The origin of Washington's disclosure law can be traced to the efforts of concerned citizens who came together in 1970 believing that the public had the right to know about the financing of political activity in Washington. The law provides citizens with an in-depth look at who is financing a campaign or has hired legislative lobbyists. In addition, monitoring efforts of concerned citizens, special interest groups, media and the Public Disclosure Commission (PDC) assures compliance with the law.
The PDC has a long history of making data freely available online. Making that information available in a machine readable, standardized format can further improve public access and accountability by enabling those same concerned citizens, special interest groups and the media to analyze, filter and republish data in new and innovative ways.
We want to provide the public, news media, researchers, and casual users the ability to discern the specifics about campaign financing in Washington State by providing access to both historical data and up-to-the -minute searchable information. A usability-first approach will bridge the gap between users and data as well as allow the ability to download data into dissimilar formats based on user need.
We want to modernize the PDC's data retrieval processes to bring us more into line with current trends. Retrieval must be resilient under even the most arduous of conditions, including heavy usage during periods of intense analysis. The gateway must be robust and powerful enough for our users to make informed decisions about the financing of politics in Washington State.
Data must be current to provide meaningful analysis and maintained to reflect an accurate picture of the political environment in our state. We currently provide vast volumes of data for the PDC's power users; we now want to focus on our user-centric framework. We will rely on a network of stakeholders, to provide guidance into the needs and wants of the end users they represent, in order to provide integrated data from diverse sources that is always available. We will develop a cutting edge analytical reports structure permitting charting, graphing, and drilling down to granular data if desired. Using an iterative design process coupled with user-driven development will provide Washington with a model campaign finance information system.
Deliverables are determined by the Project Team.
The system is easy to use without training or documentation.
The system works on a variety of devices including tablets and smartphones.
Information is presented in a clear and compelling manner.
The system consolidates the various existing functionality (search the database, view reports, fact book reports, etc.) into a single interface.
The system cover all areas of campaign finance and lobbying information.
Stakeholders and the IT team drive the project
Data categories are complete and correct
**Executive Sponsor** - James Gutholm
Responsible for representing the interests of the stakeholders, decision making, prioritization.
Team Leader - Bruce Wendler
Responsible for team facilitation, communication and representing the needs of the team to the product owner and executive sponsor.
Stakeholders - Abraham Epton, Andrew Villeneuve, Ben Krokower, Bridget McLeman, Chad Magendanz, Clyde Cramer, Conner Edwards, Lea Galanter, Linda Hanson, Logan McDonald, Maya Gold, Michele Wilms, Tobi Nixon, Toyoko Tsukuda
Responsible for representing the broad interests of all the stakeholders, not just their own individual interests. The stakeholders are the primary source of formulating the functional goals for the project, priorities and reviewing work product to ensure that the implementation is meeting the desired outcome.
Subject Matter Experts - Jennifer Hansen, Chip Beatty, Toni Lince, BG Sandahl, and Kurt Young
Provide expert knowledge regarding the business rules and customer needs.
Technical Experts - Jim Coleman, Bill King, and Kyle Veldhuizen
Responsible for development and implementation.
We want to pull the data for this project from the PDC’s existing data sets in the state’s open data portal.
The development process will consist of 2 week sprints with back log grooming meetings on the first day of the sprint. At the end of each 2 week sprint a fully function piece of the project will be delivered to the stakeholders.
The data will be as clean as the data contained in the open data portal. We assume that there is a mechanism for querying open data.
The project is constrained to an 8 sprint/16 week time period, fixed staff work time, and no additional funding for services or staff.
* Staff turnover.
* Lack of team participation.
* Performance of systems outside of agency control (data.wa.gov).
* Legacy reporting systems may have unknown complexities that slow data migration.
* Agency emergencies that divert technical staff to other work.
* Socrata performance - during peak use periods will a large number of users slow the system.