Open Data Policy Collection

Colorado Springs, CO

Administrative Policy (Feb 28, 2018)

View original policy (PDF)

Sunlight provided assistance with the development of this policy.

Open Data Policy

Prepared by: Jacob Anderson


1.0 Policy

This policy has been developed to outline the City of Colorado Springs’ (“City”) commitment to the principles of open government, including transparency and civic engagement. The City’s Open Data Policy will engage constituents and guide the release of open and accessible data while

2.0 Definitions

“Data” means narrative, textual, geospatial, tabular, legislative, source code, statistical, factual, quantitative, or qualitative information that is maintained or created by the City.

“Open data” means data that is available online, in an open format, with no legal encumbrances on use or reuse, and is available for all to access and download in full without fees or a requirement of registration.

“Open Data Administrator” (“Administrator”) is the mayor’s designee who will develop and implement the City’s Open Data Program.

“Open format” means any widely accepted, nonproprietary, platform-independent, machine-readable method for transmitting data, which permits automated processing of such data and facilitates analysis and search capabilities.

“Dataset” means a named collection of related records, with the collection containing data organized or formatted in a specific or prescribed way, often in tabular form.

“Protected information” means any dataset or portion thereof to which an agency may deny access pursuant to the legal requirements of the Colorado Open Records Act, City policies, or any other law, rule or regulation.

“Sensitive information” means any data which, if published by the City, violates privacy, confidentiality or security policies implemented by the City.

“Publishable data” means data which is not protected or sensitive and which has been prepared for release to external data users.

3.0 Open Data Program

A. The City commits to develop and implement practices to the extent it is prudent and practical, including:

  1. Proactively and strategically release City data, making it publicly available in open formats, with no restrictions on use or reuse;

  2. Make decisions about the publication of data, including:
    a. Prioritization of datasets to publish,
    b. Tactics for protecting sensitive or protected data, and
    c. Function and usability decisions regarding public access to data;

  3. Measure the effectiveness of datasets by connecting open data efforts to the City’s strategic priorities;

  4. Minimize limitations on the disclosure of open data while appropriately safeguarding protected and sensitive information; and

  5. Support innovative uses of the City’s publishable data by agencies, the public, and other partners.

B. The requirements of this policy shall apply to all City departments.

4.0 Governance

The Administrator will manage the Open Data Program, including:

  1. Create a comprehensive inventory of datasets held by each City department;
  2. Coordinate with City departments to manage the collection and release of data, prioritize datasets that will be released, and manage the collection;
  3. Work with the City Attorney’s Office to ensure compliance with all applicable laws and regulations;
  4. Develop and implement a process for prioritizing the release of datasets which takes into account new and existing signals of interest from the public, the City’s strategic priorities, existing opportunities for data use in the public interest, and cost;
  5. Actively encourage public participation through providing regular opportunities for feedback and collaboration;

  6. Establish processes for methods of data collection, publishing datasets, including processes for ensuring that datasets are reviewed for use-appropriate format, high quality, timeliness, and exclusion of protected and sensitive information;

5.0 Central Location for Published Data

A. The City’s publicly accessible website or another suitable location shall contain the City’s published data available for download.

B. Published datasets shall be placed into the public domain with no restrictions or requirements placed on subsequent public use.

6.0 Open Data Report and Review

A. The City shall publish a yearly Open Data Report. The report shall include an assessment of progress towards achievement of the goals of the City’s open data program, an assessment of how it furthered or will further the City’s strategic priorities, and a description and publication timeline for datasets envisioned to be published by the City in the following year.

B. During the review and reporting period, the City will review the progress made to ensure the City continues to move towards the achievement of this policy’s goals.

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