Wheatland Township earns Sunshine Award with perfect online transparency score

Wheatland Township earns Sunshine Award with perfect online transparency score

Wheatland Township’s “transparency portal” provides residents access to important government information.

The Illinois Policy Institute awarded Wheatland Township its Sunshine Award for government transparency on Jan. 15. The township earned the award with a perfect score of 100 percent.

The Sunshine Award acknowledges government entities that earn top marks under the information accessibility criteria set forth in the Local Government Transparency Project, which include public meeting schedules, officials’ contact information, government employee salaries and budget information. Providing this data is essential because democracy can function well only when citizens have access to the facts they need to stay informed and hold their government accountable.

Wheatland Township created a link on its webpage, which includes a “transparency portal” where residents can find all the information included in the Local Government Transparency Project’s 10-Point Transparency Checklist. This includes public officials’ contact information, meeting agendas and minutes, financial audits and salary information.

The Wheatland Township Board of Trustees has taken important steps in serving its community by being open and transparent to residents. Of the nearly 7,000 local government entities in Illinois, only 75 have earned Sunshine Awards, and only 10 – including Wheatland Township – have received perfect scores. Their efforts provide excellent examples for other local government entities to follow.

To learn more about how to make local-government entities, such as school districts, county and municipal governments, more transparent and accountable, please contact Mindy Ruckman at mruckman@illinoispolicy.org.

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