City Policies

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Information.png Info: The purpose of this page is to document the simple policy statements which define how the City will carry out the work required by Local Law 11 of 2012 and fulfill the mandate to make internal data available to the public.


In accordance with Local Law 11 of 2012, DoITT has established the following policies. Citywide open data policies apply to all City Agencies as defined by this law.

Governance and Oversight

Chief Open Platform Officer

DoITT must designate a Chief Open Platform Officer (COPO). The COPO will act as the overall manager for information technology initiatives as they pertain to open government, and making machine-readable data and transactional services available for public use. The COPO will have the following responsibilities:

Pre-existing processes such as Freedom of Information Law requests or public hearing governance will not be part of the COPO’s responsibilities.

Open Data Coordinators

Each Agency must designate one of its employees as the Agency’s Open Data Coordinator (ODC). Each ODC will act as the coordinator of open data efforts for that Agency. Each ODC will have the following responsibilities:

The ODC should be well-connected to or a part of the following Agency teams, in order of preference:


Local Law 11 of 2012 establishes the following compliance requirements.

Initial Compliance (March 7, 2013)

Local Law 11 of 2012 requires that on or before March 7, 2013, all qualifying data sets currently on must be made available via a single web portal.

If an Agency cannot make available all of its public data sets on the NYC OpenData portal by March 7, 2013, that Agency shall clearly and concisely state the reasons why any applicable data set cannot be made available, and the date by which the Agency believes that it will be available on the NYC OpenData portal.

Agency Compliance Plan (September 9, 2013)

DoITT must submit an initial compliance plan to the Mayor and the City Council on September 9, 2013. Following the initial plan, updated versions must be released annually, on or before July 15 of each year. DoITT will supply a template to each Agency to facilitate development of the compliance plan and updates. City agencies must cooperate with DoITT in the preparation of their plans. DoITT must make the final version of the compliance plan available to the public on the single web portal.

The compliance plan submitted to the Mayor and the City Council shall include a summary description of public data sets under the control of each Agency, prioritization of public data sets for inclusion on the single web portal, and a timeline for their publication or update. If a public data set cannot be made available on the single web portal by December 31, 2018, the plan shall clearly state the reasons why that set cannot be made available, and, to the extent practicable, the date by which the data will be available on the single web portal.

Open Data Dashboard

DoITT will create a public Open Data dashboard to promote public and internal accountability. The dashboard will track agency compliance plans and interim progress – specifically which data sets have been published through the NYC OpenData portal or by direct public access. The dashboard will also display by Agency:

Technology Projects

New Technology Systems

All new City projects to implement information technology systems, excluding infrastructure, must include funding, staffing, and tasks to comply with Open Data legislation, policies, and technical standards.

"Infrastructure" refers to those projects that solely involve the procurement and deployment of desktop computers, servers, operating systems, telephones, routers, firewalls, networks, and similar hardware capabilities.

Existing Technology Systems

All operating information technology systems, excluding infrastructure, must be evaluated for data that is eligible for publication. For each system, the Agency that owns or prepares the data must create a plan to publish data to comply with the Open Data legislation, policies, and technical standards. An updated summary of the plan must be provided to DoITT for inclusion in each Compliance Plan.


Enterprise Open Data Platform

DoITT will provide and manage the NYC OpenData portal for the City’s public data set catalog. All public data sets must be identified and referenced on this site. The single web portal will include interactive features to solicit public feedback. Public feedback includes discussion of Open Data policies, standards, guidelines, data sets, and prioritization of data set releases. Whenever practicable, DoITT will ensure the platform uses open Internet standards and specifications.

Enterprise Data Publishing Tools

DoITT will provide and manage automation tools to extract data from City technology systems, applying transformations, and loading data into the NYC OpenData platform. Agencies should leverage these tools as much as possible.

Data Sets

Open By Default

All public data sets must be considered open unless they contain information designated as sensitive, private, or confidential as defined by the Citywide Data Classification Policy or information that is exempt pursuant to the Public Officers Law, or any other provision of a federal or state law, rule or regulation or local law. The Agency submitting the data set is required to review its status and maintain currency with public disclosure requirements.

Alignment to Open Specifications

The structure of published data sets must align to New York State, national, or international specifications, where they exist. Agencies may consult with DoITT regarding current specifications.


Every Agency must create, publish, and maintain on the NYC OpenData portal accurate metadata for each public data set as set forth in the City Standards for Metadata in this Wiki.


Every Agency must ensure that each public data set and associated metadata is kept current to the extent that the agency regularly maintains or operationally updates the public data set..

Third-Party Search Engines

All public data sets must be accessible to the public through the NYC OpenData portal and accessible to third-party (Internet-based) search engines. In any exceptional case in which for technical reasons it is not feasible to host a public data set on the NYC OpenData portal itself, the NYC OpenData portal must provide a direct link to the public data set that is hosted elsewhere. An Agency may self-host the public data set, provided that the public data set is accessible through the link on the NYC OpenData portal to the public and to third-party (Internet-based) search engines.

Data Set Availability

Agency data sets published on the NYC OpenData portal must be made available without any registration requirement, license requirement, or restrictions on their use, except that DoITT may require a third party providing to the public any Agency public data set, or application utilizing such data set, to explicitly identify the source and version of the public data set, and a description of any modifications made to the public data set.

DoITT may undertake measures required to ensure access to public data sets, and to protect the NYC OpenData portal housing public data sets from unlawful abuse or attempts to damage or impair use of the website.


Agency data sets, including metadata, are not required to be published in additional languages beyond those used at their sources. The City may opt to implement automated language translation of data sets in the future.

Public Notification of Updates

Agencies must provide public data sets in a format that permits automated processing. The NYC OpenData platform shall make use of appropriate technology to notify the public of all updates.

Consultation with Voluntary Consensus Standards Bodies

DoITT shall consult with voluntary consensus standards bodies and shall – when such participation is feasible, is in the public interest, and is compatible with DoITT and Agency missions, authorities, and priorities – participate with such bodies in the development of technical and open standards.

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