Ben Kallos, former chief of staff to Assemblyman Jonathan Bing who is currently working on Mark Green's campaign, is launching a new Web site that allows users to search the attendance records of state lawmakers, making available information that the state isn’t so quick to provide. (Ask folks in the Albany press corps about that.)
The site is called NewYork.OpenLegislation.org, and it also allows users to see how each lawmaker voted on a particular piece of legislation. Users will also be able to see whether lawmakers attended their committee meetings.
Kallos has already launched a Web site to help the public search voter data information. In a brief interview, Kallos said he and others are paying for the cost of the site—a few hundred dollars—out of their own pockets, but hopes to get grant funding for it later. Kallos helped aggregate the information for the site by using public data, and filing Freedom of Information Law requests, he said.
The site is of a piece with the continued Rasiej-ization of progressive politics, coming as part of a 50-state project to make more information about state legislatures public and accessible and following the launch of Andrew Cuomo's SunlightNY.com.