Senate File 139 - Introduced SENATE FILE 139 BY HAMERLINCK (COMPANION TO HF 6 BY COWNIE) A BILL FOR An Act requiring the development of a searchable budget 1 database and internet site for the public to access the 2 details of the expenditure of state tax revenues and a 3 searchable tax rate database and internet site for the 4 public to access the details of each tax rate for all taxing 5 districts in the state. 6 BE IT ENACTED BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF THE STATE OF IOWA: 7 TLSB 1559XS (2) 84 tw/sc
S.F. 139 Section 1. Section 8.6, Code 2011, is amended by adding the 1 following new subsection: 2 NEW SUBSECTION . 9A. Budget and tax rate databases. To 3 develop and make available to the public a searchable budget 4 database and internet site as required under chapter 8G, 5 division I, and to develop and make available to the public 6 a searchable tax rate database and internet site as required 7 under chapter 8G, division II. 8 Sec. 2. NEW SECTION . 8G.1 Intent —— findings. 9 The general assembly finds that taxpayers should be able to 10 easily access the details on how the state is spending their 11 tax dollars and the performance results achieved for those 12 expenditures. Therefore, it is the intent of the general 13 assembly to direct the department of management to create 14 and maintain a searchable budget database and internet site 15 detailing where tax dollars are expended, the purposes for 16 which tax dollars are expended, and the results achieved for 17 all taxpayer investments in state government. 18 Sec. 3. NEW SECTION . 8G.2 Short title. 19 This subchapter shall be known as and may be cited as the 20 “Taxpayer Transparency Act” . 21 Sec. 4. NEW SECTION . 8G.3 Definitions. 22 As used in this subchapter, unless the context otherwise 23 requires: 24 1. “Agency” means a state department, office, board, 25 commission, bureau, division, institution, or public 26 institution of higher education. “Agency” includes individual 27 state agencies and programs, as well as those programs and 28 activities that are administered by or involve more than one 29 agency. “Agency” includes all elective offices in the executive 30 branch of government and the general assembly. 31 2. “Director” means the director of the department of 32 management. 33 3. “Entity” or “recipients” means any of the following: 34 a. A corporation. 35 -1- LSB 1559XS (2) 84 tw/sc 1/ 6
S.F. 139 b. An association. 1 c. An employee union. 2 d. A limited liability company. 3 e. A limited liability partnership. 4 f. Any other legal business entity, including nonprofit 5 entities. 6 g. A grant recipient. 7 h. Contractors. 8 i. A county, city, school district, or other local 9 government entity. 10 “Entity” or “recipients” does not include an individual 11 recipient of state assistance. 12 4. “Funding action or expenditure” includes details on the 13 type of spending that is provided including but not limited 14 to grants, contracts, and appropriations. “Funding action 15 or expenditure” includes tax exemptions or credits. Where 16 possible, an electronic link to the actual grants or contracts 17 shall be provided. An electronic link shall be in a format 18 that is a searchable document. 19 5. “Funding source” means the state account or fund from 20 which the expenditure is appropriated. 21 6. “Searchable internet site” means an internet site 22 that allows the public at no cost to search and compile the 23 information identified in section 8G.4 and that provides such 24 information in a format capable of being downloaded from the 25 site to personal computers. 26 7. “State audit or report” shall include any audit or report 27 issued by the auditor of state, department of management, 28 legislative services agency, legislative committee, or 29 executive body relating to the entity or recipient of funds, 30 the budget program or activity, or agency. 31 Sec. 5. NEW SECTION . 8G.4 Searchable budget database 32 internet site created. 33 1. By January 1, 2013, the director shall develop and make 34 publicly available a database internet site for searching, 35 -2- LSB 1559XS (2) 84 tw/sc 2/ 6
S.F. 139 accessing, and processing data, including the data required in 1 this section, for the most recent state budget. The internet 2 site shall be developed in such a way that the information can 3 be provided to other software applications, including internet 4 software applications, in a manner and format that allows such 5 software applications to access and interpret the data using 6 the internal programming of the software applications. 7 2. The searchable internet site developed pursuant to this 8 section shall allow the public at no cost to search and compile 9 information for all of the following: 10 a. Name and principal location or residence of the entity or 11 recipient of state funds. 12 b. Amount of state funds expended. 13 c. Funding or expending agency. 14 d. Funding source of the revenue expended. 15 e. Budget program or activity of the expenditure. 16 f. Descriptive purpose for the funding action or 17 expenditure. 18 g. Expected performance outcome for the funding action or 19 expenditure. 20 h. Past performance outcomes achieved for the funding action 21 or expenditure. 22 i. State audit or report relating to the entity or recipient 23 of state funds or the budget program or activity or agency. 24 j. Any other relevant information specified by the director. 25 Sec. 6. NEW SECTION . 8G.5 Internet site updates. 26 1. Effective July 1, 2013, the internet site shall be 27 updated for each fiscal year not later than thirty days 28 following the close of the fiscal year. In addition, the 29 director may update the internet site as new data becomes 30 available. All agencies shall provide to the director data 31 that is required to be included on the internet site not later 32 than thirty days after the data becomes available to the 33 agency. The director shall provide guidance to agency heads 34 or the governing body of an agency to ensure compliance with 35 -3- LSB 1559XS (2) 84 tw/sc 3/ 6
