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Follow the Money

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By James Call

http://stream.publicbroadcasting.net/production/mp3/wfsu/local-wfsu-883787.mp3

Tallahassee, FL – A Florida Senate committee met Monday to put the finishing touches on the
Transparency Florida Project. The initiative will enable citizens to follow how the state spends money.

Senate leaders pushed the web-based project last spring. It basically puts the state's checkbook on the world wide web for all to see. Members of an auditing committee have been deciding how to handle tens of thousands of reports documenting how tens of billions of dollars are spent each year.

Jacksonville Senator Stephen Wise is leading the group, which discussed whether financial statements from foundations supporting school districts are public records.

"The statute they are under is direct support organization, to directly support the
school district in their objectives, not to be some nonprofit organization that can go out and decide that they want to be something else."

The records will be posted on the web. The panel expects to have a final report ready in time for the opening day of the legislative session on March 2nd.