggests that Rhode Island municipal government is even more out of whack than state government in comparison with other states,” Katz said. “The greatest value will come when we’re able to compare all of our own cities and towns with each other and perhaps with the country.”
The center also operates RIOpenGov.org, which publishes payroll data for state employees, state vendors and payment data, and pension payment data for all state and certain municipal retirees.
Individuals and local groups interested in developing more databases can contact the center at info@RIFreedom.org.