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City of Salem, OR Launches Open PBB Data!

, , | April 28, 2020 | By

"Our goal is that the online PBB data be used as a reporting tool for the Budget Committee, City Council and the community showing how City funds support the City's result areas and also as a framework for evaluating budget decisions. Through an open data site, you can now access data on each of the City's FY 2020 programs and services."

The City of Salem, Oregon is committed to sharing city data with the public to increase transparency, accountability, customer service, and empower citizens with the ability to harness a vast array of useful information to improve life in the city.

Salem Open PBB Data is specifically designed to transparently share all the city’s priority based budgeting data. "This site summarizes results of priority based budgeting (PBB) for the City of Salem. PBB is a recognized best practice and budgeting tool that provides improved transparency over traditional forms of line item budgeting. In PBB the cost of our services are defined at the program level. Additionally, our programs are evaluated against priorities of the City Council."

Through this Open PBB Data set, the community will now have the opportunity to:

  • Translates the city’s line-item budget into a program budget

  • Reveals the prioritization of every program in the city budget

  • Show exactly how much it costs the city to deliver every program (service)

  • Demonstrate exactly how much city staff support is required to deliver every program (service)

  • Exhibit the relevance of each program (service) in relation to community results

  • Show if a program is mandated (by Federal, State or local government) to be delivered

  • Demo if the city is a sole provider of a program or if others (public or private entity) are delivering similar programs

  • Present the level of reliance on the city citizens have for program delivery

  • Reveal program level revenue and if fee-based programs pay for themselves

  • Demonstrate the level in which every single city program impacts community results

Open PBB Data is the premier open data site in the nation. Never before have cities had the ability to share such comprehensive program level data with their citizens. With Salem Open PBB Data citizens will be able to:

  • Obtain a thorough understanding of all the programs the city delivers, what it costs to deliver programs, and understand whether the programs contribute to community results

  • Understand exactly what programs are funded through tax dollars

  • Evaluate and analyze how city programs impact community results

  • Communicate with the city to evolve the prioritization of programs

  • Salem business owners and other public entities will have an opportunity to evaluate all the city programs to determine where partnership opportunities exist

The City administration implemented a PBB process in 2018. Considered a best practice in government finance, the PBB analysis has been used to develop the city's 2019 - 2020 budgets to make improvements on how city resources are deployed, and identify opportunities to reduce costs and increase effectiveness of city services.

This process ultimately reflects "program metrics" that identifies the influences, measurements and factors that are most critical to achieving community result.

PBB data can be accessed from the City’s website at Salem Open PBB Data. Here citizens can find a more detailed explanation of priority based budgeting plus full access to the city's budget data.

The City of Salem is now the 2nd municipality in Oregon to implement priority based budgeting, joining over 300 organizations across North America in this innovative approach to ensuring a city’s long-term financial sustainability and will ultimately allow the City of Salem to also serve its residents in the most effective, efficient and fiscally responsible manner possible.

Contact us to discover more about PBB and how to transparently bring your PBB data to life!

And visit our COVID-19 support page to learn about the training + support opportunities we are providing to cities/counties to address fiscal challenges due to the pandemic.