NORMAN — Oklahoma taxpayers now have a quick and easy way to examine state government’s spending with the “Oklahoma Treasury Online Checkbook” launched today by State Treasurer Ken Miller.
“Banks give their customers online access to their accounts; it only makes sense for the state’s chief financial officer to provide the same access to Oklahoma taxpayers,” Miller said.
The state’s checkbook register can be found by clicking on the online checkbook graphic on Treasurer Miller’s homepage, www.treasurer.ok.gov.
Information can be found on expenditures and collections by function of government or by agency. Payments to businesses and state employees are included and can be viewed collectively or searched by individual. Deposits include total receipts by day and by agency but do not disclose the names of taxpayers.
“This user-friendly tool, which many will find is as easy to use as their own checkbook, is a great complement to Open Books,” Miller said.
To demonstrate the ease of using the site, Miller showed reporters how to search for information by looking up payments by the state treasurer’s office. In about a minute, Miller was able to pull a report of all payments made in December by the agency he heads.
The online checkbook contains almost six million expenditures made since July 2007 and some 200,000 entries of revenue collections since April 2010.
This new functionality was made possible in part by the provisions of House Bill 1086, which required electronic payment of vendor invoices, eliminating the need to print thousands of traditional checks.
The House author of HB 1086, State Rep. Jason Murphey, R-Guthrie, praised the new service.
“This transparency initiative will allow Oklahoma taxpayers to hold state government accountable for years into the future,” Murphey said. “I am especially impressed with the site’s user friendly interface ...”
The Senate author of HB 1086, Sen. Clark Jolley, R-Edmond, said, “More openness in state government, such as this site provides, can only lead to better spending decisions.”