Jackson County Telegram: Jackson City Schools, Oak Hill Village, two townships join OhioCheckbook.com
Jackson County Telegram
By Phillip Buffington
January 15, 2016
Representatives from Ohio Treasurer Josh Mandel's office were present in Jackson Wednesday morning in order to announce a partnership with the Jackson City School District, the Village of Oak Hill, Jefferson Township, and Jackson Township. These entities will join the over 470 local governments and school districts from across the state that have agreed to post their online checkbooks on OhioCheckbook.com.
The Ohio Treasurer's office was joined by Jackson City Schools Treasurer Rachel King and Superintendent Phil Howard at the Jackson City Schools Central Office Building for the announcement. Also present was Liberty Township Fiscal Officer Jill Newman who also announced her township's intent to partner with OhioCheckbook.com in the near future.
The Jackson City School District is the first school district in Jackson County to post its spending online, Jefferson Township and Jackson Township are the first townships in the county to post their spending online, and the Village of Oak Hill is the first village in Jackson County to post its spending on OhioCheckbook.com.
The following is a breakdown of today's local government sites: Jackson City Schools' online checkbook includes over 135,000 individual transactions that represent more than $88 million of total spending over the past four fiscal years. The Village of Oak Hill's online checkbook includes over 13,000 individual transactions that represent more than $4 million of total spending over the past three years. Jefferson Township's online checkbook includes over 2,000 individual transactions that represent more than $1 million of total spending over the past three years. Jackson Township's online checkbook includes over 1,000 individual transactions that represent more than $899,000 of total spending over the past three years.
Both Howard and King stated they view the partnership with Mandel's office as a great communication tool between the district and local taxpayers.
"Our board of education takes very seriously our responsibility for fiscal transparency," Howard said. "We want our taxpayers to know how we are spending our money. We believe our partnership here is a great tool to provide to our constituents."
King said making the school district's finances available to the public will hopefully better portray both the financial ups and downs experienced from year to year.
"Previously there have been lots of cuts that have had to be made in the district because of some financial hardships," King stated. "We are in a really good place now. We just want to make sure the taxpayers understand that we are in a good place, but we are still being very responsible with our dollars."
Newman, who explained her township is not quite ready for its OhioCheckbook.com launch, echoed the statements of Howard and King. She said posting finances for public view is a "good thing." Further, she explained people who may believe money is being wasted or misused can see firsthand how and where tax dollars are being spent.
For more information or to view your local government website, visit the Local Government option on OhioCheckbook.com or click on:
JacksonCitySchools.OhioCheckbook.com; OakHill.OhioCheckbook.com; JeffersonTownshipJackson.OhioCheckbook.com; or JacksonTownshipJackson.OhioCheckbook.com.