Ever been curious about how your local municipal government spends your money? Municipalities submit this information to the province, and Alberta makes the data available freely online. But sifting through tables of numbers trying to develop a big-picture understanding can be a challenge.
This is why we created Budgee, the Municipal Budget App. Budgee generates treemap visualizations of budget data to provide a big-picture view of the various categories of spending and their relative sizes. Budgee includes data for every Alberta municipality from 2009-2013.
Using the drop-down menus, you can quickly see what proportion of any municipality's budget is spent in any category. The treemap depicts each category as a rectangle, whose size is proportional to the amount of municipal spending in that category. Clicking on any rectangle will zoom in on the category, to show the subcategories within.
For example, if the category is Public Safety, the subcategories include Police, Fire, and so on. If you click on any part of the visualization at the subcategory level, you will be taken back to the category level. At either level, a table below the visualization lists all of the categories and their spending amounts.
You can also check out the videos on the About page for a crash course in municipal budgeting.
We've made the project entirely open-source; all code is available on github, which means that anyone can use Budgee as a starting point to create visualizations of their own.