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Website eases transparency for municipalities

July 12, 2012
Original Publication by Northern Valley Suburbanite

It's not just journalists who want easy access to public records. Many, if not all, residents would love to see more transparency from their local governments. Today's technology makes that easier than ever for officials to deliver.

The Borough of Leonia and Township of Teaneck are now using a web service that allows them to post an incredible amount of their public documents like meeting agendas and minutes.

Unlike when towns post their agendas on their municipal websites, this service gives residents the options to search the entire collection of documents just as easily as they'd search something on Google.

If a homeowner wanted to look up any discussion about projects in their neighborhoods or how often the council went out to bond for purchases this service (www.iqm2.com) makes that task a lot easier than searching through dozens of meeting agendas or minutes.

IQM2 can also save money for municipalities if they use the service instead of distributing paper copies of agendas and minutes for council members.

There will also probably be fewer requests from residents for hard copes when they can search everything at home.

Leonia pays $950 a month for posting documents and videos.

Officials said the borough could save up to 90 percent in copying and distributing costs.

As local governments look for ways to cut spending, technology like should be strongly considered for its advantages in providing more transparency with a lower cost than how business is usually done.

We applaud Leonia and Teaneck for giving their residents this resource and hope to see others take the same steps.

To see Leonia's public documents website, visit leoniaboroughnj. iqm2.com.

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