S.F. 139 this section. 1 2. By January 1, 2014, the director shall add data for 2 the previous budgets to the internet site. Data for previous 3 fiscal years may be added as it becomes available and as time 4 permits. The director shall ensure that all data added to the 5 internet site remain accessible to the public for a minimum of 6 ten years. 7 Sec. 7. NEW SECTION . 8G.6 Noncompliance. 8 The director shall not be considered in compliance with this 9 subchapter if the data required for the internet site is not 10 available in a searchable manner and capable of being compiled 11 or if the public is redirected to other government internet 12 sites unless each of those sites displays information from 13 all agencies and each category of information required can be 14 searched electronically by field in a single search. 15 Sec. 8. NEW SECTION . 8G.10 Intent —— findings. 16 The general assembly finds that increasing the ease of 17 public access to state and local tax rates, particularly 18 where the rates are currently available from disparate 19 government sources and are difficult for the public to collect 20 and efficiently aggregate, significantly contributes to 21 governmental accountability, public participation, and the 22 understanding of the cost of government services. Therefore, 23 it is the intent of the general assembly to direct the 24 department of management, in consultation with the department 25 of revenue, to create and maintain a searchable database and 26 internet site of each tax rate for all taxing districts in the 27 state to make citizen access to state and local tax rates as 28 open, transparent, and publicly accessible as is feasible. 29 Sec. 9. NEW SECTION . 8G.11 Short title. 30 This subchapter shall be known and cited as the “Taxation 31 Disclosure Act” . 32 Sec. 10. NEW SECTION . 8G.12 Tax rate database. 33 1. Searchable tax rate database. By January 1, 2012, the 34 department of management, in consultation with the department 35 -4- LSB 1559XS (2) 84 tw/sc 4/ 6
S.F. 139 of revenue, shall make publicly available on an internet site 1 a searchable database of all tax rates in the state for each 2 taxing jurisdiction. The information shall be aggregated by 3 type of tax and accessible by entering a zip code or physical 4 address for each residency or business. Individual tax levies 5 shall be further specified within each tax rate. 6 2. Geographical tax rate map. In addition to searching for 7 tax rates by zip code or physical address for each residency or 8 business, searches shall be accommodated by a geographical tax 9 rate map of the state that is capable of being displayed with a 10 level of specificity corresponding to each taxing district. 11 3. Individual tax rate calculator. Tax rate calculators 12 shall be provided on the searchable database to allow citizens 13 and businesses to calculate taxes based on the location of the 14 citizen or business. Calculation capability shall be provided 15 at a minimum for property, sales, use, income, vehicle, and 16 business taxes and shall be specific to the rate for the taxing 17 district identified by the citizen or business. 18 Sec. 11. NEW SECTION . 8G.13 Updating database. 19 To facilitate the department of management’s efforts in 20 creating and maintaining a searchable database of the taxes 21 identified in section 8G.12, subsection 3, for all taxing 22 districts in the state, every taxing district shall report its 23 tax rates annually to the department of management and shall 24 report any changes to its tax rates within thirty days of the 25 change. 26 EXPLANATION 27 This bill enacts new Code chapter 8G which is divided 28 into two separate subchapters. The first subchapter (new 29 Code sections 8G.1 through 8G.6), requires the department of 30 management to develop and make available to the public by 31 January 1, 2013, a single, searchable budget database and 32 internet site. This internet site would allow the public at 33 no cost to search an aggregated database that would provide 34 the names and principal location or residence of recipients of 35 -5- LSB 1559XS (2) 84 tw/sc 5/ 6
S.F. 139 state funds, amount of funds expended, the agency that provided 1 those funds, the program or activity of the expenditure, 2 description of the purpose of the expenditure, expected and 3 past outcomes of funding actions or expenditures, state audits 4 relating to expenditures, and other relevant information. The 5 bill specifies that “recipient” does not include an individual 6 recipient of state assistance. 7 The bill provides that, effective July 1, 2013, the 8 searchable budget database internet site is to be updated 9 within 30 days of the end of each fiscal year. By January 1, 10 2014, data is to be added for previous fiscal years. 11 The second subchapter requires the department of management, 12 in consultation with the department of revenue, by January 1, 13 2012, to develop and operate on an internet site a searchable 14 database of all the tax rates in the state for each taxing 15 district. The database shall include the capability to 16 calculate tax rates for different taxing districts. 17 -6- LSB 1559XS (2) 84 tw/sc 6/ 6