(Contributed) Maple Ridge trying to be more accessible to residents.

Maple Ridge opening up online

New portal will share information with taxpayers

Maple Ridge is upgrading its online presence by adding a feature to its website to give people more power.

Next Tuesday, it’s launching its open government portal and asking for comments. At an invite-only event that afternoon, guests will be walked through a new section of mapleridge.ca to see how it all works.

But if you’re next to a computer at that time, 5:15 p.m., you can watch all of the unveil as it happens, via webcasting via the city’s website, mapleridge.ca.

The portal will give people more access to city files, subject to protection of privacy laws, such as development applications.

The project is one result of the citizen’s representative’s working group. That was formed as part of the Mayor’s Open Government Task Force, formed in 2016 to increase transparency, accountability and access to information for the public.

With the fully integrated portal, people will have a whole new way of getting information about city hall, said city spokesman Fred Armstrong.

“This is a start. We’ll continue to fine tune it as we get feedback from the community. I think people will be impressed.”

The Mayor’s Open Government Task Force submitted its recommendations in May 2016 with a work plan for implementing them.

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