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New Castle Seeks To Make Financials Simpler For Public

New Castle Town Board members unanimously approved a new software deal at their meeting on Monday, Dec. 15.
New Castle Town Board members unanimously approved a new software deal at their meeting on Monday, Dec. 15. Photo Credit: Tom Auchterlonie

CHAPPAQUA, N.Y. --  New Castle's financial data will be presented in a new way as a result of a software program it has adopted.

The Town Board recently voted to pay for a program called OpenGov, which is intended to make municipal financial data easier for the public to sort through and understand.

The Town Board unanimously approved the deal at its meeting on Monday, Dec. 15. Under the terms of the deal, New Castle will pay OpenGov an annual subscription of $6,500 for three years, although the town can opt out after the first year.

"Residents can see where revenue is generated, how funds are distributed, and the goods and services provided for the community," the town notes in a community email newsletter sent out following the vote.

At the board's meeting, Town Administrator Jill Shapiro cited the challenges of presenting town budget data, which is currently done by making PDF files available online. The software program, Shapiro explained, takes the budget and puts it into charts, allowing users to manipulate the data.

People can use OpenGov to look up budget line items, view financial trends and see how the town is performing financially during a fiscal year, Shapiro said.

Shapiro also explained that the program will be helpful to town staff in making budget compilations.

OpenGov, which is based in Mountain View, Calif., lists several prominent investors, including venture-capital firm Andreesen Horowitz and executives from major tech companies such as Google and Facebook.

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