Statements and Letters

Published by nycTWG or member groups:

2014 and 2013:

In April 2014, the nycTWG wrote an inquiry to New York City officials about the implementation of the then-overdue NYC Webcasting Law. Read our letter here.

In January 2014, in preparation for a hearing on the effectiveness of the NYC Open Data Law, the nycTWG issued a report titled NYC Open Data Law: Progress and Challenges. Our report highlighted the great strides made in implementation by the previous administration, as well as renewed our call for publishing the most-frequently requested data in NYC.

In December 2013, the nycTWG met with officials from the NYS Office of the State Comptroller to discuss the transparency features of Open Book NY, and make suggestions for further transparency improvements. After the meeting, our groups sent further recommendations to the OSC staff. Read the recommendations here.

Also in December 2013, the nycTWG wrote to Mayor-elect de Blasio’s transition committee to highlight the importance of exercising strong leadership in technology procurement, implementation, and data analytics. Read our letter here.

The nycTWG asked the NYC Council to create a database of spending to contractors in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, in accordance with the provisions of the NYC Open Data Law. Read our November 2013 letter here.

In October 2013, nycTWG wrote to the New York Metropolitan Transportation Council to urge the release of NYMTC data on an open data portal in machine-readable formats. Read the letter here.

In August 2013, the nycTWG provided extremely detailed recommendations for the New York State Open Data Handbook, the implementation guide for New York State’s open data initiative. Read the summary of our recommendations, or the entire handbook we provided the Open NY team.

2012 and 2011:

In December 2012, the nycTWG wrote to Governor Cuomo to ask the Governor to ensure that New York’s recovery and rebuilding from Hurricane Sandy was done as transparently as possible, with a series of five recommendations. Read the Post-Sandy Transparency letter.

Also in December 2012, the groups wrote to Mayor Bloomberg to ask that the upcoming one-year implementation deadline for the first phase of the NYC Open Data Law receive proper notice and preparation from agency officials. Read the letter here.

Ten recommendations for Intro 29-A, which was later passed as Local Law 11 of 2012, also known as the New York City Open Data Law. The groups made these recommendations during the drafting process, and many of these recommendations were incorporated into the final law.

Member groups of the nycTWG also issued a Letter of Support for the final version of Intro 29-A, before the New York City Council ultimately passed the bill.

The groups later drafted a letter to DOITT Commissioner Merchant making explicit technical recommendations for the open data standards in New York City’s implementation of Local Law 11 of 2012. The law charges DOITT with drafting technical standards for other city agencies’ use in opening their data to the public.

Members of the nycTWG released a letter calling for New York State officials to recommit themselves to open government using affordable information technology. Read the summary of the recommendations, and read the testimony of some of our member groups, given during a hearing at the New York State Senate, below:

Letter in support of a New York City Public Data Directory, written to Councilmember Cabrera in support of a bill which would have served as a precursor to the eventual New York City Open Data Law.

When the New York State Assembly held a hearing on harnessing the power of information technology, the nycTWG thanked the co-chairs for their commitment to public discussion of the ways state government could be improved thanks to the rapid pace of technical innovation.

The nycTWG has also called on New York City to express its interest in an electronic document management software platform being developed by the Federal Environmental Protection Agency. The EPA expects to save millions of dollars a year through the use of this system, and the nycTWG asked New York City to request that this tool be made available to states as well as federal entities. Read the letter here, and read the accompanying letter to NYS officials.

In June of 2012, the nycTWG wrote to Joseph Lhota, Executive Director of the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, with seven transparency initiatives which would increase organizational efficiency, reduce costs, and eliminate archaic business practices. Shortly thereafter, Director Lhota responded favorably to our suggestions. Read the nycTWG’s letter here, and the response from the MTA here.