Treasury debuts new spending tracker

Treasury debuts new spending tracker
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The Treasury Department on Tuesday unveiled an updated online tool designed to help citizens track government spending.

“The new site provides taxpayers with the ability to track nearly $4 trillion in government spending from Washington, D.C. directly into their communities and cities,” said Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin.

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The new site, Beta.USAspending.gov, builds off the same data used in the current usaspending.gov and highlights information such as how much federal agencies and programs cost, which states are the largest recipients of funding and which sectors receive the most government pay.

Users can see, for example, that only 28.7 percent of spending goes toward running the government and its services, or that 9.7 percent of total spending goes to California, the most of any state.

It also includes, for the first time, data on awards distributed by the government.

The new website was mandated by the 2014 Digital Accountability and Transparency Act (DATA Act).

But it is not the only game in town.

In April, former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer unveiled usafacts.org, a website that provides access to publicly available data on government revenue and spending on the federal, state and local levels.

That website also provides data on issues such as demographics, crime, health and education, and allows users to compare data from the various categories.