By Will Tacy
Every year, local, state and federal agencies release massive amounts of information on various aspects of life in Minnesota. All of it is public, but much is so dense, so complex – and often so difficult to access – that average citizens rarely see it.
We believe that part of our mission as a news organization is to make as much of this information available to our readers as possible. For decades, we have done that in the newspaper, reporting, writing and publishing stories on what the data shows about life in the state. But on StarTribune.com, we now have the opportunity to provide you with the same information in a more dynamic and interactive manner.
Today we launch a new section – infoCenter – a single destination for our readers to access some of the information and data we collect as a news organization. From real estate transactions to crime reports to public employee salaries, infoCenter provides a rich glimpse into the numbers underlying life in the Twin Cities and across Minnesota. We will expand this service over time, adding more information and data as we go along.
We recognize that some readers may have concerns about our decision to make such information publicly available on StarTribune.com. While we are sensitive to such worries, we believe it is our duty to provide all of you – our readers – with such important public information. There are very good reasons that local, state and federal agencies are required to disclose and publish this information – as Thomas Jefferson so eloquently stated, “An informed citizenry is the bulwark of a democracy.”
We encourage you to explore infoCenter, and we welcome your thoughts, suggestions and questions. You can send us your feedback through the comments feature at the bottom of this page, through our online feedback tool or by emailing us at firstname.lastname@example.org.