Common Cause Presents 2007 E-Government Award to Town of Winthrop

March 15, 2007

Photo by proud Town Manager, Richard J. White

For Immediate Release   
Contact:  Pam Wilmot
(617) 426-9600



Common Cause Presents 2007 E-Government Award to the Town of Winthrop
BOSTON (March 15, 2007)– At a State House event Thursday, the government watchdog group Common Cause Massachusetts presented the 2007 E-Government Award to the Town of Winthrop and 71 other communities from across the Commonwealth.

The event is part of Common Cause’s on-going Massachusetts Campaign for Open Government, which periodically reviews the Internet presence of all 351 cities and towns in the state. 

Municipalities receiving the 2007 E-Government award were: Amherst, Andover, Arlington, Ashburnham, Ashland, Barnstable, Becket, Bedford, Bolton, Boston, Boxborough, Brookline, Cambridge, Chelsea, Chelmsford, Concord, Dedham, Douglas, Dudley, Dunstable, Duxbury, Falmouth, Framingham, Franklin, Gloucester, Groton, Harvard, Hingham, Holden, Holliston, Hopkinton, Kingston, Lenox, Lexington, Manchester-by-the-Sea, Maynard, Melrose, Methuen, Nantucket, Newton, North Reading, Northampton, Palmer, Paxton, Peabody, Pelham, Plympton, Provincetown, Salem, Saugus, Scituate, Sharon, Shrewsbury, Somerville, Southampton, Southwick, Spencer, Springfield, Stow, Sudbury, Swampscott, Tewksbury, Uxbridge, West Springfield, Westfield, Westford, Weston, Westport, Weymouth, Winchester, Winthrop, Woburn, and Worcester.

“We are pleased to be able to honor the Town of Winthrop this year,” said Common Cause executive director Pam Wilmot.  “Winthrop rose to the challenge and significantly improved its website over the past year.”

“We work hard to provide information to Winthrop’s residents on our website,” said Michele Karas, M.I.S. Director.  “Moreover, we are committed to doing even better in years to come.  The Internet is the communication tool of the 21st century.  It’s cost effective, and we plan to make the best use possible.”

Common Cause launched the Massachusetts Campaign For Open Government last year.  At that time, only 24 communities met the Campaign’s standards and posted key governance records, which it defines as:  the community governing body’s agenda, the governing body’s minutes, fiscal year 2007 budget information, the municipality’s bylaws, code or ordinances, and if applicable, town meeting warrant and town meeting results or minutes.  

In September 2006, the number increased to 40 municipalities -- or about 11 percent of all 351 cities and towns.  With the current audit, the number jumped to 72, triple the original number. 

“Posting these six key records takes only minutes and costs virtually nothing”, said Wilmot.  “Communities like Winthrop that make this information available on the web are providing an important service to their citizens, and we are delighted to be able honor them.”

A copy of the full audit and pictures are available here.

About Common Cause
Common Cause Massachusetts is a nonpartisan, nonprofit, government watchdog, dedicated to citizen participation in an open, honest, and accountable government. An independent, member-supported organization, Common Cause has more than 200,000 members nationwide and 10,000 in Massachusetts.