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Cathy Dyson writes about King George County. You can email her at cdyson@freelancestar.com.

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KG gets D+ on open-government report about budgets

A survey by the Virginia Coalition for Open Government (VCOG) gave King George County a below-average score for how its budget is presented to local citizens.

King George got a D+ and was listed in the press release that explained how many mouse clicks are needed to get to each county’s budget.

“In King George County, it takes six clicks of a mouse to get to this fiscal year’s current operating budget,” the report stated. “It takes five in Norfolk, four in Tazewell County, three in Harrisonburg, two in Amelia County, and just one in Manassas.”

VCOG surveyed all 134 counties and cities on how easy it is for residents to find the annual budget, as well as the user-friendliness of the document and if it is searchable by keywords. The survey also examined if information about budgets can be found on a home-page search box or site map.

The survey found that in 26 localities, mostly in southwestern Virginia, no budgets were posted. The results are in the report: “How Many Clicks Does it Take to Get to Your Budget?” View the report here: ClicksWhitePaper2FULL

VCOG hopes localities and citizens use the report to launch a discussion about the best way to present the budget and other important public records.

King George scored lower than all localities in the region. Fredericksburg and Caroline County got an A, Spotsylvania and Culpeper counties, a B, and Westmoreland County, a C.

Permalink: http://news.fredericksburg.com/kinggeorge/2013/01/09/kg-gets-d-on-open-government-report-about-budgets/