December 4, 2011

City of Chicago Posts Documents from City Council 2012 Budget Public Hearings

Mayor's Press Office    312.744.3334

Today the City of Chicago posted online all of the documents from the 2012 City Council Committee on Budget and Management public hearings, including the opening statements and presentations of individual departments' budget proposals.

“For the first time we are posting budget documents online in an easy to use format for the public,” said Mayor Emanuel. “This budget was not drawn up behind closed doors. We opened up the process so that the public can view the process we followed to get our finances back on track.”

The documents, organized by department, include the introductory statements and material presented to aldermen during each hearing, as well as the information departments provided to aldermen after the hearings in response to questions or requests that could not be immediately addressed. For ease of use, an index to those responses is also provided.

The City is posting this information in collaboration with the Inspector General’s Office as part of the Administration’s ongoing efforts to provide an unprecedented level of access to data and analysis to the public.

“Throughout the budgeting process the Mayor has remained committed to increasing the transparency of government,” said Budget Director Alex Holt. “We have to approach government and public service in a different way and come up with a different way of doing what we need to do to help our constituents.”

The documents are available here.

For the first time in the City’s history, a website was used to continue the conversation about the budget. received more than 2,500 ideas on the budget, and nearly 70,000 votes or comments on those ideas.  Nearly 130 of the ideas submitted by Chicagoans are reflected in the 2012 budget plan.  Additionally, Mayor Emanuel held two budget town halls this summer with over 1,000 people to discuss the budget directly with Chicagoans.

The City of Chicago’s data portal,, currently hosts 271 datasets with over 20 million rows of data. Since Mayor Emanuel took office on May 16, 2011, the portal has been viewed over 733,201 times and over 37 million rows of data have been accessed.

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