King County will release data for apps

May 25, 2010

By Staff

In the near future, King County residents could track crime statistics, find the nearest county park and check bus schedules on their smart phones — due to a measure adopted by the King County Council last week.

The council adopted legislation May 17 requiring the county to publish data sets online. The measure sets up the possibility for people and businesses to disseminate county data to the public through the Web and smart phone apps.

The legislation requires the county to produce by Aug. 1 a list of the data sets being considered for online publication. The county should post the data online by Nov. 1. King County plans to hold a public data workshop as well. Officials will announce the date next month.

Councilman Reagan Dunn — who represents unincorporated King County south of Issaquah, Bellevue and Newcastle — sponsored the ordinance.

“Political leaders like to talk about what a smart region we live in and how we are going to harness their knowledge to improve government,” he said in a news release. “This legislation will allow developers and the media to use King County data in new and innovative ways. In the process, our citizens get access to more information and our government becomes more transparent.”

King County Executive Dow Constantine praised the measure.

“This effort will help King County expand the work we’re doing on regional open government initiatives,” he said in the release. “By collaborating with local developers to find new uses and platforms for county data, we hope to help create applications that provide richer information and better service for all county residents.”

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