Seeing through Transparency

by Melissa Brunner

Kansas ranks among the top 10 in a new study on government transparency, accountability and
anti-corruption mechanisms. That might sound good, until you consider that a grade of "C" was good enough to place that high. Not only that, but Kansas received an "F" grade in lobbying disclosure and state insurance commission, and a "D-" for ethics enforcement agencies.

The study was conducted by the Washington-based Center for Public Integrity, Public Radio
International and Global Integrity. They reviewed what they term "corruption indicators." No state received an "A," so it's not like Kansas is alone in taking its knocks from the group. Bottom line, the group says, there are no winners.

The group says its investigation "is a test of the structure that governs the government, documenting the laws on the books and investigating the actions that enforce those laws." You can find the complete results here:

Meantime, what do you believe would make a truly transparent government? I say let's start with easy to understand web sites with access to meeting agendas, minutes, bill/ordinance language and more. Oh, and with a search function that works! Your ideas?


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