By David Siders
Published: Thursday, Nov. 3, 2011 – 12:00 am | Page 3A

Gov. Jerry Brown has shut down the government transparency website created by his predecessor, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, as a repository for financial disclosure statements and other records.

A note on the website,, says information once available on the site can be found on other state websites and furnishes the links. But open government advocates objected to the website’s closure, claiming citizens will find it more difficult to track spending.

Many of the documents contained on the website – including information about state contracts, audits and salaries – can be found on other sites. But the transparency site, which was created in 2009 and shut down Tuesday, also included travel expense claims submitted by senior agency officials and employees of the Governor’s Office.

Brown’s office said Wednesday that travel records can be requested under California’s Open Records Act. Elizabeth Ashford, a spokeswoman for the Democratic governor, cited the time and cost of coping and uploading those documents.

Ashford said the website was created in response to concerns about travel and spending during Schwarzenegger’s administration. Staff and travel costs under Brown are far lower, she said.

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