The City of Monticello, Arkansas is committed to creating an unprecedented level of openness in government. City officials will work together and with the public to ensure open and effective government as well as public trust and establish a system of transparency, public participation, collaboration, and accountability.
As one of his first acts in office, Mayor Zackery Tucker issued the city's first Open Government Directive. The directive established new principles to help guide city government's actions intended to commit to transparency, meaningful public participation, and collaborating with the public and other governments.
Open Government Principles
With the development of new technologies and increasingly connected and engaged population, a growing pressure had been placed on the City of Monticello, Arkansas government leaders to adopt open government practices that will promote transparency, citizen participation, and collaboration. In order to change how government works, provide more effective government services, and establish a more robust democracy, the City of Monticello, Arkansas adopts the following open government principles which hereby all City Government operations should support:
1. City Government is committed to transparency. The City Government should adopt policies, practices and procedures that allow citizens to have access to understandable, accurate, reuseable, and auditable data and information about government operations and decisions making (with updates available as they are made, whenever possible). City government should use new technologies to put information about their operations and decisions online. Departments should also seek public feedback to identify information of greatest use to the public. The city should operate under a presumption of openness and accessibility, while also maintaining privacy, confidentiality, security and compliance with all relevant laws. These policies, practices and procedures will increase accountability, promote informed public participation, and create economic development opportunities
2. City Government is committed to meaningful public participation. City Government believes members of the public have a valuable role in governing their communities and should have opportunities to take part in government decisions making. City Government supports establishing guidelines and practices that will enable the public to contribute options and ideas regarding political, economic, management, and other decisions using a variety of methods, as conveniently as possible for citizens. These guidelines and practices will create more informed and effect policies and enhance and expand opportunities for the public to participate throughout decision-making processes.
3. City Government is committed to collaborating with the public and across government. City government should create opportunities to work jointly with individuals as well as public, non-profit, academic and private sector groups to address the needs of the community. The city should also enhance and expand its cooperation among city departments and other governmental agencies in order to more effectively fulfill the city’s obligations to citizens, Furthermore, citizens are encouraged to contribute their time and knowledge. The city will take steps to provide efficient and effective feedback into decisions making processes.
4. City Government is committed to sharing best practices and software and other resources with other government entities. City Government acknowledges that, in face of budget decreases, government entities at every level must cut costs and find efficiencies. An enormous cost-saving opportunity exists in the city’s information technology resources acquisition practices. City supports collaborating with other government entities to share technology resources, lessons learned and best practices; reform procurement practices, policies and procedures; and learn to function not only as a provider of services but as a source for other government entities, the public and other organizations to as value to city services.