The Palmetto Insider

The blog of the South Carolina Policy Council

Richland County Latest to Bring Check Registers On-Line

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Richland County has become the 18th local government in South Carolina to begin putting its check register online at this link.

More than a year ago, the Policy Council launched the debate on transparency in South Carolina with a report on reforms needed to open government to the public and encourage accountability and transparency. The January 2009 report called for online check registers, a ban on taxpayer funded lobbying, on-the-record voting by legislators, and income disclosures for lawmakers and candidates for public office.

“When government spends people’s money, it’s just common courtesy to show them how it’s spending it,” said SC Comptroller Richard Eckstrom in a news release on the Richland County transparency effort.“Other governments in the Midlands and across the state would do well to follow their lead.” Eckstrom noted that he and the Policy Council worked together in the campaign launched last year to encourage local governments – cities, counties and school districts – to post details about individual expenditures on the Web.

For a list of local governments that have begun posting their check registers on the Web, go to: http://www.cg.sc.gov/transparency/.

Taxpayers are still waiting, and waiting, for the city of Columbia to fulfill its promise of on-line financial transparency. Columbia Mayor Bob Cole promised to embrace transparency—and vowed to be the first city in the state to place all its financial records on-line—in April of 2009.

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Written by Robert Appel

February 23, 2010 at 2:13 pm

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