Alaska's Open Data Portal Still Dark

Alaska's Checkbook Online has been down since July -- after the state switched its financial system.

by Nathaniel Herz, Alaska Dispatch News, Anchorage / November 20, 2015

(TNS) -- A state website that displayed details of public spending is still in limbo after crashing when Alaska launched a new finance system this summer, officials said this week.

The Sarah Palin-era Checkbook Online website collects and publishes spending data from state agencies, Gov. Bill Walker’s office, and the Legislature. But it hasn’t worked since July, when the state launched its new IRIS financial system.

Officials at the Department of Administration, which maintains Checkbook Online, said in September they hoped the website would be running again by early October.

But the information online first has to be reviewed by each agency to make sure it doesn't contain confidential payments, like for medical care protected by privacy laws. And the health department, one of the largest state agencies, hasn’t finished that process, said Andy Mills, a spokesman for the Administration Department.

Mills didn’t offer a timeline for the website's relaunch.

“We’re waiting,” he said. “We don’t know how long that wait will take.”

©2015 the Alaska Dispatch News (Anchorage, Alaska) Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.