Ethics Commission Publishes Trove of NYS Lobbying Filings on State Open Data Portal

Good move by State Ethics Commission to increase transparency

Reinvent Albany thanks the staff of the NYS Commission on Ethics and Lobbying in Government (COELIG) and Office of Information and Technology Services (ITS) for publishing lobbyist disclosure filings dating to 2019 on Open NY, the state’s open data portal. At its annual hearing earlier this year, Reinvent Albany requested COELIG publish open data for lobbying and financial disclosure reports already on its website, fully complying with Executive Order 95 of 2013.

Lobbyists and their clients file a variety of reports with COELIG, which will all now be available as open data, including:

  • Lobbyist Statements of Registration
  • Public Corporation Statements of Registration
  • Lobbyist Bi-Monthly Reports (the largest single dataset hosted on Open NY)
  • Public Corporation Bi-Monthly Reports
  • Client Semi-Annual Reports
  • Disbursement of Public Monies Bi-Monthly Reports

The release of these datasets substantially opens up lobbying reporting, better allowing the public to see who is seeking to influence government at the local and state levels. Previously, this data was only available through the COELIG’s online database, which is more cumbersome and difficult to access and download for certain users.

Release of this data will also facilitate more complete and up-to-date information on the New York Open Government platform administered by the Attorney General’s Office, which aggregates data from several New York State agencies, including data on campaign contributions and expenditures, lobbyist disclosures, government contracts, and registered charities.

Reinvent Albany has fought for open data efforts that put the state’s and city’s vast wealth of digital information online to allow the public to see what our state government is doing, how it spends our taxpayer funds, and who gets those funds. As part of our work for open New York government, we won the first Open Data Law in the world – the NYC Open Data Law, as well as NY state’s robust “Open NY” open data initiative via executive order.