Capitol Hill will soon see a gathering of private-sector companies demonstrating how technology can be used to cut waste – if federal spending data were standardized and transparent as required under the proposed Digital Accountability and Transparency Act.
The House Oversight and Government Reform Committee has invited more than 20 tech firms to showcase their tools to detect and prevent wasteful government spending. The May 16 event is the second one of its kind and was hosted last year by the Data Transparency Coalition.
The mini trade show will be set up in the foyer of the Rayburn House Office Building and is open to the public. Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) chairman of the oversight committee, decided to host the second DATA Demo day when the Data Transparency Coalition brought a group of companies to meet him in March to express their support for the DATA Act, said Hudson Hollister, executive director at the Data Transparency Coalition.
“Realizing that coalition members could demonstrate that data standards for spending would improve their capabilities to automate grantee compliance (Level One) and detect contract fraud governmentwide (Elder Research), the chairman decided to invite them to tell these stories publicly,” Hollister said.
First introduced in June 2011 by Issa and Sen. Mark R. Warner (D-Va.) and then reintroduced in September 2012 with co-sponsor Sen. Rob Portman (R-Ohio), the DATA Act aims to increase transparency and accountability for government spending. The legislation would create a single website that tracks agency spending, making it easier to zero in on improper payments, waste and fraud. The act is expected to be reintroduced in both houses of Congress in the near term.
As of now, 23 tech companies have signed up to participate in the demonstration and give live presentations showing how the DATA Act would allow their data search, publication and analysis tools to “connect big data to big government.” Hollister pointed out the focus would be to promote the DATA Act, rather than individual products.
Companies confirmed to present at the DATA Demo Day include:
- Spikes Cavell
- Elder Research
- Cambridge Semantics
- Oversight Systems
- Level One Technologies
- 3 Round Stones
- Tableau Software
The May 16 event will be held 10 a.m. in the first-floor foyer of the Rayburn House Office Building, facing Independence Avenue.