The head of the Government Accountability Board says there are some issues with getting state agencies to comply with a contract sunshine law.
The law passed four years ago requires state agencies to report the details of contracts worth at least $10,000, which are then posted online. A review by an Appleton newspaper earlier this year found only 14 of 89 agencies had anything listed on the site though.
GAB Director Kevin Kennedy says they can’t easily force those to comply, since the law provides little in the way of an enforcement mechanism. He says their only real option is to go in and audit agencies, which they lack the staffing to carry out.
Lawmakers recently approved an audit of the Contract Sunshine website to determine how to improve compliance. Kennedy says it’s a problem they’re already working to solve, with steps such as offering more training and looking for ways to streamline the reporting process. He says many agencies have avoided reporting simply because they don’t have someone to manually enter all the data.
Kennedy says they also want a way to list agencies that didn’t have any large contracts to report, so the public can clearly see why an agency might not have any info listed on the site.