0525807rep-frevert-2007reducedOn a 96-3 vote, the Iowa House of Representatives approved a new initiative today to improve transparency and give Iowans easier access to state budget information.

“Iowans should have easy access to information about the state budget available 24 hours a day. The bill we approved today will create a website with a searchable database of all state revenues, expenditures, and tax rates for every zip code in Iowa,” said State Representative Marcie Frevert of Emmetsburg, who managed the bill in the House.

House File 801 establishes the Openness Promotes Efficiency Now (OPEN) act. The state will develop a single, searchable database by 2011 of all expenditures and revenues for each agency in state government for each fiscal year. The database will also include the expenditure of funds received through the federal American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 and a tax rate calculator that will allow citizens and businesses to calculate state and local taxes based on address or zip code.

The bill now goes to the Senate.