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Albuquerque from the Inside Out

BY Nancy Scola | Monday, August 30 2010

If you've ever craved an inside peek into how the city of Albuquerque, New Mexico, works, your chance has arrived. Republican Mayor Richard J. Berry and his team have just launched something they're calling "ABQ View," which is, in brief, a web portal for the city's push to be more open and transparent about its operations. Here's how Berry describes why he built the site:

You deserve to know how your government spends your taxes.

ABQ View offers a "view" into how City leaders use the tax dollars you send into City Hall.

You elected me to be accountable for your tax dollars. Every day, I do my best to make good decisions on your behalf.

Together, let's make Albuquerque a leader in municipal government transparency.

ABQ View is elegant, fairly zippy, and well laid out. With a view clicks, you can pull up not only the city's budget and expense records, but details on things like how much municipal employees make hourly based on their job title (you'll pull in $14.77 per hour, for example, as an Albuquerque "animal handler") and the year-to-day earnings of certain city employees, by name. One Mayor Richard J. Berry, for example, has, thus far into 2010, pulled in $70,850.40.

There's also info on things like how much the city has spent in federal Recovery Act dollars, and what sort of incidentals the mayor is putting on his own credit card. New York City's comptroller John Liu rolled out something similar, though more limited, recently, and we covered that here. You can go ahead and check out Albuquerque's new ABQ View here.