Westminster City Council Publishes Spending Online
23rd November 2010
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Wesminster Council has embarked on a radical new programme to improve trust and understanding among local residents. The programme will focus on publishing all spending above £500 online, therefore opening the council's books to public inspection.

The "Open Council" initiative will ensure that details of how millions of pounds of taxpayers money is spent on a monthly list. which will include the name of the supplier, amount paid and which department paid the bill. Records dating back to the start of the financial year are now available to see online.

This new drive for transparency comes ahead of government plans to direct all councils in England and Wales to publish spending items. Also in the pipeline for March 2011 is an open day at the council's main offices, which will allow the public to see how staff work first hand.

Cllr Colin Barrow, leader of Westminster Council, said: “Our residents should quite rightly be able to see exactly where their hard earned cash goes as it is absolutely critical that we are accountable and transparent to our taxpayers.  With the second lowest council tax in the country, we are confident that we are prudent with the public purse, but now local people can see for themselves how we spend their money to provide hundreds of services in central London. Our aim is not simply to meet a government requirement on publishing spending, but to enable our citizens to play a full and productive part in scrutinising the council and suggesting how we can change or improve the way we work.”

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