Thursday, April 27, 2006

Indy report reveals OGO costs less

Independent local research group Liveable City has released its non-partisan study of the Open Government Online Amendment, Proposition 1 on the May 13th ballot. The major conclusion is that the cost of the OGO will be less than 1/10 of the City's first cost estimate. The City of Austin has now confirmed Liveable City’s cost estimate, and Clean Austin has confirmed Liveable City’s report as accurately reflecting the priorities set out in the amendment.

From Liveable City:

Liveable City released two studies examining the hotly contested Open Government (Proposition 1) and Clean Water (Proposition 2) Charter Amendments in the upcoming May 13 City of Austin Election. The ballot studies are intended to help Austin voters sort out the critical issues, including arguments by supporters and opponents, and possible impacts of passage of the proposals.

Two separate teams of Board members worked on the ballot studies over the last two months. The studies uncovered the fact that 122 developments had been grandfathered over the aquifer since 1999, and that a more focused open government online plan could cost less than 1/10 of the City's current estimate.

In other good news, start looking for our TV ads, which start today!


At 1:37 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

No, the study says the cost could be less for a MORE FOCUSED open government plan, not this amendment. Here is the quote from the LC press release:
"a more focused open government online plan could cost less than 1/10 of the City's current estimate."

This study is actually highly critical of the amendment and confirms that it was poorly drafted.
Read the report for yourself here:

At 1:48 PM, Blogger JS Hatcher said...

I urge everyone to go read the report for themselves as well (that is why I included links in the post).

The FOCUS would come from the CITY, who gets to implement the plan. This is an intentional feature of the amendment--the amendment leaves little room in certain places (police records) and more room, and thus flexibility for the city, in others (like "real time").

The focus could also come from Liveable City's recommended Citizen's Task Force who will assist in implementation if the amendment is passed.

About the cost, p19 of the report states:

"For example, the Study Team estimates, and has confirmed with the City, that under a scenario that prioritizes the above information and that we believe would satisfy the current supporters of the amendment, capital cost could be in the $2 to $3 million dollar range, with recurring costs in the under $1 million per year range. This would result in a dramatically improved bottom line, well under the opponents’ current projected $36 million in capital costs and up to $12 million annually."

At 6:56 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The satisfaction of the "current supporters" is irrelevant. What matters is what the amendment says.

The very fact that you say "real time" is flexible with a straight face is hilarious!

"Let's do the time warp again!"

At 1:26 PM, Blogger JS Hatcher said...

I agree that the important thing is what the amendment says. Read it, and the report, and you will see what exactly is required online.

LC got a cost estimate on the enumerated specifics in the amendment and it was less than 1/10 of the City's estimate. This number was confirmed by the city.

Everything beyond enumerated specifics is on a possible and practical basis. The City decides what is possible and practical. Any suggestion that the City doesn't have to take into account cost when deciding what is practical is absolutely ridiculous.

"Real time" is flexible, just like "due process" is flexible in our US Constitution. The plain language of the term sets a limit. Council will set the exact details, Rocky Horror reference or not.


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